College website gets redesign

Students split on new design’s success

By Christian Urrutia, Assistant Photo Editor

Just as most websites have become more user friendly, Contra Costa College’s website has received an update.

In July, CCC’s website acquired a whole new look and style to accommodate requests from the community for an updated interface.

Ellen Seidler, fine and media arts department chairperson who helped design and implement the site, said, “The whole process was about streamlining our website making it attractive and inviting for potential students, current students, and members of our community.”

Business major Perla Contreras said CCC’s website is now easy to use because of its simplicity.
She said the navigation is simple to understand and displays enough info on each sub-menu to ensure clarity compared to her previous school City College of San Francisco’s website.

“I’m not tech savvy at all but the visual images help to get your attention and show you what you’re looking for,” Contreras said.

Kinesiology major Simon Carlos said, “I think it (the website) sucks, it loads slow and everything seems like it is out of place. I think for me at least I got used to the old site because I thought it was simple enough.”

Administration of justice major Jesus Banuelos simply uses the website to check messages through InSite Portal and did not think too much of the new design. He said he only uses the website to get to InSite Portal.

Color and layout design were the notable differences between the old site and the new one, as well as new ways to navigate the different pages of the website.

“The website is our portal to the public, so we want to make it easy to use,” Seidler said, who was given the task of designing the new layout.

Seidler said she looked at other college websites for inspiration but relied primarily on experience she gained from creating web pages for various Internet blogs.

“That’s why I got involved with this because I knew there was a desperate need to update the website but there were no available resources to hire someone (full time),” Seidler said.

“(Vice President Tammeil Gilkerson) spearheaded the whole plan and I had release time, which faculty members often get release time for doing various things to help different departments. I said I’d do it and we started the process last spring, so I worked all spring and worked a lot over the summer and went live at the end of June,” she said.

Gilkerson was not available for comment, as of press time Tuesday.

Technology Systems Manager James Eyestone said the redesign stemmed from the college administration being asked to redesign the site from the community and comments about outdated information.

“People couldn’t find things and could not easily find information. Navigation issues and aesthetics were some of the common problems we were trying to satisfy,” Eyestone said.

The new site can post up-to-date information, Seidler said. By constantly showing new content, the college can make the site more dynamic and attractive.

It will also list academic and community resources.

“Part of the problem is that there hasn’t been a full-time webmaster, no gatekeeper, no one person whose job it was to have a handle on the whole picture,” Seidler said.

Things are grouped together in ways that make sense and the infrastructure for the site is run through WordPress, Seidler said.