| By Nicole Albrecht |
Hi everyone! My name is Nicole Albrecht and I am Gale’s new GVRL Specialist. I am sure you are asking yourself, “What exactly is a GVRL Specialist?” Well, before I explain my role, what I have created recently, and how I plan to help in the future, let me tell you about myself.
I was born and raised in the lovely state of Michigan and currently live in the Metro Detroit area. I always knew I was going to be a teacher, so after high school I attended Western Michigan University. (Go Broncos!) My love for reading and learning about the past lead me to choose Western’s Education program in Secondary Education with a major in English and History. After graduation I decided to take a leap of faith and go out of state to teach. I taught World History in beautiful, but very rural North Carolina for two years before moving back home to Michigan. Teaching jobs were hard to find when I came home, so I took a position at a charter high school in inner city Detroit. It was in this urban environment that I thrived and settled in to teach for the next four years. As you can imagine, teaching in the inner city wasn’t easy or pretty at times, but something about the kids and their challenges made me a better teacher. During my time in Detroit, I also graduated with my Master’s degree in Curriculum and Instruction with a focus in Adolescent Literacy. At the end of my 6th year of teaching, I felt it was time to search new horizons and I came upon an opportunity to teach at the college level for a technical institution. It was an amazing chance to teach high school students who were dual enrolled for their diploma and an associate’s degree. I taught there for two years before finding this wonderful opportunity, here at Gale, to step out of the classroom and utilize my skills in a different manner.
My job title at Gale is GVRL Specialist, but I find that I wear many hats, which doesn’t matter because I look good in hats! My main role is to assist the K12 sales teams and their customers by creating customized collections to fit their needs. Basically, what this means is that if a customer needs a specific collection of eBooks created, I carefully study their curriculum and state standards to pull together a list of titles that perfectly match what they want. On the side, I also watch national holidays that fall in the school calendar and create collections that are related to those, as well as collections that match what might be going on in the world outside of a school. My role is not to just create customized collections; I also help the sales reps with upselling opportunities, relationship expansion ideas, and other special projects that they may need. Besides working with the sales teams, I also collaborate with marketing, publishing relations, product management and digital services in various on-going projects that ensure the success of the K12 team, GVRL and Gale.
When I was hired in late 2016, with a deadline to be “released into the wild” for the K12 team in early spring, I was given time to learn about my role and exploring the world that is GVRL. I eat, sleep, and GVRL every day. I have actually had dreams where GVRL, my collections, or certain tasks were involved! The time that I have spent inside GVRL has helped me to develop and perfect the skills needed to efficiently navigate the database, so I can assist the reps successfully. Also, during this time, I have been assisting inside sales reps with small customer requests, helping sales management with larger more complicated projects such as core lists for schools or districts, and creating customized collections in my personal library for sales reps to preview and utilize. My collaborations with marketing have led to the creation of some amazing tools that sales reps can use with customers which include collection and publisher spotlight flyers as well as insider tips or what I like to call “teacher-nuggets,” for each collection. These insider tips are my own reflections, personal picks, or ways that teachers can use whole lists and even a single title within a collection.
Now that you’ve had the opportunity to learn about me and my role as a GVRL specialist, I invite you to stay tuned for my next blogs as I dive into upcoming collections, digital features, and marketing materials!