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February 2016 | Issue #40
Current Releases: SM 8.0.034 (1/18) | AW 3.5.025 (12/11)
ACEware Systems Newsletter - Information to Run Your Program
ACEware Employee Spotlight: Lindsey Lieberman
This month, we're highlighting Lindsey Lieberman as our ACEware staff spotlight.
Lindsey started working as a User Support Specialist three years ago. In addition to supporting over forty schools, she does ACEweb makeovers.

Prior to working for ACEware, Lindsey received a  
B.A. in Violin Performance & Political Science from Mary Baldwin College. She then earned an  M.M. in Music Education from Southern Methodist University. While earning her Master's (and for a few years after graduating), she served as the Assistant Registrar of SMU Continuing & Professional Education--an ACEware customer for over 20 years.  In addition to the registrar duties, Lindsey assisted with course programming, instructor recruitment, financial reporting, and was also the first line of support for all things Student Manager and ACEweb--troubleshooting, data cleanup, report customization, creating ACEweb express registration pages, and implementing an alternate interface.  In short, she kept the system running. Lindsey spent almost eight years on the user side of Student Manager and ACEweb. She understands what customers experience on a day-to-day basis. She's been in the Continuing Education trenches. 

Lindsey has a boyfriend, James, who is  the Props Master for SMU's Theatre department. She also has a cat named Lucy

Outside of ACEware, Lindsey is a  freelance violinist. She serves on the Alumnae/i Association Board of Directors for her undergraduate alma mater, Mary Baldwin College, and on the board of Hallie's Heroes, a foundation that raises awareness of rare blood disorders, and encourages others to join the National Bone Marrow Registry.

In her spare time, Lindsey enjoys  reading, home-brewing with James (they're entering a competition this spring!), knitting, and planning her inevitable world domination. She brewed a special beer for her 10-year college reunion in 2014: Work Hard, Play Harder Reunion Ale. It included local hops from Staunton, VA (where the college is located), 20.04 pounds of grain (class of 2004), and it came in right around 10% ABV.  

Contributed by Matthew J. Olson and Lindsey Lieberman

Reporting Totals for Packaged Registrations

In creating transcripts, customers who use the course packaging module were having troubles getting the hours, CEUs, and credits to correctly show. When someone would edit the child registration, they would also have to change the parent course. This would mean things would be double entered.

We try to avoid double entry as much as possible. Unfortunately, we were finding that firing a change to the parent registration when a child registration changed wasn't as clean as we would have liked. Then we thought about the root of the problem: The transcript.

Since a transcript is a report, we decided the best way to help people was with a new function. Enter in TOTPACK in Student Manager version 8.0.034. It requires two parameters: the course number of the package course and the registrant's ID. You may also pass in a third field of what you want totaled in quotes (e.g. "rgceus"). If you don't pass this parameter, it will assume you want the hours. Here are some usage examples:
TOTPACK(cocrse,rgid) returns total hours for all child registrations in the person's course package.
TOTPACK(cocrse,rgid,"rgceus") returns total CEUs for all child registrations in the person's course package.

To increase the usability of this function, I even set it up to take character fields and concatenate them if you so desire. You would do this in the third parameter. An example of that usage is:
TOTPACK (cocrse,rgid,"alltrim(rgtrack)+'|'") returns the tracking code separated  by a parallel pipe (|) for all child registrations in the person's course package.
Notice, that in this case, I was able to put in a separator  in the third parameter so that it isn't all jumbled together.

As always, let your technician know if you need any help putting these on your transcripts.

Contributed by Matthew Olson
Marketing: Exposing Yourself
We all know that marketing is important. Turning potential customers into new customers is an ongoing battle, and you can't ever afford to quit trying. Some of our most successful customers don't market just a single class; they market the program in general. Their goal is to be visible and their attitude is that it's all about educating prospective students. But, frequently, there's little or no budget for flashy marketing pieces. We know you've heard about social media and the effectiveness of your local newspaper. So, here are a few creative, successful ideas that we've gleaned from other customers. Maybe one of these ideas will work for you.

Use your telephone - Do the math: If each member of your staff called two people a week you'd speak one-on-one with hundreds of customers and potential customers. We realize it's tough to get buy-in from staff, and it's worthless unless there's a goal. So, script the beginning and ending of the call. Cull your data for people you haven't heard from in a year and start there.

Say Happy Birthday - Again, look in your data for contacts with birth dates. Send a congratulatory email. Remind people that lifelong learning is not only important; it's a gift they can give themselves.

March! - Enter your department in a parade. Pass out balloons with your logo. Be a part of the community. Attend several community events annually. People will notice.

You're an expert in something - or, at least you know more than the average bear. Get out there and expose yourself!

