Welcome to a New Program Year: A Letter from the President

by Pat MartzP Martz Feb 2013

We had our Council and Planning meeting at Washtenaw Community College on Sunday, September 14, so I would like to fill you in on some of our plans for the year. Most of our discussions revolved around planning the program year, but we also discussed tweaking the fee structure and volunteer opportunities.

While this is my chance to talk to you, please feel free to contact me with ideas or questions.

Non-chapter Members Take Note!

If you are not a chapter or national member, please join us at one or more of our networking events to learn more about our local chapter. We would love to meet you, discuss your goals, and talk about how our organization can help you towards your goals.

If you are an STC member and decide to join the Southeastern Michigan chapter, choose STC/SM as your local chapter when you renew. You can join or renew now, add us as your chapter, and attend programs at the chapter members’ rate from now until December 31, 2015.

For more information about chapter membership, go to STC’s Membership FAQs page; the Community Questions section is about halfway down.

STC-SM’s Programs and Events Are Planned for 2014–2015

We are very excited by the mix of networking events and programs this year, and we hope you will join us at as many as you can. If you are working on digital products you will find a lot to think about. If you are working on presenting yourself or your ideas, you will find opportunities to practice—at our networking events. Please check our Upcoming Events page to see what we have planned; as details are firmed up, information will be added.

Fee Structure Tweaked

Did you know that when you pay for a chapter membership in addition to your national membership, $15 of that $25 comes right back to the chapter as financial support? The rest may be retained by national headquarters, but it is used to provide operational support to local chapters through leadership training, support for administrative tasks, and even the availability of Adobe Connect for virtual meetings.

Our next major STC-housekeeping task will be to send our 2014–2015 budget to national headquarters, so we revisited our fee structure as well as the programming. We had two major goals:

  • Minimize roadblocks to student participation.
  • Encourage STC members who are not chapter members to become chapter members.

Membership categories.

We are taking a trust-but-verify approach.
Chapter members, members of organizations with reciprocity, and special chapter guests.
Regular STC/SM chapter members and members of UXPA, Michigan CHI, and USTD pay as chapter members.

Employees of the company providing the program venue are considered special guests of the chapter, and also pay the member’s rate; please bring your work ID.

Non-chapter members.
Non-chapter members pay more, but we would be delighted to have you join our chapter. All you have to do is choose us as your local chapter when you renew your STC membership.

Students.
Students must present a current valid student ID. Students do not need to be majoring in technical communication, as technical communication is about interpreting and passing on any type of specialized information.

Programming categories.

Networking events.
All networking events are free, but registration is required. Participants take care of their own food and drink purchases, unless we specify otherwise. For example, appetizers were paid for by the co-hosts of last year’s holiday mixer.

Regular program meetings.
There will always be water and light snacks available during pre-program networking.

The fees for regular evening programs are as follows:

  • Members: $10
  • Non-members: $20
  • Students: Free

Half-day workshops.

We have one workshop planned for March 2015 that may be a half-day event if the presenters feel that the additional time would give our attendees the best experience.

A half-day program will include a light meal such as fruit, muffins or bagels, and spreads for an early program, or fruit or salad and pizza for one that straddles lunchtime.

The fees for half-day workshops are as follows:

  • Members: $20
  • Non-members: $40
  • Students: $5

Volunteer Opportunities, Current and Future

We have a few volunteer vacancies now, and others coming up later. If you would like more information about any of these positions, please contact me. I will pass your name on to the correct person.

Current vacancies.

Educational Liaison. The professional liaison is STC/SM’s link to the education community.
Archivist/Historian.

Upcoming vacancies.

Ideally, if you could step in this fall, the people currently holding these positions can train you and get you comfortable in your new role.

Greeter: need by June 30, 2015, but sooner would be better. Check people in at events: check student IDs and the chapter member list. Schmooze. What a terrific way to meet people.

Associate Newsletter Editor: need by January 1, 2015. This is a great opportunity to get comfortable with WordPress and to hone your copyediting skills.

Professional Liaison: need by June 1, 2015. The professional liaison is STC/SM’s link to the business community.

One thought on “Welcome to a New Program Year: A Letter from the President”

  1. Great first letter, Madam President. Sounds like a lot of good things in the coming year.

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