Staying Engaged

Story by Barry Shiller


In early 2005, we began a makeover of this magazine. The goal was a publication that, through engaging content and a visually appealing design, fully expresses the relevance and vitality of Saint Mary's College to its alumni and many friends. Fifteen months and four issues later, we've been reflecting on how the magazine is evolving and how it can be further improved. Here's a snapshot of things as we see them:

As we'd hoped, readers are willingly sharing their thoughts. While much of it is positive, we need and welcome critical input. We also covet story ideas, corrections, and personal reflections, some of which may be saved for future issues, based on space availability, timing, and other factors. So, if your input has yet to appear in print, don't give up hope.

We've also learned to expect the unexpected. Chris Major ‘83 wrote last fall to reflect on how much Brother Mel Anderson, the College's 26th president, had had an impact on his life as a student. Chris also enclosed a check for $50 and wryly suggested that he'd contribute another $50 if Brother Mel's smiling face again graced this magazine. Thus spawned the Brother Mel 50-buck Club, to which Chris and other alums have since contributed.

Reader input has also led us to other enhancements to look, feel, and content. We're planning longer feature stories with room for more photos and other imagery. The Quad and Arcade sections continue to be refined. We're more clearly highlighting opportunities for readers to take advantage of related content on the College Web site, and for alumni to connect in the Jerome online community and at special events. Plans are in the works for a formal reader survey.

Finally, a personal request: I consider it an especially good day when we need more space for reader letters, e-mails, and Gael Glimpses. So, please let us know where you are, and how you're doing. And let us know how we're doing, too.