Complex Cases in Student Affairs: Preparing Early Career Professionals for Practice, 1st Edition (Hardback) book cover

Complex Cases in Student Affairs

Preparing Early Career Professionals for Practice, 1st Edition

By Michael G. Ignelzi, Melissa A. Rychener, Molly A. Mistretta, Stacy A. Jacob


238 pages

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Complex Cases in Student Affairs provides students and professionals with a deeper understanding of how problems in student affairs might be addressed through the application of relevant theory/research and practical considerations of professional practice. Featuring 22 original cases situated at a range of different types of institutions, this important text covers many functional areas, represents the experiences of a diverse set of student populations, and addresses a variety of complex and intersecting issues that student affairs professionals regularly face. A clear process for applying theory to practice along with case-specific questions prompts readers to engage with the issues presented in the cases, identify and analyze problems, and construct robust solutions. Whether you are a student affairs or higher education graduate student, faculty member, early student affairs professional, or staff supervisor, reading, analyzing, and crafting resolutions to the cases in this book will better prepare you to effectively consider and address the challenges of the field.


"The compelling case studies in this book offer graduate students and other readers dynamic, immersive opportunities for exploration and learning. Guided by the editors' introductory sections emphasizing multiple lenses and perspectives, systematic analyses of these cases will advance professionalism, sound judgment, and prudent foresight."

Florence A. Hamrick, Professor and Graduate Program Director, Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey

Table of Contents




Part I: Introduction

1 Why a Case Study Approach?

Michael G. Ignelzi and Melissa A. Rychener

2 Analyzing a Case Study

Stacy A. Jacob, Stefanie M. Centola, and Kara Werkmeister

3 Resolution of a Case Study

Molly A. Mistretta and Kara Werkmeister

Part II: The Cases

4 Student Veteran Support and Discrimination

Kara Werkmeister and Stacy A. Jacob

5 Black Student Experiences at a Rural Branch Campus

Jordan W. Brooks and Molly A. Mistretta

6 Student Athlete Struggles to Find Footing on Campus

Kerri Butler and Molly A. Mistretta

7 An Alcohol Incident During Orientation

Annie C. Cassin and Melissa A. Rychener

8 Supporting LGBT Students at a Religiously-Affiliated College

Renee K. (Austin) Coyne and Michael G. Ignelzi

9 Provisional Admissions Decisions at a Branch Campus

Correy Dandoy and Stacy A. Jacob

10 Rigid Academic Policy Within a Changing Institution

Caitlin Barbour Ginter and Molly A. Mistretta

11 From Foster Care to the Ivory Tower: A Homeless Student’s Struggle

Sara Gould and Molly A. Mistretta

12 Hazing in the Band

Kristin M. Gregory and Stacy A. Jacob

13 Controversial Speech in the Student Newspaper

Deron T. Jackson and Melissa A. Rychener

14 Student Conduct: Inclusion for Student Organizations and Students with Disabilities

Todd E. Kamenash and Michael G. Ignelzi

15 Keep Them on Campus: The Unintended Consequence of a Residence Hall Policy

Lenee McCandless and Melissa A. Rychener

16 Social Media Scandal

Felicia P. McKinney, Emma K. Coomes, and Stacy A. Jacob

17 Roommates from Different Worlds

Ryan Morgado and Stacy A. Jacob

18 Disability Service Animals and Emotional Support Pets

Janine N. Muri and Michael G. Ignelzi

19 Swept Away by an International Student Crisis

Lauren Perri and Melissa A. Rychener

20 Orientation Leaders and Staff Diversity

Emily Price and Stacy A. Jacob

21 The College Admissions Process: Search and Satisfaction

Denise N. Sanata and Molly A. Mistretta

22 Identity Expression: Safer to Wait Until Graduation?

Meridia D. Sanders and Melissa A. Rychener

23 A Young Black Woman's Experience in a Historically White Sorority

Lesli Somerset and Molly A. Mistretta

24 Helping Students, Setting Professional Boundaries in an Unsupportive Environment

Morgan E. Weber and Michael G. Ignelzi

25 Student or Athlete? An Advising Dilemma in the Basketball Program

Brandy A. Wilson and Michael G. Ignelzi

Index for Case Chapters

Contributor Biographies


About the Authors

Michael G. Ignelzi is Professor of Student Affairs in Higher Education in the Department of Counseling and Development at Slippery Rock University, USA.

Melissa A. Rychener is Coordinator of the Intercultural Preparation and Competency Curriculum at Duquesne University, USA.

Molly A. Mistretta is Assistant Professor of Student Affairs in Higher Education and Clinical Mental Health Counseling in the Department of Counseling and Development at Slippery Rock University, USA.

Stacy A. Jacob is Assistant Professor of Student Affairs in Higher Education and Graduate Coordinator for the Department of Counseling and Development at Slippery Rock University, USA.

Subject Categories

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