I took on the role of editor for a page in the RAO, the parent newsletter to let all the lovely parents know what their sons and daughters are creating at University. After the previous year of not having a massive involvement in the production of the paper, I wanted to have a bigger role. So I chose a page to do.
From my article writing for volunteering in the second year, I had a well-established relationship with the volunteering department. I decided that being a part of the voluntary page would be easier than for a page where I had no contacts for information. However, the trouble with this was getting enough information so close to the start of the year, we all agreed that it would have been easier if we had put it together later in the year because all that we were writing about was the events from the year before, or what was covered over the summer. Also, I wanted to cover volunteering week but this was not until February and the RAO had to have been completed months before. But I got there, I chose relevant (ish topics, Mount Kili was relevant, the SU Awards Ceremony was slightly out-dated but still needed to be covered). Although this was fine for the paper, it let me down in my grades because of the date…. This obviously annoyed the cr*p out of me because I wasn’t told previously the effect on my grade it would have.
I had a fair few problems with this article, as much help I got from the V&E department, and I am very grateful for this, we were unable to find pictures of the event. For one of the Award winners I could only get a photograph of them in the act of their voluntary work. But this seemed to suffice, even though I tried to come up with cheeky ways around it, I realised this wasn’t professional, grew up, moved on and started playing maturely.
The other article for the page was about Mount Kilimanjaro and students climbing it for charity. I interviewed the RAG leader for this and liaised with the events leader. She was able to give me a fair amount of photos that I could use.
Unfortunately for this page I was the only one contributing with the voluntary work, so it came down to asking someone for a story that could fill the space. I was a bit annoyed because it made my page look mismatched and not very informative. But it worked for page filler, a story about a Spanish festival coming to Coventry University by Fatima was as close to volunteering as a technology based article by another student. I had to make an executive decision about what article to use, and chose the one that got to me the quickest. All about deadlines.
In terms of InDesign, I had a fair few issues, purely because I hadn’t used it before, but it came to me, eventually, and luckily by the time I came to editing the double page spread for CU Today, I knew what I was doing. Unfortunately my voluntary page wasn’t one of my most creative, it was simplistic but did it’s job.