The Society for Technical Communication (STC) is an international professional society for the advancement of the theory and practice of technical communication. It has hundreds of local chapters (also known as 'communities.'
The Society for Technical Communication (STC) announced today that certification for the technical communication field has been approved. Within the next year, technical communicators will be able to attain certification in their profession.
SIGs exist to serve specialized needs within the greater organization. Special Interest Groups (SIGs) and Professional Interest Committees (PICs) are a tool by which the local chapters can serve a diverse range of special interests, boosting chapter membership. The Lone Star Chapter (Dallas/Fort Worth) began hosting SIG meetings three years ago. Currently, with four active SIGs, we are hosting an additional 100 to 200 members per month. This is how we built our SIGs to promote membership in STC. In the spring of 1990, a group of disgruntled contractors began to meet formally to discuss dissatisfaction with insurance plans for independents available through the society. We had been meeting informally for many years, to discuss the job market, rates available, and generally to gossip. We call it networking. personal contact or the sudden ice storm we had that night attendance was down significantly. From that point, we have kept a mailing list updated from our sign-in sheets, and sent postcard reminders about each meeting.
Companies are reducing their training budgets. During these austere times, the technical writer must get more creative than ever to participate in the annual conference. An informal survey of attendees at the 50th Annual Conference in Dallas showed that many people paid their own way to the conference. There are numerous ways to reduce the cost to attend the conference.
This paper is an explanation of a low-cost and high-fun method used by the Lone Star Chapter to recognize officers and committee managers for their work during the past year.
Developing a strong student STC chapter is a challenging and rewarding experience. Those of us who are involved in this process can certainly benefit from sharing our ideas in a directed workshop atmosphere. Participants will exchange ideas and formulate working strategies for the development, maintenance, and growth of a student chapter.
Collaboration between academic programs and STC chapters builds a sense of community and relevance for all participants. Neither academic programs or professional chapters by themselves provide sufficient educational or professional development opportunities. Working together helps inform faculty and students about workplace trends, helps introduce students to their future professional opportunities, and provides chapter members and their companies and organizations with access to up-to-date research and to students before they go on the job market.
Perhaps the time has come to wrap up the STC and let a new organisation grow from the ashes. Those who are interested, and who believe our profession needs such an organisation will rally round and rebuild something. If there is not enough interest then perhaps that is a further indication that the STC has had its time.
he recognition activities of STC generate a key component of the value provided to its members. Establishing a Technical Communication Week celebration can help boost your community’s profile and the perceived value of our work.
Chapter seminars help members by providing current technical communication information, significant additional chapter funding, recruitment of new members, and a proving ground for new leaders. Seminars need a definite organization and leaders need clearly defined responsibilities and authorities. Seminars must provide useful relevant information, either focused or diverse, delivered effectively by skilled speakers. Seminars are not expanded monthly meetings; they must be quiet properly equipped pleasant facilities. Seminar finances must be balanced to provide the desired surplus, or the sting of lost funds will linger long after the sweet success of a stimulating program is forgotten.
Every chapter relies on volunteers for its success. The secret to successful chapters, then, starts with recruiting the right people, training them well, delegating to them carefully, nurturing them along the way, and rewarding them for a job well done.
STC has been challenged by the changing economy and the evolving nature of our work and career development. These challenges have required Society leaders to look carefully into how the STC should change to better serve a diverse and global membership.
Boston, one of the founding chapters of STC, has a distinguished 50-year record of accomplishments. Boston recently won its third consecutive Chapter of Achievement award. We strive to consistently provide an outstanding level and value of services to our members.
This interim report shows that the research program sponsored by STC in its publications is becoming more annecdotal each year, relying less and less on research for support of its generalizations.
In an effort to promote and encourage an interest in the field of technical communication through academic/professional relationships, the New York Metro Chapter has developed a mentoring pilot program with Fairleigh Dickinson University (FDU) in Madison, New Jersey. The chapter, along with Dr. Michael B. Goodman, Director of FDU’s M.A. program in Corporate and Organizational Communication, coordinated their efforts to select members who can serve as role models for students interested in this field.
There was a time when organizations did offer a value proposition. Once upon a time, there was some prestige attached to being part of a professional organization. Being a member marked you as a professional. The potential was there for membership in an organization to open a more than a few doors. And organizations offered training, courses, information, and even pointers to jobs that you couldn’t find anywhere else. The Web, though, hasn’t just leveled the playing field. The Web has flattened the playing field, paved it over, and moved the goal posts.
You don’t have to be an officer to benefit professionally from your local STC chapter meetings. Start attending your local chapter meetings and discover the many forms of buried treasure. These treasures will result in a new perspective to your writing, an increased library of professional resources, professional writers being hired at your workplace, and the chance to view the “Best of Show” writing. You can reap rewards such as these with a small investment of personal time.
You don't have to be an officer to benefit professionally from your local STC chapter meetings. Start attending your local chapter meetings and discover the many forms of buried treasure. These treasures will result in a new perspective of your writing, an increased library of professional resources, professional writers being hired at your workplace, and the chance to view the 'Best of Show' writing. You can reap rewards such as these with a small investment of personal time.
Both old hands and newcomers can create a plan to do a presentation at the next STC Annual Conference. Simply follow this 5-step process: (1) Understand the call for proposals. (2) Discover possible topics to develop. (3) Identify gifts--something of value--to give your audience in your presentation and in your paper (if you do one). (4) Think of appealing gift wraps to attract your hearers and readers. (5) Prepare a thorough proposal for the Program Committee. This process works best in a workshop where the participants can form a critical mass for creative excitement, help one another generate ideas--and have fun!
Both old hands and newcomers can create a plan to do a presentation at the next STC Annual Conference. Simply follow this 5-step process: (1) Understand the call for papers. (2) Discover possible topics to develop. (3) Identify gifts—something of value—to give your audience in your presentation and in your paper (if you do one). (4) Think of interesting gift wraps to attract your hearers and readers. (5) Prepare a complete proposal for the Program Committee. This process works best in a workshop where the participants can form a critical muss for creative excitement, help one another generate ideas—and have fun!
Recently, I have begun to feel that there is not much value left in STC as it stands today, and it is in need of a radical overhaul in order to survive. I believe that outside the rarefied atmosphere of the STC Board and Head Office, this view is widely shared.
Members often ask what advantages they receive for their membership dollars. The answer is so obvious we sometimes fail to see it. With apologies to the kind souls at MasterCard, a few thoughts on the value of your STC membership.
STC supports students through scholarships, the honor fraternities, and recognition of student chapter achievements. STC members provide a network for information and contacts for employment. The academic community can strengthen its ties to STC by encouraging students to apply for the awards and recognitions and to take advantage of the network of professionals.
These focus groups continue the dialogue begun in focus groups organized by Ken Rainey and Katherine Staples, Education and Research PIC, at the 1993 annual conference in Dallas. Participants discussed the topic of how partnerships among the Society, business and industry, and colleges and universitates could strengthen academic programs in technical communication, empower the profession, and promote research.