SCRANTON, PA, (June 4, 2016) — Penn Foster, Inc., a leader in career-focused online and blended learning certificate, diploma, and degree programs congratulated Elizabeth Exline, Penn Foster Veterinary Technician graduate from 2015, for receiving the DEAC 2016 Outstanding Graduate of the Year Award. To recognize the achievements of those who study via distance education, the Distance Education Accrediting Commission (DEAC) conducts an Outstanding Graduate program each year. Elizabeth was presented the award during Penn Foster’s 2016 Graduation Commencement ceremony on June 4th.
A native of Burke, Virginia, Elizabeth received her Veterinary Technician Associate Degree from Penn Foster College in April of 2015. She earned her degree while working full-time as a Small-Animal Practice Manager. Choosing distance education was a perfect fit for her busy schedule. To help her decide between several veterinary technician programs, Elizabeth brought brochures to her family veterinarian, who then recommended she enroll with Penn Foster because of its full accreditation through the AVMA.
Inspired by the experiences of her youth, Elizabeth decided to pursue a career in the veterinary field, and initially learned the intricacies of the trade through hands-on training. As a full-time Practice Manager at a small animal practice, Elizabeth was thrilled with the flexibility to further her studies in veterinary technology through distance education. After earning her Associate degree with honors, she is excited for the road ahead within the veterinary field.
The class of 2015 was composed of 140 graduates, a new record for Penn Foster College’s Veterinary Technician program. The program is also anticipating record enrollments with continued growth expected in 2016. This past year the Veterinary Academy team also received the prestigious 2015 AVTE/Merial Award for Excellence in Team Teaching. Penn Foster’s experienced Veterinary faculty includes licensed veterinarians and credentialed veterinary technicians, some of whom are authors of veterinary technology textbooks as well as national leaders in the profession. The Veterinary Technician program incorporates extensive instructional content available to students on a 24 x 7 basis, is optimized for mobile use, and utilizes an award-winning application, the Veterinary Terminology Challenge Games.
Students can choose to attend any of the over 50 webinars hosted on average each month, access over 300 recorded lectures available on-demand, and prepare for the VTNE exam with relevant coursework and study tools and through the required hands-on externship portion of the program. Penn Foster has partnered with Banfield and VCA Animal Hospitals in order to offer students an additional option to apply to for their externships.
"My experience of receiving a Veterinary Technician degree from Penn Foster College changed my life,” said Exline. “It will further my career in ways I can only begin to dream of. I can honestly say this degree is one of the things that I am most proud of in my life.”
Dr. James Hurrell, Director of Penn Foster’s Veterinary Academy, presented Elizabeth with the award. “With this certificate, the DEAC and all of us here at Penn Foster acknowledge and commend Elizabeth’s outstanding academic achievement and the exemplary contributions as a representative of all students who study with accredited distance education institutions,” said Hurrell.
Elizabeth completed her degree program with a 3.86 GPA, and was very active in the Penn Foster Student Community. Since graduating, Elizabeth continues to stay involved with the school as a member of the Veterinary Academy's Advisory Committee, attending student meet-ups and offering continued support to fellow students through focused outreach and Penn Foster's Student Community. Elizabeth also plans to pursue a Bachelor's Degree in veterinary technology, and intends to once again seek out a distance-learning school to continue her education.
“We are fortunate to work alongside distance education institutions like Penn Foster that provide exceptional learning experiences and opportunities for students around the world,” said Leah Matthews, Executive Director, DEAC. “We honor inspirational graduates each year, like Elizabeth, who have demonstrated outstanding academic achievement and contributions to a greater social good and to their chosen professions.” The 2016 Outstanding Graduate Program marks the 33rd consecutive year DEAC has offered this program.
About the DEAC
The Distance Education Accrediting Commission (DEAC) is a private, non-profit organization that operates as a national accreditor of institutions that primarily offer distance education. Founded in 1926, the DEAC holds recognition by the U.S. Department of Education and the Council for Higher Education Accreditation. Accreditation by DEAC covers all distance education activities within an institution and it provides a single source of nationally recognized accreditation from the primary school level through professional doctoral degree-granting institutions.
About Penn Foster
Students, employers and partner organizations rely on Penn Foster to build the skills and knowledge to power the 21st century workforce. For over 125 years, Penn Foster has been dedicated to helping people lead more meaningful and productive lives and to improving social outcomes through education. Penn Foster provides career pathways for opportunity youth and adult learners through diverse and affordable online diploma, certificate and degree programs, offered via its high school, career school and college. With more than 30,000 graduates each year, Penn Foster's online and blended learning programs are delivered in a self-paced, competency-based model wrapped by comprehensive academic, professional and personal support and coaching. For more information, visit http://www.pennfoster.edu.