Penn State Video Learning Network earns national award

September 11, 2012

Many jobs now require a bachelor's degree, but only 27 percent of Pennsylvania residents age 25 and older have a bachelor's degree or higher, according to the Pennsylvania State Data Center. To help more Pennsylvania adults access higher education, Penn State has created a statewide network of 20 video classrooms that offer accelerated education programs. The Penn State Video Learning Network (VLN) is being honored with the 2012 Shirley Davis Award for Excellence in Synchronous Distance Learning by the National University Technology Network (NUTN).

"Our mission is to serve Pennsylvania adult learners that need to earn credentials and degrees at their hometown Penn State campus," said Rosemarie Piccioni, director of the Penn State Video Learning Network. "Every credit has to count, so our courses run for seven-and-a-half weeks, and credits earned often can be used for a certificate and also applied toward a degree program. We also offer general education credit courses to help an adult students begin their journey."

The Davis Award recognizes institutions providing synchronous distance learning of a superior nature. It will be presented Sept. 18 during NUTN's Network 2012 Conference in Kansas City. NUTN is a professional development network for the advancement of teaching and learning in distance education.

Penn State Video Learning Network classrooms are equipped with identical video conferencing systems that enable live delivery of courses from one Penn State campus to up to three other campuses. Courses are held on nights and weekends and also include online components. Current programs include Business Essentials for Professionals and Labor Studies and Employment Relations certificate programs and a pilot RN to B.S. in Nursing degree cohort.

The Penn State VLN is currently available at the following Penn State campuses: Altoona, Berks, Brandywine, DuBois, Erie, Fayette, Great Valley (two VLN classrooms), Greater Allegheny, Hazleton, Harrisburg, Lehigh Valley, Mont Alto, New Kensington, Schuylkill, Shenango, University Park and York, and the Lewistown and Williamsport learning centers.

Penn State Continuing Education offers a venue for adults to return to the classroom on their own terms. Continuing Education is part of Penn State Outreach, which serves more than 5 million people each year, in all 67 Pennsylvania counties, all 50 states and more than 100 countries worldwide.

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Last Updated September 18, 2012