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Penn College Establishes ‘Facebook’ Presence

Pennsylvania College of Technology recently launched its first official social-networking presence online.

The Pennsylvania College of Technology page on Facebook, first announced by college President Davie Jane Gilmour in a campuswide meeting in January, allows prospective students to interact with the college in a familiar setting.

“Visitors will find Penn College Web resources, videos, PCToday (the college’s news and information Web site) articles, upcoming events, and more on the page including “˜The Wall,’ where they can post comments and questions,” Gilmour said.

The page on Facebook was commissioned by President’s Council, which appointed a task force to extend the college’s Web presence into the realm of social networking an interactive medium that complements and supplements more traditional modes of communication such as print, television, radio, newspapers, e-mail and text-messaging.

The group’s research indicated that social-networking sites are a viable means of reaching current and future students, and a presence in that technological arena is critical to an institution’s credibility with its audience, much like the cultural change that pushed the creation of Web sites a decade ago.

“With more than 140 million active users worldwide, including thousands of our current students and many employees “¦ the Facebook social-networking site provides us with another Web-based communications channel that supplements our www (Internet) and myPCT (intranet) Web sites and enhances our options to inform and interact with prospective and current students,” said Jim Cunningham, vice president for information technology.

The task force identified Facebook as the site of choice for the college’s demographic: 18- to 25-year-old prospective and current students. Nearly 8,000 Facebook members are registered using e-mail addresses within the “pct.edu” domain, and a significant number of members have identified Penn College as their alma mater, which further expands the potential reach of departments such as Alumni Relations and Institutional Advancement.

Currently, the college has 687 Facebook “fans,” of which 50 percent are age 18-24, and 23 percent are age 25-34.

The college also has launched a Student Activities page on Facebook with 110 fans thus far to promote its events and activities to current students.

Gilmour urged the college community to watch for more pages on Facebook and for the college to extend its presence to other social-networking sites.

For more information about Penn College, visit online, e-mail or call toll-free (800) 367-9222.