Contributed by Lauri Thompson
  20th Annual Users' Conference
We've share information about the pre-and-post conference workshops, the many presentations and workshops, and our outstanding featured presenter. You'll appreciate all the quality  educational opportunities during the conference.

In addition to learning opportunities, conferences provide the added benefit of learning from and sharing with others who do what you do! Many opportunities are being planned for you to meet other software users to build your network of professional contacts. Here's a few examples:

Tuesday evening, May 17th: Open House at the ACEware Cabin. Enjoy an evening and a sunset on the tall grass prairie.  Make yourself at home at the ACEware headquarters, where the magic happens! Be sure to plan your travel to arrive in time to participate in this event that begins at 6:30 p.m. (Transportation, food and beverage included in your registration fee.)

Wednesday evening, May 18th: Opening Reception at Tallgrass Tap House . You'll have a relaxing atmosphere to discuss the days' sessions, compare program ideas, and (Transportation, food and beverage included in your registration fee.)
Thursday evening, May 19th: Enjoy Downtown Dine-Arounds with ACEware staff and professional colleagues. (Food and beverage expenses are on your own.)

Register today  to participate in the many learning and networking opportunities you'll have at our 20th Annual Users' Conference. Contact Sharon ( to see what you have in scholarship funds from your paid support agreement! 

Contributed by Sharon Brookshire
Keeping Your Student Manager Directory Clean
A new install of Student Manager contains over 250 files, all of which are part of Student Manager and need to be there. So how can you keep your directory clean?

If you have credit card processing you already have a couple of sub-directories - Extend and Gatecop. Both of these hold files needed for credit card processing. 

You may also have a subdirectory called ACEhold to store files your tech sends to you to be imported into Student Manager along with one named Backup to store your backups (which you move off the server immediately after running, right?).

So this is what you would expect to see when looking at the SM directory:

However, we know that lots of other files get dumped into the SM directory. Backups, Excel spreadsheets, reports outputted as pdfs, images for reports, biographical, and other documents that users need to reference are just some of the files that get put there.

For example, when you decide to output a report as an Excel file or pdf, by default it is going to save it to the SM directory. You can - and should - change this to another location. Since you may want all SM users to be able to access that file you will want to create a subdirectory called Exports or Reports to store them in. 

If you have images you use on reports or attachments to be sent out with registration confirmations those items must be in a directory that SM and all users have access to. 
To keep things clean and organized we recommend creating a subdirectory within the SM directory for these items - for example an Images directory and an Attachments directory.

You may also have documents that you need to reference from within Student Manager.  These might be instructor bio info or additional information on a student.  To ensure that all users can access these items you should put them in a Documents subdirectory.

So with the above items taken into consideration your SM directory would look like this:

Now you eagle eyed readers might notice that there are image files in the main SM directory, but these files are part of the basic program and that is why they are not in a subdirectory.

By storing your files in their own subdirectories you will make it easier to find that particular image or exported report or pdf than if they are scattered throughout the main directory.

In all of the above instances with the exception of Extend and Gatecop  it makes no difference what you name those sub-directories - you just want to name them something that makes sense to you and your users.

Contributed by A.J. Giliberto
2016 Kick-off Meeting
Our annual kick-off meeting was held January 6-7. We celebrated 2015 accomplishments and looked ahead to what we wanted to achieve in 2016.
A great deal of our time was spent discussing what we were hearing from you, our customers. Your wish list items were discussed and, as a result, several new enhancements will be unveiled at our 20th Annual Users' Conference this May. We can hardly wait to share them with you.

From your comments in 2015, we  identified five areas of Student Manager which we would like to expand functionality. Before starting on the project, however, we need more discussion with customer representatives to nail down those development details. Focus groups are being planned for the following areas:
  • Financial Aid
  • Pocket Ledger
  • Inventory
  • Room Use
  • Session Proposals
Let Sharon know if you're interested in participating in a focus group to discuss what you'd like to see in these areas. Drop her a note at

Contributed by Sharon Brookshire
Call for Guest Writers
ACEware customers are doing amazing things in Continuing Education. In 2016 we'd like to designate a portion of our newsletter to sharing customer achievements that would benefit the entire ACEware family. Perhaps you have a new program that was a big hit, or you are using Student Manager/ACEweb in a new way, or you've tried a new marketing avenue. Pat yourself on the back and share what's happening in your units. Please contact Matthew ( if you want to pitch him your article idea. You can be sure we'll be reaching out to you when we hear of things you should be sharing! We hope to hear from you soon.

Contributed by Matthew J. Olson

Here's to your continued success!

Your ACEware team,

- Chuck, Sharon, AJ, Cheryl, Jason, Lauri, Lindsey, Matthew, Mike, and Stein

 Aceware Systems
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