As technical communicators, we all know there’s a real person behind all documentation, and now middle-schoolers at Gates-Chili know that, too. On April 29, STC Rochester was represented at the G-C Careers in Demand Days by Education Manager Carmel Priore-Garlock and Chapter President Bobbi Werner.
Carmel started the presentation by giving the students a picture of the profession as a whole. What kind of training does it require? What is a typical day in the life of a technical communicator? Which local or regional colleges have programs in tech comm? What other positions can technical communicators take, and in what kinds of industries?
Next, the students really got their hands into it. Bobbi started by demonstrating a brand new product, the Welch Allyn Home Blood Pressure Monitor, the first product in the new Welch Allyn Home product line to be released in the fall of 2016. She shared the first draft of its user manual she wrote, then told students about the importance of testing and validating instructions for medical devices.
Bobbi then enlisted volunteers to “test drive” her instructions and take their own blood pressure. They eagerly volunteered and shared their feedback, clearly enjoying this hands-on part of the presentation. Bobbi also noted some challenges in following the instructions that actually resulted in changes to the manual, so the demonstration was even more valuable than anticipated.
It was a great day for the students, and another great day for bringing STC Rochester into the community!