There's Life Beyond the Four-Year University

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Presentation on challenges and opportunities for working with professional and graduate schools. Made at HighEdWeb 2012 with Aaron Rester of the University of Chicago School of Law.

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There's Life Beyond the Four-Year University

  1. 1. There’s Life Beyond the Four-Year University http://www.flickr.com/photos/katsmykphotography/7900794370/ #mpd6 #heweb12 Aaron Rester and Tonya Oaks SmithTuesday, October 9, 12AARON
  2. 2. Some problems = same, same #mpd6 #heweb12 Shari Erwin, Aaron Rester, and Tonya Oaks Smith http://www.flickr.com/photos/jdhancock/6216677689/Tuesday, October 9, 12AARONAttracting quality studentsFunding cutsAchieving recognition and rankings in an ever expanding market
  3. 3. Some problems =/= same, same #mpd6 #heweb12 Shari Erwin, Aaron Rester, and Tonya Oaks Smith http://www.flickr.com/photos/hollytroschuk/8017121254/Tuesday, October 9, 12i TONYAntegrating our particular communications needs and goals with those of a parent institutiona student-base that is perhaps more skeptical about traditional marketing techniquesour prospective students are already familiar with many higher ed processeswe can generally spend less time worrying about marketing to parents
  4. 4. What it do? #mpd6 #heweb12 Shari Erwin, Aaron Rester, and Tonya Oaks Smith http://www.flickr.com/photos/danielpfleming/6296485331/Tuesday, October 9, 12• TONYA• Who are we?• Who are you?• How did this come to be?• Why is this important?• Intrastructural conflict• Interstructural conflict• Audience conflict
  5. 5. There’s Life Beyond @aaronrester the inFour-Year University • Worked higher ed web since graduating from Oberlin College in 1999 • Worked for central communications, small research center, and professional school • Career highlight: Put together "The Man in #000000" band at #heweb11 #mpd6 #heweb12 Shari Erwin, Aaron Rester, and Tonya Oaks Smith Photo by @onthelevelTuesday, October 9, 12AARON
  6. 6. There’s Life Beyond @UChicagoLaw the Four-Year University • No. 5 ranked law school in USNWR (not that we care, officially) • 600 students, about 50 full-time faculty (one of smallest among peer institutions) • Staff of four provides print, web, and consultation support for: Alumni Relations & Development, Admissions, Career Services, Clinical Programs, Deans Office, Events & Conferences, Individual Faculty Projects, Institute for Law & Economics, Student Services #mpd6 #heweb12 Shari Erwin, Aaron Rester, and Tonya Oaks SmithTuesday, October 9, 12AARON
  7. 7. @marleysmom • Communications director at the UALR William H. Bowen School of Law • Worked as a reporter, internal comm for private company, for central communications, and professional school • Ambition: Become a true conquistador in fabulous shoes Photo by @radiofreegeorgy #mpd6 #heweb12 @marleysmom by @radiofreegeorgyTuesday, October 9, 12TONYA
  8. 8. There’s Life Beyond @bowenlaw the Four-Year University • No. 9 ranked legal writing WILLIAM H. BOWEN program, Top 50 PT program SCHOOL OF LAW (we DO care, officially) • 500 students, about 30 full-time faculty • Staff of one (me!) provides print, web, and consultation support for: Alumni Relations & Development, Admissions, Career Services, Clinical Programs, Deans Office, Events & Conferences, Student Services, three journals, and whatever else pops up #mpd6 #heweb12 Shari Erwin, Aaron Rester, and Tonya Oaks SmithTuesday, October 9, 12TONYA
  9. 9. Who are you? http://www.flickr.com/photos/highedweb/2922852848/in/photostream #mpd6 #heweb12Tuesday, October 9, 12 TONYA Technical or marketing/communication? Both? Main campus or specialty school? Community colleges or special schools?
  10. 10. How did this come to be? http://www.flickr.com/photos/highedweb/5090342543/in/photostream #mpd6 #heweb12Tuesday, October 9, 12AARON- years of attending conference sessions that only marginally addressed our audiences- recognition that our mission overlaps (but is not identical) with central comm. offices- wondering if we and those like us are missing out on valuable information sharing opportunitiesSpecialized conferences for those like us are often missing granular approaches or specialized technical approaches - frequently it’s only the 30K feet view
  11. 11. Why does it matter? •Help main campus folks understand why these things are important to us •Create system of support and understanding •Perhaps create another track within the HighEdWeb world http://www.flickr.com/photos/highedweb/5072754862/in/photostream #mpd6 #heweb12Tuesday, October 9, 12AARON
