CDN Campus Advocates are individuals who are interested in supporting, assisting, and advocating for student-led CDN Chapters.
Advocates can be a member of campus administration, college faculty, staff, or alumni. Each Campus Advocate will support their local CDN Chapter in a way that is highly individualized to their own personal interests and skill sets, as well as to the Chapter’s needs and goals.
Campus Advocates will be educated on the experiences of students affected by diabetes on campus. They will be engaged individuals that actively support both individual students and CDN Chapters. With a network of Campus Advocates across the country, our student-led Chapters will be better equipped to provide the much needed peer support to even more students affected by diabetes.
You’re interested? Here’s what you can do next:
Why are Campus Advocates important?
While life in college is full of big steps for everyone, young adults with diabetes face many unique challenges on campus. But they also have years of experience with resiliency, self advocacy, and strength. With Campus Advocates, students will have an ally to provide consistency and stability as they move through college and run their student-led Chapter. Even having one person who ‘gets it’ to talk through challenges and offer support will make a significant difference in creating a safer, more welcoming environment for students with diabetes on college campuses.
What can Campus Advocates do?
As a Campus Advocate for a CDN Chapter, you can support students administratively, act as a mentor, and so much more! Here are a few examples of what your role could look like:
-Direct and introduce students to appropriate departments/campus personnel
-Act as their faculty advisor
-Assist with registering as a club on campus
-Room reservations, event planning, budget management
-Lead discussion in areas of interest (registering for accommodations, life of a dietician with T1D, etc.)
-Facilitate discussion around bigger events
-Aid in leadership transitions
-Connect Chapter with the greater community (high schools, local hospitals, etc.)
Do I need to have a CDN Chapter at my school to be a Campus Advocate?
Nope! Campus Advocates come in all different shapes and sizes. If there is no active Chapter at your school, we can support you in starting one or connect you with students as they come along. Some Campus Advocates will serve as advisors for their Chapters, and others will serve as a supportive ally on campus- all levels of involvement are valuable to your school’s diabetes community!
A student asked me to be a Campus Advocate, but I don’t know anything about diabetes.
You’re certainly not alone– while there’s a lot to learn, CDN is here to help! We’ll provide you with educational resources via our quarterly newsletter, REACH guides, and more. The most important thing is that you’re willing to listen and learn, especially from your students with diabetes.
What does the time commitment look like– both with students and with CDN national?
The time commitment is individualized based on your specific role and your Chapter’s needs. If you are working toward starting a Chapter at your school, there will be a slightly bigger lift in the beginning as you try to identify a student leader. Otherwise, it’s based on student needs and interests. CDN national expects contact with you at least once per semester, and additional touch points if it’s helpful for you!