LU launches redesigned website

LU+launches+redesigned+website

Niklas Dehlwes | Reporter
Sept. 13, 2016; 7 a.m.

The new home page of the Lindenwood website, which launched this week after months of preparation.
Photo courtesy of Scott Queen 

The new Lindenwood website will launch this week and will be “dramatically different” from the current version of lindenwood.edu, said T.J. Rains, vice president for Information Technology.

“A website is the most important tool to present your product,” Scott Queen, executive director of marketing and communications said.

The new website will be cleaner and user-friendly, Rains said, and will allow students, staff and faculty to see everything happening on campus with one click.

Regardless if it’s sports, Greek Life, Lindenwood Student Government Association or Campus Activity Board, under the column “Events,” students can find any event in chronological order. The system even lets students track past events, all the way back to fall 2013.
A focus group of 15 people, along with Rains and Queen, helped to create the new website.

Queen said the idea of changing the layout of the website started after he heard students complain about it. He and Rains then talked to President Michael Shonrock to propose the idea for a new website.

“After that day, things evolved very quickly,” Rains said.

In December 2015, the school reached an agreement with Fastspot, a company from Baltimore that specializes in creating websites.
A Fastspot team was brought to campus to find out about the expectations of faculty and students and to gather suggestions and get as much information as possible about campus life. The visit was done in the middle of January 2016, and afterward, the information setup for the website began.

The new School of Arts, Media and Communcations page on lindenwood.edu.
Photo courtesy of Scott Queen

The final design was finished around April 1, which was the time the company started editing footage and content for the website, Queen said. To follow this, a new web team, consisting of four people, was formed to manage the website and keep it updated. A new website was also created for the Belleville campus, Rains said.

Both websites were built with “an emphasis on video and current photography that reflect our vibrant campus and the numerous activities and events we have going on” both at Lindenwood’s St. Charles and Belleville campuses, Queens said.

“We saw the video and knew immediately that this was what we wanted to do,” Rains said.

Scenes on the video range from students rushing down halls to scenes of the lake behind Pfremmer and Reynolds.  Queen said Lindenwood University is the product and the website tries to sell it to as many students as possible.

“The website is geared toward prospective and current students and their experience,” he said.

Before the target launch date on Sept. 14, Rains said that final touches need to be made by finishing “the content migration from the current site to the new site” and “completing the final server migration.”

Rains said he is looking forward to the launch and “can’t wait to see the students’ feedback.” Shonrock said he has been impressed by what he’s seen.

“The only word I can use is awesome,” he said. “I know I say this a lot, but it really is like no other.”