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Volunteer Program Evaluation Series

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VolunteerToday.com ~~ The Electronic Gazette for Volunteerism

with Michael Lee Stills

Learn tips and hints to use a variety of electronic and technical equipment to enhance work with volunteers.

~ May 2003~ Topics

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Dress Up Your Documents With Custom Graphics

Many organizations have logos and other graphics that represent their organization. However, when they create these graphics they often fail to generate a good black and white version for use on letterhead or other documents. Here is a tip you can use to capture and convert graphics for use in your MS Word documents. Just make sure you have copyrights and approval to use the graphic.

Your goal is to end up with a computer file that has been converted into a Word supported file. What most of you do not know is that not all files used by Word have to have the .doc or .txt extension.

Try this:

  • Open Word and then open one of your text document files.
  • Go to File>Save As.
  • Look for the bottom line that says Save as Type.
  • Click on the small arrow next to the window. You should see several different extensions such as .rtf, .mcw, .txt. These are different formats that Word can use and share with other programs. However, when you open a graphics file you will see other extensions such as .bmp (bitmap) and .tif. These will be graphic files that Word can share with other programs.

Putting a captured graphic in your Word Document:

  • Step One - Capture the graphic:
    ~ Use a Scanner
    ~ Capture from the Web by right clicking on the graphic and Save As your file name
    ~ Obtain the computer file of the graphic in a Word supported graphic file
  • Step Two - Convert The graphic Into a Word supported file:
    ~ In whatever program, go to File>Save As and save the file in either a .bmp or .tif format. Experiment with your different software programs to see which files they open and what file type they can Save As.
    ~ Save the file with your file name in one of your commonly used directories
  • Step Three - Open the file in Word:
    ~ From the Word menu, click Insert>Picture>From File
    In the Insert Picture window, find and open your file name. Notice that in the Insert Picture window in the Files of Type line, you can see all the Word supported graphic types.
    ~ Size and Place your graphic

Remember, you can use Step Three to open any existing graphic files supported by Word.

Extra for Experts: Windows usually comes with a program called Paint. Open a graphics file using this program or use it to create your own graphic. Saving as a .bmp file will usually work just fine in Word.

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Printing with Two Different Papers

Most printers today have at least a Main paper tray and a Manual Feed paper tray. The Main tray usually holds your standard plain white bond paper and the Manual Feed is used for letter head, colored paper, or some odd-sized paper. Many word processor programs allow you to chose which tray to print from. Many allow you to specify which tray to print from for the first page and then all subsequent pages there after.

For example, when printing a two-page letter it is generally preferred to print the first page on your letterhead and the second page on a blank page. You can configure the first page to fit your letterhead by adjusting the margins. You can configure the second blank page with different margins.
To do this, go to the File>Page Set Up menu and look for the printer settings that allow you to choose Letter Head or Manual Feed for the first page and Auto configure or Tray 1 (your Main paper tray) for the second page.
Some printers also need to be configured to allow for these settings to work. See your manual or tech guy.
When you choose Print, your first page will draw the letterhead paper from the Manual Feed tray and then print the second page on a blank page from your Main paper tray.

When you are printing large numbers of letters, this process automatically collates the two-page letter for you. You no longer have to run the letters through the copy machine and loose the quality of your letterhead or print the letterhead separately from the second page and manually collate the pages.

Left Squiggly Arrow ImageThis tip will take some time on your part to figure out your particular printer/word processor combination.Right Squiggly Arrow Image
But you do like learning how to use your tools, don't you?

QUICK TIP: Software Information

Have you ever wondered just what is on your computer and how it is configured?
In Windows go to Start>Programs>Accessories>System Tools> System Information.
You will find more information their than you know what to do with. But your tech guy might have a few ideas. ;-)

Editors Note: for Mac users, go to the Apple menu and select Apple System Profiler.

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Do you know of a better way? Or do you have any questions?
Drop me a note at

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