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A Facelift for

September 22, 2009

by Abhi Nemani
A Facelift for

Associate Vice President of Public Affairs Richard Rodner informed the student body that the college's web presence, which has been subject to criticism, is now being redesigned in a two phase process, with the first -- an aesthetic overhaul of with special attention paid to the Roberts Day School -- coming in the next few weeks. For the second phase, they hope to "rethink" the site broadly and engage more constituencies within the college; no time frame was provided for this stage. His message and some screenshots are available below. More information will be published as it becomes available; in the meantime, we look forward to hearing what you think about the screenshots and the redesign in the comments.

Dear CMC Community,

Changes to the CMC website are coming!Over the course of the past several months, we have met with many individuals and groups of faculty, staff, students, alumni and trustees to understand both the short and long-term needs for CMC’s web presence.  This not only relates to our own website, but the web at-large with many other aspects of social media.  The Office of Public Affairs and Communications, in collaboration with ITS, will be responsible for developing, updating and redesigning the CMC website.  Our primary goals for the CMC website are to:

  • Enhance CMC’s website to be more visually dynamic, relevant and engaging

  • Make the Website easier and more interesting to navigate

  • Showcase the excitement of CMC

  • Showcase our faculty, students & alumni

  • Employ multi-media features and functionality

  • Ensure we are communicating key brand messages along with a consistent visual identity

  • Target top-flight prospective students

  • Update site architecture

We are approaching this in two phases.  Phase one is an opportunity to make improvements, on an interim basis, to the navigation and visual impact within the current structure of the website.  This includes a new navigation orientation embedded throughout the entire site, and a new look for the CMC homepage and the Robert Day School website.

The website’s global navigation (previously running down the left margin) and gateways will now all be located on the top header of each page with mouse roll-over drop down menu guides.  (See screen shot below)

Each page’s local (or custom) navigation (previously running down the right margin) will now appear on the left margin thus opening up the right side of each web page giving the site a more open and less cluttered look.

The emphasis of these interim changes is to provide bolder images, messaging and distinctiveness to our website.  For the “new look” homepage, we have created several new sections that will include timely and ongoing features, daily updates of CMC in the News, highlights of upcoming events, and a Point of View area that showcases the intellectual capital of our distinguished faculty.  (See sample screen shot below.)

Also in this first phase, we will be working on enhancing other sub-sites, such as has been done with the Robert Day School of Economics and Finance as a model.  (See sample screen shot below.)

To accomplish this, I am pleased to announce that Anthony Fisher is returning to CMC as our new director of interactive design and new media production.  Along with Anthony and our new creative services graphic designer, Andrea Brake, and our talented ITS group, we have a solid team in place to implement these objectives.

Phase two of this process will be a longer-term intensive effort to rethink and redesign the entire CMC website.  This phase will involve the collaboration of many college constituents and users to engage in discussion and identification of a whole array of issues, guiding principles, features and applications, and new methods of experiencing CMC on the web as well as integrating mobile capabilities.

We look forward to beginning the planning for phase two within the next several weeks.  In the meantime, look for CMC’s new navigation, RDS site and homepage coming soon.

Richard Rodner Associate Vice President Public Affairs and Communications.

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