It was a real treat to work with the Career Center team at Texas A&M this year to redesign their Aggie Career Success Handbook (formerly Career Guide).
I’d redesigned this book once before (around 2013-14) when I was working for CRM. Michael Shehane found my company website and recognized my name, and he reached out to see if I was up for another redesign.
Conversations for production started in January. We were into actual production by March. The Accessible PDF delivered in late August. August 27th the BlueToad edition was done. Slide over to the Recent Work page to see both editions.
Texas A&M Career Center had a large team working on refining the content for the book. The project was masterfully managed at their end initially by Michael Shehane, and then he turned it over to the talented Paige Hellman-Millar for completion.
Design by committee can be a daunting prospect because there are a lot of moving parts. There absolutely needs to be a project coordinator on the client side of production to avoid conflicting information. The Career Center team had this nailed down which resulted in a smooth and wonderful collaboration.
Additional Texas A&M team members who worked on the book and deserve a “Well done!” include: Amarette Renieri, Susan Keough, Taylor Henderson, under the benevolent guidance of Samantha Wilson, with Dolores Gonzales in a crucial supporting role.
Off The Pews: Faith In Action (OTP) Virtual Winter Program started in February. As OTP’s website administrator, I sat in on the first five classes in order to take screen captures initially to be used in blog posts on OTP website. Eventually, they were used for a video compilation showing the kids’ work. More about that later. Chloe Anne Kelly from the Hyde Park Art Center (HPAC) presented the art sessions.
This program was a collaborative effort involving the staff of OTP, HPAC, and the Sunshine Gospel Ministries in Chicago, IL. Donnell Williams from Sunshine Gospel Ministries organized three ShopTalk sessions that followed the art classes, and this Saturday will be the final meeting and celebration of completion.
Sitting in on the collage classes and using fun techniques to address a new theme each week was not a hardship because artwork is one of my favorite things. Julie Andrews twirling in a field just popped into my head—fun.
I was putting together the spring newsletter and inserted a featured photo. At that moment I discovered I could insert a video.
A new project was born! I created this video compilation in Photoshop and output it for YouTube so I could share it as the featured art in the Off The Pews Newsletter, Spring Edition. It contains the screen captures showing the participants’ work as well as a few photos they emailed to share their work.
NMP Services included in this project:
Website administration for OTP
published supporting blog posts
soliciting stakeholders for additional content
contact list maintenance
color and brightness correction
Video assembly and output using Photoshop
Contact NMP to discuss services that may be of interest to you for upcoming projects.
We are approaching one year of dealing with the new work situation in a time of pandemic. If you are a career services professional, you have likely been working remotely with the students you advise. How is it going for you?
I’ve been in enough Zoom meetings to know they are a life saver for safe face-to-face conversations in our current circumstances. I also know it can be hard to nail down a convenient time to meet, and once engaged, the meeting is a limited time to work together before both parties become fatigued.
A custom Career Guide would be something you could write once and distribute universally. You’ve already written a lot of the material—check your “sent” email box.
How About a Custom PDF?
A PDF is static content with a fixed message that you create. NMP can design your content into something more than a long document of text, and provide an Accessible PDF.
There are many ways to interact with an online edition, and certainly a mobile solution allows more frequent interaction. For example, you can reread that article on networking when you have five minutes on a train ride.
However, most job applicants require an hour or two of concentration at a computer when it comes to identifying the key words in a job description, and updating a resume to reflect their specific experience in those terms; writing a cover letter after researching a specific HR person’s information; emailing the application or filling out the online form; filing all pertinent information; and finally, recording the contact in a spreadsheet in order to keep 200+ applications organized.
Completing this concentrated work with a reference by your side or in a browser window can make life a little easier.
Varieties of Custom Career Guides
The perfect textbook for a course on career planning. It is written by you addressing your students’ challenges. NMP has an article library for you to use as a starting point for your content.
A workbook to accompany advising sessions. Have a student answer some basic questions and email you the results before you meet so your Zoom session is devoted to the specifics. NMP can output a separate PDF and convert it to a fillable form.
A specialty guide can address the intricate application requirements, and educational and experiential details required by a particular field—law, medicine, or engineering. NMP looks forward to hearing what you’d like to accomplish.
Contact NMP to explore creating your own custom Career Guide.
As we look at the publishing year in review, we are pleased to note NMP embraced adaptation in this year’s publishing cycle. New recruiting practices led to new articles. Final products were adapted to suit the virtual learning environment. We accomplished all of this as we also adapted to a new way of life. As a result, we hereby dub “adaptability” as the NMP Keyword of 2020.
A combination of print and online production were the focus of January and February’s conversations. With the March arrival of COVID-19, our conversations shifted to online-only production. The change to online-only opened up flexibility in book lengths, color options, and other considerations.
NMP added a publishing partner in BlueToad. This change made new online editions available for NMP clients.
We had production adventures along the way. Adventures that started with the words, “Can we…” always took us in interesting directions. New articles were written on the fly to address the rapidly changing recruitment practices demanded by COVID-19 and an increasingly virtual world.
As this post goes live, there are a few follow-up projects underway. Still, it is safe to say the season was a success! Visit the Recent Works page to view the online editions of the Guides published this year.
It was a real pleasure working with all of these schools. Have a great and safe school year!
NMP has released A Career Guide for 2020 with articles from the NMP library edited for the special circumstances job seekers face during the pandemic crisis. We hope you will find this Guide useful and share it.
Article titles include “Virtual Career Fairs,” “Career Planning Checklist,” and “How to Prepare for Video Interviews” to name a few.
We’ve joined in a great new partnership with BlueToad for a digital edition of A Career Guide for 2020 offering multiple reading options. Page view allows you to read the book in a flip book, representational layout as the Guide was designed. Select content view to transform the Guide into to a fully responsive publication easily accessible across multiple devices.
Please contact NMP for help with your own print or digital publication.