Another Semester Out the Door

Guest Blogger Kate Schefer ’15

At this point in the semester I cannot help but get panicky and emotional. I panic because all my assignments I have been putting off are finally due, and I tear up because some classes I just hate to see end. With just a few more days of class left, and less than three weeks living on campus before heading home for holiday break, now is a good time for me to look back on what this semester has brought. One assignment that proved to become a highly involved endeavor was our client project for CUPID Studio, which was due in our last class.

My group worked with Dr. Thomas Arcaro, a Sociology professor here at Elon who had numerous tasks for us to undertake. From his offer, we chose to compile a book of his personal essays and to reformat the online Periclean Scholars Handbook into a print version. There were of course setbacks along the way, most dealing with miscommunication and confusion among team members, but it was an interesting project to be involved with. I attended meetings with Dr. Arcaro, collaborated with my peers to create the book in Blurb, and then took on the Handbook project myself to complete in the week before the deadline.

The Handbook was perhaps the most interesting challenge of all. When written in 10 point Times New Roman, it equaled around 46 pages. Then when I added headings, reformatted sections to start on new pages, and cataloged a table of contents, it stretched to 55 pages in total. That task alone took about seven or eight hours, though it did make the entire piece look much more professional when I went through later to add comments. Our client admitted that the Handbook was still in its formative stages, and that it had a lot of editing to go, so I only brought attention to issues that could easily be remedied or overarching problems that need to revised when an editor has time to pore over it.

In the end, though, what we managed to complete of our projects turned out really well, which surprised me as the one non-PWR student in the class. I was scared my lack of knowledge about rhetoric and working with clients would set me back, but if anything I found myself in charge of the group more often. Diving into this project helped me learn a lot about the professional book world, and as an aspiring copy editor hoping to enter the publishing house job market soon, this experience was invaluable to me. So during this Thanksgiving holiday, I quite thankful for the chance to learn about my future career through these real-life applications. It is what I have always wanted from my education.

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