Magazine On-line [fall 2012]
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Around Campus

TNotes front page

Columns becomes TNotes, improves service to campus

For decades, Columns served the Transylvania campus, first as a weekly newsletter, then as a daily online news page. After months of surveys and public forums, Columns recently underwent a full redesign and restructuring and was renamed TNotes.

TNotes is a daily news hub where anyone from Transylvania can submit posts on events, achievements, announcements, new personnel—anything the community needs to know about. Public relations associate Mollie Eblen serves as editor.

“Columns has been a great way to get Transylvania news in one place without needing to sort through wasteful fliers and dozens of emails,” Sarah Emmons, associate vice president for communications and public relations, said. “Now, with input from our campus, TNotes makes that process even better.”

The Office of Communications built the new site after taking input from students, faculty, and staff on features they would like to see added and changes they wanted from the original site. Web development manager Mariana Shochat redesigned the page, making it more modern, user friendly, and easier to read.

Gone is the page full of text, replaced with headlines that expand one at a time to display only the posts the user wants to read. Users are able to jump to different categories, and submitters can include attachments for download within the posts themselves. The site also works well on mobile phones, an increasingly important medium for students.

“We wanted to make TNotes easier to navigate, not just on computers, but also on iPhone and Android,” Shochat said. “It’s a much more user-friendly way to get information to people who need it. We have plans to continue improving TNotes from campus feedback, possibly adding features like an archive and a search, and we’re open for more suggestions.”

The name came from a campus-wide contest, where students, faculty, and staff submitted possible names for the new page. The top results were put up for an online vote, and TNotes, which was submitted by prospect research coordinator Lu-Ann Farrar, won overwhelmingly.

The full page is available only on campus, but those off campus can still read TNotes posts at It’s a good way to keep up with Transylvania events and with members of the community.

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