November Good News at TMCC

Screenshot of TMCC staff on a video conference.
Rebecca A. Eckland

Marketing and Communication Receives Awards

Every year, the National Council of Marketing and Public Relations recognizes the efforts of marketing and communications professionals at community colleges across the nation for their campaigns and communication strategies across various media platforms. COVID-19 and the move to online and remote operations elevated the challenges faced by communication professionals as traditional avenues of communicating information to students—say, through posters, flyers, and other handouts—lost their effectiveness. The exclusive reliance on electronic communications and social media messaging created new communication challenges, as did the sheer volume of messages, as the uncertainty caused by COVID-19 made not only the frequency but also the style of communications change. 

Despite these challenges, the TMCC MCO office rose to the occasion often working long hours to create communications strategies that kept students, faculty, and staff in the loop. Additionally, the MCO office collaborated with multiple college departments, faculty, and staff to create these award-winning communication artifacts and campaigns. Collaborators included Institutional Research, Web Services, Athletics, the Recruitment and Access Center, the TMCC Foundation, as well as students, faculty, and staff across several college divisions and departments who share their experiences and stories with our community through our varied communication channels.

These efforts did not go unnoticed: NCMPR Awarded TMCC with nine Medallions this year. “I couldn’t be prouder of our Marketing and Communications Office for their dedication and hard work this year,” said Dr. Karin Hilgersom. “This department handles everything from crisis communications to social media for our institution, and to be recognized across so many communication platforms really speaks to the professionalism and excellence of each and every member of this team.”

Medallions are awarded in three tiers like Olympic Medals: Gold, Silver and Bronze. TMCC is included in District 6, which includes community colleges in Arizona, California, Hawaii, Nevada, Utah, the Commonwealth of Northern Marshall Islands and the Territory of Guam.

The Medallions Awarded to TMCC this year included: 

  • Gold – Communication Success Story or Crisis Communications – COVID-19 Communications
  • Gold – Social Media or Online Marketing Campaign – My2020GradStory
  • Silver – Communication Success Story or Crisis Communications – Soccer Kick Off 2019
  • Silver – Book or Specialty Publication – TMCC Facts Pocket Guide Fall 2019 
  • Silver – Social Media – TMCC Instagram
  • Silver – Successful Recruitment or Marketing Program – Virtual Open House
  • Bronze – Social Media or Online Marketing Campaign - TMCC Voices
  • Bronze – Indoor Signage/Displays – TMCC Foundation wall panels
  • Bronze – Excellence in Writing – TMCC Tales of the Strange, Unexpected or Unexplained

"At most colleges, Institutional Research is the analytical arm of the institution, and so our office has been producing numbers like those used in the ‘Facts Pocket Guide’ for many years.  But these stand-alone numbers can be dry and hard to digest.  TMCC's Marketing professionals are our chief storytellers.  Working with their graphic designer on this project, our two offices were able to connect the dots between data/analytics and TMCC's ‘story’ in a compelling way that the numbers alone could never do," said Cheryl Scott, Director of Institutional Research. 

Moving forward, the Marketing and Communications Office will continue to cover college events and seek effective communication strategies to keep students, faculty and staff not only connected but engaged in the TMCC community.

TMCC Graduates and Emeritus Faculty Create Art

The visual arts have an established presence at TMCC, inspired by the dedication of our faculty in the visual arts department, who are practitioners of their art as well as educators. This passion for the arts fostered at the College has extended in the community where both emeritus faculty and our graduates are sharing their art with the world. 

Former TMCC Galleries Curator and Emeritus Art Professor Nolan Preece recently presented a virtual gallery solo exhibition of his work, which included his chemigrams, photograms, and cliches-verre for the Walter Wickiser Gallery in New York City. Starting Nov. 14, Preece’s work will also be on exhibit at the Stremmel Gallery in Reno.

Preece’s work in “chemigrams” is derived by a process used by Pierre Cordier in 1956, which combined “the physics of painting and the chemistry of photography. Preece adapted this technique, using acrylic paint—that is less toxic than oil— that is painted on photographic paper. These are then scanned and printed. 

Preece likens his work to photographer Ansel Adams’ description of a photograph as a performance of its negative’s “score.”  The exhibit at Stremmel Gallery will be up throughout the month of November, with a safe all-day opening on Nov. 14.

Former TMCC English Language Learner (ELL) student Ivette Valenzuela designed this year’s ArtTown Poster. Valenzuela, who studied design in her native Mexico, was also an artist and designer for cultural events for the ministry of culture in her home state of Sonora. While she attended TMCC ELL classes, she also attended several ArtTown events. 

According to ELL Instructor and Specialist Nora Frisch, Valenzuela was inspired by these events. “She attended several ArtTown events and she had hoped one day to have the chance to design the poster. That came true for her in 2020.”

According to Frisch, the focus of Valenzuela’s poster was the joy that art inspires. “People are happier when their senses are stimulated when enjoying a symphony, a good film, or even by movements created for a simple dance,” said Valenzuela, who explained that her poster started by uniting graphic techniques of digital and hand-drawn elements. 

Valenzuela’s designs, including the 2020 ArtTown poster, can be found on her website and Valenzuela describes her process of creating the poster in this video.