High on the list of what Staff Council seeks to do is empower staff to enhance their lives. A big part of that is a tireless commitment to professional development and training. Several years of work on these topics resulted in Staff Council gaining limited access to Lynda.com, the web-based training service. Building off this, our previous chair, Erika Frahm, led an effort that resulted in a campus-wide license to Lynda.com. Today, staff, students, and faculty have unlimited, 24/7 access to Lynda’s online training library. There is even a Lynda app for your phone, so you can plug the headphones in for training on the go. If you have not yet set yourself up, you should do so right now. Just enter through the portal on this site: http://sites.utexas.edu/oe/.
There is a lot to love about Lynda, and I would like to share one personal story. Earlier this year I was approached about helping graduate students in my department build websites for their job market portfolios. This was not the first time I had undertaken this venture. A year or two ago I tried to create a Google site template that graduate students could use to get their online presence going. Time and again I was unsuccessful, and it was a source of great frustration. But now I had access to Lynda and I was determined to fix this.
After setting aside 95 minutes and going through the Lynda course, “Google Sites Essential Training,” with Jess Stratton, I was able to build my template that same morning and lead a tutorial the next day. Feeling less frustrated and having (hopefully!) exceeded my job expectations, this was a good day of work, and a great feeling of accomplishment. My template is not an award-winner, I am still no web expert, and not working regularly with Google sites, not everything I learned has stuck, but I know the site is at my fingertips anytime I need or want to return.
Perhaps you have stories of your own – past or future – of how Lynda.com has helped you. We would love to hear from you and consider sharing your story on our website. If you have not yet explored the site, do it now!