Yearbook advisers welcomed to K.C. at opening of Academy

Written by Evan Blackwell, CJE

Advisers from as far as the East and West coasts arrived in Kansas City on Monday morning for the opening session of Walsworth’s annual Adviser Academy summer workshop.

The group was welcomed to town by Alex Blackwell, Walsworth’s director of yearbook marketing, who woke the crowd up by polling the audience to ask which advisers were new to the job, and which advisers were experienced vets working on their 11th yearbook or more.

“You could be anywhere you wanted to be right now on your summer vacation, and you’re here,” said Blackwell. “That tells me you’re committed to the yearbook and you’re committed to your kids.”

Walsworth President Don Walsworth addressed the group and urged them to understand that the yearbook industry will continue to thrive, but not without continued dedication from the group in the room – the advisers.

“Kids today want instant gratification. I don’t think a book of memories is ever going to go away, but it’s important for the kids to understand the relevance right now,” said Walsworth. “It’s important that everyone in this room realize – the adviser has to be the main driver in the school for promoting the yearbook.”

Walsworth also pointed out that social media is not a way to replace the yearbook, but actually a tool to enhance promotion of the yearbook, and stressed that inclusion with the yearbook’s coverage was extremely important.

Evan Blackwell, CJE
Evan Blackwell, CJE

Evan Blackwell, CJE, is a Web Content Specialist for walsworthyearbooks.com and yearbookhelp.com, as well as a regular contributor to Idea File magazine. He's been a writer and editor for Walsworth Yearbooks for the past 13 years, and is the author of the Yearbook Suite's "The Art of the Interview" unit. Prior to joining Walsworth, Blackwell spent five years as an award-winning newspaper and magazine journalist. He holds a bachelor’s degree in journalism from the University of Kansas.