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with Michael Lee Stills

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

~ November 2004 ~ Topics

Hyperlinks: Not Just for Websites Anymore!

You all know hyperlinks by now I am sure. Go online, click on a link and be taken to a new source of information. Hyper-linking is what has kept many of us away from our work by surfing too long on the web. But did you know you could create hyper links in Microsoft (MS) Word documents?

Perhaps you have a lengthy document with lots of references to other locations with in the document. With documents being read online these days, why not hyperlink your information?

Try this:
    • Open one of your long documents, say you volunteer orientation manual. Choose a section, let's say the Time Sheet you have in the Appendix. Highlight something in that document, perhaps "TIME SHEET" then choose: Insert>Bookmark. In the field labeled bookmark, give the highlighted section a name. Say, "Timesheet" (note that the bookmark name must not have any spaces between words). Then click on Add.

    • Next, go to the section in your Orientation Manual that refers to the Time Sheet. Highlight a section, again say, "Time Sheet" and click on Insert>Hyperlink. Choose: Place in This Document as seen on the left side of the window. Find Bookmarks in the window and click on 'Timesheet" and click on OK. Bingo, away you go.

    • Test it out by clicking on the hyperlink "Time Sheet" and watch as it takes you to the Appendix and your Time Sheet. Notice that in the upper left of the Menu bars, there are Forward and Back arrows. Click on the back arrow and you return to the main part of the Manual that you just left.

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Age Calculator

Here is a great tool for those of you who need to calculate ages. I found several versions on the web, use search words like "Age Calculator." I created my own interface in Excel.

1. Go to Excel and in Column A add these:
    • A1 – Your Birth Date. Use this format: MM/DD/YYYY
    • A2 – Leave Blank we will enter a formula here.
    • A3 – TODAY (this is the actual word "TODAY")

2. In Column B add these:

    • B1 – the word "Birth Date"
    • B2 – the word "Age"
    • B3 – Leave blank for a formula

3. Next Highlight the six cells A1:B3 and adjust the text, font, font size, shading, as you desire. If you get something like ##### that means you need to widen the cell to show the results.

Ok, now for the formulas.

4. In cell B3 enter this formula:

    • =TODAY()

This will always auto enter today's date if your computer is correct. This will be used in the next formula to calculate how old someone is based on todays date.

5. In cell A2, enter this formula:


Wow, this is some formula! Be sure it is accurate. Try copying and pasting from this site. Make sure there are no spaces between words and formulas. This is actually one really long line forced into several because we cannot display it as one long formula. You may have to copy and paste several pieces of it to get it into Excel - so be sure that it is in proper order.

You should end up with something like this:

  A B
1 7/9/1990 Birth Date
2 14 Age
3 Today 10/28/2004

Now if you enter someone's birth date in cell A1 (upper left corner), you will get their age in cell A2 (where you entered that really long formula).


Plan an EDU-VACATION - April 26-29, 2005

Training for managers of volunteers, leading to a certificate, is being held April 26-29, 2005. Sponsored by Washington State University, the Volunteer Management Certificate Program will be held in Port Hadlock, Washington, in the shadow of the Olympic Mountains. Topics include:

Recruitment Evaluation
Training Management and Supervision
Recognition Risk Management
Diversifying the Volunteer Pool The Internet as the Manager's Next Best Friend

Interactive Case Models based on student process is the focus of Learning Activities.
For more information, visit the website at: http://www.emmps.wsu.edu/volunteer.

Do you know of a better way? Or do you have any questions?
Drop me a note at Michael@MichaelStills.com.

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