Thank You, Website
By Sophia Jordan '19, Head of Media
May 28, 2019
For those of you that don’t know, I am Sophia Jordan and I have created this website over the course of this school year.
This website has been an interesting and tough undertaking that will forever be a work in process (at least under my standards). I apologize to our viewers (and Makeda and Helen) about changing the homepage layout like five times. Even though creating this was frustrating, stressful, brought-out-my-intense-perfectionism, etc., if given the chance, I would do it all over again, and I only wish I had a few more years to develop it. So, in the first and last article I have ever actually written for this newspaper, I would like to share a few things.
First of all, how this website came to be. I have always been interested in design and web-related things. But, over my junior year in an English class, I discovered that I really enjoy producing film. More specifically, making documentaries, etc. I wanted to do more of this kind of work in a class and Mr. Wenger (my English teacher at the time) suggested I look to the newspaper class to pursue this interest. Though I found that the newspaper did not really have a media department, meaning that there was nowhere to share my interests in producing film. I asked the future editors (Makeda and Helen) and Mrs. McElroy if maybe a website could solve this problem.
Disclaimer: I have never actually created a website before this. Maybe I did once with a friend when I was like 11 and we were selling bracelets for a dollar, but that was about it. I have always been good with computers and technology, like I am my family’s “IT support.” LOL. So, I offered to create the website and run it for awhile, while possibly continuing to pursue my interests in producing. Who knew that designing this and making it look as cool and professional possible would be my sole focus here.
Second, creating the website itself. The first thing I had to do was choose a platform. I chose Wix because they had the option to start with a blank slate. I could start it completely from scratch. No Wix chosen template, no real guidelines, nothing. I could do anything with it. Which, in itself was daunting and exciting at the same time. Now, I always keep my first homepage hidden in my workplace site so that I can see how far I’ve come from that first one I made here. Literally fake it til you make it was my strategy on this project.
Overtime, I learned how Wix works. The special features it has, the basic features it does NOT have (Wix I’m praying, please get wrap text!!!), and the site finally had a flow. In the beginning, the website was an archive, if people didn’t have the real paper version, they could see articles on the website. Or, if they wanted to see issues from previous years they could look at the archives page I created where I put all of the PDF’s of issues dating all the way back to 2014. I did other things like that with the Halos and Horns page, which I thought was pretty cool how you could see what SSSAS thought was trending when we, seniors, were in eighth grade. Then, I realized I wanted to do other things with the website that would not be printed in the print issue.
For example, Ben Silverman’s insightful film reviews page, and Adam Fischer’s hilarious food reviews. We started getting other featured articles from the student body, and that is what I wanted the newspaper to become. Our staff is so very talented and the articles they have written this year are amazing, though unfortunately not everyone can fit D period newspaper into their schedule. NOTE TO ANYONE WHO HAS ANY INTEREST THEY WANT TO SHARE WITH THE STUDENT BODY: SHARE IT WITH THE NEWSPAPER! Literally, we can create a page for you, like I did for Ben and Adam to share what they are passionate about.
Lastly, I’d like to say thank you. Thank you Mr. Wenger for suggesting I come join the newspaper. Thank you Mrs. McElroy for giving me the freedom to create one of the most productive projects I have ever done. Thank you Makeda and Helen for helping me with this website when I was in crunch time, and all the advice about its design (and for putting up with my perfectionism, love y’all). Thank you to our rocking awesome newspaper staff who plugged in all those links and shared jpegs! Good luck with everything going forward. Most of all, thank you website for showing me how much one can do with just a blank slate. It’s been a pleasure.
As I am about to graduate in a few days, I’d like to make a note to my successor Ryan Vuono (yay!) and all heads of the website going forward: 1. Never hesitate to contact me if you have any questions. 2. Mrs. McElroy is always right. 3. I know Wix can be frustrating at times (you will want to crush its soul), but don’t worry the next day you’ll be saying you love it. 4. Have fun with it! There is so much more to explore.