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The Fellow Journal: Navigating website platforms and acquiring new knowledge

Graphic by Ashley Abbey, Graduate Assistant of Student & Client Services

By: Leah Kemper

Since June 2020, I have been working for O’Pake as a marketing and communications Fellow as I am a senior at Alvernia University majoring in marketing with a minor in communications. I have learned so much this year working for O’Pake, and have been able to gain real-world work experience.  

During the Spring 2021 semester, I also started an internship with O’Pake where I have been able to gain class credit for my work. Increasing my hours and working 17 to 20 hours a week has allowed me to take on more interesting projects and learn even more. For example, I am a member of the External Communications Committee (ECC) as a visual communicator and content developer. With ECC, I have developed content for O’Pake’s newsletter, social media posts, and blogs. I enjoyed working on developing content and I am glad I had the opportunity to be a part of the ECC.    

Additionally, I was given the opportunity to work on websites for clients. Prior to this role, I had no previous experience working on websites. I was slightly nervous starting my first website; however, I was excited about the opportunity. The first website I worked on was for Entrepreneurs’ Connection (EC), which is a community of forward-thinking entrepreneurs dedicated to enhancing and promoting business relationships through shared strategy and mastermind.  

I started working on this project in October where the original plan was to redesign pages of the site using WordPress, which was the platform that the EC used at the time. I began the project by creating new pages and selecting a layout that worked well for the website’s purpose. Every Tuesday, I had meetings with Michelle Lehman, Director of Student and Client Services, and Chuck Holder, EC president, where we discussed the website updates. I did not have any prior WordPress experience before starting this project, so there was a learning curve.   

However, Michelle and I presented the idea of using a different website platform, Wix, to Chuck, during one of those meetings. Why? Wix is an easy-to-use site builder with flexible designs, ideal for small businesses and member websites. WordPress requires more technical knowledge and code for an interactive experience. Since EC will be managing the website and encouraging member interaction, we recommended that Wix should be used as the design platform.  

With that, he agreed that it would be a good idea to make the change and, starting in January, we made the switch. I had never used Wix before either, so I learned how to use this platform with the help of Michelle and watching training videos on YouTube. Wix was much easier to use, so it did not take me too long to learn house to use this design platform. I am glad I had this experience of building a website using WordPress and Wix. Working on the EC website was fun. It required creativity on my end, and Wix was perfect for that.  

To learn more about EC and to check out the final design, visit their website at https://www.entrepreneursconnection.us/.  

Here are a couple of screenshots of the website I created for EC: 

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