Pennsylvania State University

Income to participating Penn State departments and programs rose by $2 million.
6X Programs

41 programs in 2006 to 260 programs in 2013

4X Registrants

6,013 registrants in 2006 to 24,645 registrants in 2013

10X Revenue

Income to participating Penn State departments & programs rose by $2 million

Coordinating the wide range of events that take place across Penn State’s colleges and campuses is no easy feat, and much of the work falls to the Office of Conferences and Short Courses (OCSC). But as the new millennium brought new events and an increased demand for online programs, the OCSC realized that its old system of event and conference planning had become unsustainable.


Stalled Growth

Growth was being hindered by an enrollment process that was both laborious and time-consuming, relying on multiple databases, manual-registration processes, and direct mailings. Outreach programs also lacked a standardized fee structure, consistent branding, and a defined set of services to be used in promoting programs and attracting consumers.

It was time for a drastic change – and the OCSC turned to Cvent for the solution.


Streamlined Success

Thanks to its partnership with Cvent, the OCSC experienced astounding year-on-year growth in terms of number of registrants for events, total income, and income paid to internal clients (other Penn State departments and programs).

Today, Cvent supports more than 100,000 registrations per year for events and programs offered across the university. What was once a labor-intensive, manual process has been transformed into a streamlined system that empowered staff, expanded the number of programs by a factor of six, and increased income tenfold.


Doing More with Less

Streamlining their enrollment process also meant evolving from manual to digital, using a hybrid strategy that combined an electronic marketing campaign with targeted mailings driving to online or phone. Suddenly, with the ability to do more with less their events program benefited from:

  • Reduced Costs
  • Broader Reach
  • More Informed Program Strategy
  • Increased Engagement and Registration


A Win for All Concerned

Today, the OCSC provides four levels of event-planning services and fees. And it continues to grow, with an average of two to three new program requests per week.



With the increase in revenue, registrants, and participants, even more people will benefit from Penn State’s conference, events, and non-credit programs, not only helping the university more effectively fulfill its land-grant mission, but also expanding educational opportunities to more Pennsylvania citizens – a win for all concerned.


To find out more about how Cvent can increase efficiency and engagement at your institution, please contact us here.     

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