Virginia Tech reached an agreement with National Notification Network (3n; parent company of Tulsa-based Superior Notification Systems) that will significantly expand the university’s ability to send critical news and information to the university community during campus emergencies.
The new emergency notification system, along with existing communications vehicles long used by the university, will form the basis of VT Alerts, a fully integrated and coordinated emergency communications program maintained by Virginia Tech’s Office of University Relations.
The expanded VT Alerts system debuted July 2. Students, faculty and staff were able to sign up for several new 3n-enabled emergency notification options beginning that day. The expanded VT Alerts system will be fully operational by Aug. 20, the first day of fall classes.
3n’s technology will enable the university to send messages to students, faculty and staff using methods and media not maintained by the university, such as text messages to personal cell phones, instant messages via systems maintained by America Online, Yahoo and MSN, phone calls and e-mails to numbers and mailboxes that reside outside the university’s network.
In addition, the system will allow subscribers to list contacts for parents, spouses or other individuals among their contact preferences.
Currently the university has several communications tools to reach students, faculty and staff including the heavily used university homepage, the Virginia Tech News website, broadcast e-mail alerts, broadcast voice-mail messages, a recorded emergency hotline, the university switchboard and a coordinated use of public media outlets.
“We began the process of adding to and enhancing our already robust emergency notification system last fall, and we were in the final stages of selecting a vendor when the tragic events of April 16 occurred,” says Larry Hincker, associate vice president for university relations. “The 3n InstaCom Campus Alert system is a sophisticated tool that is easy to use. I believe it can only further benefit our students, faculty and staff.”
“At any level of the educational hierarchy, safety is the top priority. 3n is proud to partner with Virginia Tech to ensure the well-being of the university’s students, faculty and staff by providing a modernized mass notification approach,” says Cinta Putra, CEO and co-founder of 3n. “We are looking forward to a successful and growing relationship with Virginia Tech in which we will provide the university with the essential communication tools to handle any crisis situation that may arise in the future.”
3n is the leading global provider of mass notification solutions to Global 2000 corporations, government agencies, healthcare systems and educational institutions in more than 230 countries worldwide. For more information about 3n, visit www.3nonline.com or call 888-366-4911.