10 Tips to Help You Survive Your First Year as Yearbook Adviser

10 Tips to Help You Survive Your First Year as Yearbook Adviser
  1. Since nobody at your school does what you do, collaborate with other yearbook advisers whenever you get the chance. Join your state’s scholastic journalism organization and utilize your yearbook rep. Don’t isolate yourself.
  1. Right away, take pictures and sell yearbooks.
  1. Set high expectations, but remember they are just kids.
  1. No matter what, though, keep in mind that you can’t do this all by yourself. Your yearbook staff will have to put in the time for the book they want.
  1. Your yearbook does not have to win an award in your first year as an adviser. In my first year, we focused on photography. We had awful captions and minimal copy. We worked on those later.
  1. Celebrate. Have fun. Laugh at yourself when necessary and appropriate. Reward your staff. Food is a great motivator.
  1. Set your own deadlines about two weeks before the real deadline.
  1. Brag about your accomplishments. Tell your principal (and the local newspaper) how awesome your kids are doing. If you do have issues, remember, what happens in yearbook stays in yearbook.
  1. Attend a workshop. If you missed the summer workshop, look for a fall workshop. If you can’t attend with students, go by yourself.
  1. Remember that every year is a fresh start. Every yearbook should represent the year it is printed and should be the work of the students who worked on it. Listen to “We’ve always done it this way,” but then do what works for you and your staff in your year.

Julie Mancini

Yearbook Adviser
Dunnellon (FL) HS

I am an old cat lady who loves spontaneity, but my last six cars have been Honda Accords. In fact, I currently own one for work and one for play.
Julie Mancini

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