  12. 12. Problem 1 Intrastructural conflict • Small units tend to have smaller budgets/ staffs than central communication teams but often asked to do similar tasks • Often set up on client services model (no charge-back) • Increased demand from other departments not usually accompanied by additional resources http://www.flickr.com/photos/buehlerphoto/491135197/in/photostream #mpd6 #heweb12Tuesday, October 9, 12AARON(what happens "within the building")-
  13. 13. Problem 1 At Chicago... • Creation of new Institute for Law & Economics • Projects increase, staff does not http://www.flickr.com/photos/buehlerphoto/491135197/in/photostream #mpd6 #heweb12Tuesday, October 9, 12AARON
  14. 14. Problem 1 At Bowen... • One communication person reports directly to the dean • Internal and external communication in all media and for six assistant deans http://www.flickr.com/photos/buehlerphoto/491135197/in/photostream #mpd6 #heweb12Tuesday, October 9, 12TONYABecause we don’t have a charge-back system in place, folks are not aware of the toll their missing deadlines andconstant changes on production items takes on my ability to deliver good customer service.Enter - education on how the process works in the real world - when you have to pay someone for every littlechange order. Also, I defined a process that people must follow in order to get work done.
  15. 15. Talk back time • What are your battles over resources? • How do you help others understand how to use your office better? http://www.flickr.com/photos/buehlerphoto/491135197/in/photostream #mpd6 #heweb12Tuesday, October 9, 12TONYA
  16. 16. Problem 2 Interstructural conflict • Separate but entwined brands • Too much - or too little - guidance from main campus level • Demands of stakeholder groups to separate from main brand http://mdivah.blogspot.com/2012/04/venn-diagram-communities.html #mpd6 #heweb12Tuesday, October 9, 12TONYA
  17. 17. Problem 2 At Bowen... • Alumni base doesn’t want to be associated with the University of Arkansas at Little Rock, preferring to call themselves “Bowen grads” http://mdivah.blogspot.com/2012/04/venn-diagram-communities.html #mpd6 #heweb12Tuesday, October 9, 12TONYATRuth be told, the integration of Bowen with UALR hurts us with USNWR voters and our alumni base. Solution -promote the “Bowen brand” to those folks who need to remember we’re different from UA. And help our currentstudents understand the importance of staying within the University brand for their student org things. Teachingappreciation early will help us later on with branding and alumni.
  18. 18. Problem 2 At Chicago... • University revamped identity guidelines (typefaces, logo) • Campus-wide campaign questions re: imaging, messaging http://mdivah.blogspot.com/2012/04/venn-diagram-communities.html #mpd6 #heweb12Tuesday, October 9, 12AARON
  19. 19. Talk back time • Do your audiences agree on branding from main campus? • Is there confusion about branding of institutes, programs, symposia? http://mdivah.blogspot.com/2012/04/venn-diagram-communities.html #mpd6 #heweb12Tuesday, October 9, 12AARON
  20. 20. Problem 3 Audience conflict • Super-specific audiences • Multiple audiences • Peer institutions and reputation http://www.connectioncafe.com/posts/2011/08-august/my-audience-is-my-community.html #mpd6 #heweb12Tuesday, October 9, 12AARON
  21. 21. Problem 3 At Chicago... • Admissions/development audiences very different • Using communications intended for one audience to speak to another http://www.connectioncafe.com/posts/2011/08-august/my-audience-is-my-community.html #mpd6 #heweb12Tuesday, October 9, 12AARON- fighting “where fun comes to die” with prospectives vs. nurturing with alums- turning alumni magazine into “law porn”
  22. 22. Problem 3 At Bowen... • Professors not used to communication that is not academic-style • Community as a whole not used to marketing and promotion of the school http://www.connectioncafe.com/posts/2011/08-august/my-audience-is-my-community.html #mpd6 #heweb12Tuesday, October 9, 12TONYA
  23. 23. Talk back time • How do you explain to one audience the importance of communicating with other audiences? • How can you justify the use of new media, which many academics can be wary of? http://www.connectioncafe.com/posts/2011/08-august/my-audience-is-my-community.html #mpd6 #heweb12Tuesday, October 9, 12TONYA
  24. 24. Wrap it up http://www.flickr.com/photos/jeremy_dennis/4217349446/ #mpd6 #heweb12Tuesday, October 9, 12Duo
  25. 25. Get with us Aaron Rester arester@uchicago.edu @aaronrester 773.702.4782 Tonya Oaks Smith tosmith@ualr.edu @marleysmom 501.324.9896Tuesday, October 9, 12DUO

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