October 10, 2012 - Penn Foster, Inc., a global leader in online education, offering programs in high school, career school and college, today announced that after an extensive review it has selected the Vsnap video messaging platform to help faculty and staff better engage and support Penn Foster’s more than 150,000 students. With Vsnap, Penn Foster employees can easily record short video messages for students, as a more personal alternative to email or other text communication. This is part of Penn Foster’s commitment to creating more personal connections within its community as a path to increasing students’ success.
In addition to offering apps that make it easy to record and send short video messages, or “vsnaps,” from Apple and Android smartphones and tablets, Vsnap also hosts the videos and provides a simple system for measuring their effectiveness. Each vsnap is 60 seconds or less, and can be shared to a recipient’s Twitter handle, LinkedIn account, or email address.
By using Vsnap, Penn Foster has the ability to send and store an unlimited number of video messages, and access rich measurement tools to guide the school’s usage. In addition, students will be able to send vsnaps to one another and to faculty, further deepening the cohesion of the Penn Foster community. Close to 90 percent of all college students have a smartphone, and according to eMarketer are seen as a necessity by undergraduates. With the rise of social networks, consumers have become more comfortable with communicating via video, and with Vsnap, students can more easily connect with faculty and school administrators.
“We have been testing the Vsnap software with strong results both internally and in academic learning situations,” said Joe Gagnon, president of Penn Foster. “The tool aligns perfectly with our commitment to making sure that students feel supported as they use education to advance their goals. This enterprise agreement will give us access to richer analytics, as well as the opportunity to customize the branding on the video messages.”
"At Vsnap, we admire Penn Foster's deep commitment to making their students feel special,” said Dave McLaughlin, co-founder and CEO of Vsnap. “We are very pleased to be helping their team create that personal and emotional connection as a way to better serve their students and to drive the growth of the company. It’s exciting for us because we share the values of the Penn Foster team, and because their student population of more than 150,000 gives our young company an amazing opportunity to have enormous impact.”
“With Vsnap we are adding a layer of collaboration and a personal touch on top of our classes, making it easier for our student body to embrace learning and succeed,” continued Gagnon. “That’s our mission, and it’s our growth strategy. The more successful students are, the more successful we are as a company.”
The benefits to online learning are known – from scalability, flexibility, and affordability to greater student achievement. However, with an affordable model like Penn Foster, it is also proving to be a viable, low-cost strategy that could substantially help overcome the huge, recession-driven deficits in education budgets across the country.
About Penn Foster
Penn Foster is a global leader in online education, providing high school diplomas, career-focused degree and vocational programs in the fields of allied health, business, technology, education, and select trades. Penn Foster has a rich history in distance learning, tracing back to their roots as the International Correspondence School in 1890. The institution today, comprised of Penn Foster High School, the largest high school in the United States; Penn Foster College and Penn Foster Career School, graduates 25,000 annually, and has always been dedicated to educating and training America's working population.
Vsnap is a tool that businesses use to make their customers feel valued. It’s a simple system that makes it easy to record, share and measure short video messages, not more than 60 seconds, as a more personal alternative to email or other text communications. The benefit is that recipients take action about 40% more than email recipients, and that they tend to be more evangelical on online social networks. Vsnap is a free product with premium features for businesses becoming publicly available in the coming months. Vsnap is privately held. The company is headquartered in Boston, MA, and recently closed a $750,000 investment round.