Over 6 million alerts delivered in the first week of February alone.
As the northeast part of the country endured back-to-back blizzards, schools across the region relied on e2Campus to send critical messages to students, staff and parents. During the first week of February alone, over 5 million text messages were successfully delivered and another million in voice calls and emails were sent. Countless more messages were viewed via web page posts, desktop alerts, social media, and other endpoints.
New user sign-ups also increased as students were signing up for alerts at the rate of one every other second. As the nation’s most reliable emergency notification network, e2Campus was able to support the sudden demand for weather-related emergency alerts.
Annemarie Mountz, Assistant Director of Public Information at Penn State, said the University had roughly 65,000 subscribers to their PSUTXT messages on e2Campus. By Wednesday morning, nearly 6,000 additional people had signed up for the service. She said Penn State made good use of the system during these storms.
“We have 24 separate campuses across Pennsylvania and many of them lie in areas that were hit with heavy snow and blizzard conditions,” she explained. “They each used e2Campus multiple times to send an alert to their respective campus communities to tell them that classes were delayed or cancelled.
“Besides the text messaging, phone and email alerts, we also tied e2Campus to Twitter and our Facebook Page.
Interestingly, people were commenting on the Facebook post from e2Campus, which provided us feedback in a new dimension.
“Penn State often doesn’t simply cancel classes, but may have special instructions for essential and non-essential employees. A lot of the radio stations and TV stations have hotlines for snow closings that are automated and you don’t have the ability for special instructions. e2Campus allows us to say exactly what the situation is. It’s very easy to use and we’re very glad to have it.”
Robert Rowan is the Emergency Management Director for the University of Maryland, Baltimore. Mr. Rowan said, “There have been four separate times we have closed campus in the last two weeks because of snow. We’re very pleased to have e2Campus as a means of getting the word out quickly and accurately.
“In past events, we found a high degree of unreliability with some of the TV stations. Sometimes they get the message. Sometimes they do not. And occasionally, the messages get distorted a little bit.
“Then we added e2Campus and have had very good response with it. Our entire campus population of more than 10,000 people get the alerts in a matter of a few minutes. It broadcasts our message directly to their cell phones, home phones, and email accounts. We have been very pleased with e2Campus.”