WORCESTER, Mass. -Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) has received the November 2006 Four Star Tour Award from CampusTours, a leader in college virtual tours and multimedia, for its student-focused admissions virtual tour.
WPI has developed a virtual tour that gives prospective students a glimpse of life on campus through the eyes of five current students. The virtual tour touches on key elements of the unique WPI academic experience, which prepares students to solve complex problems and make a difference to society. The tour also offers a sense of student life, including on- and off-campus activities. The main tour is supplemented by four video profiles of students featured in the tour. The videos provide a more in-depth view of campus life and enable the students to explain their ambitions and their reasons for choosing WPI. WPI hired the Waltham, Mass.-based marketing and communications agency FORGE Worldwide to produce the tour.
"While nothing can replace a personal visit to campus, WPI’s virtual tour provides prospective students with a thorough introduction to the university," said Edward J. Connor, WPI’s director of admissions. "The tour demonstrates WPI’s active and collaborative project-based curriculum, our faculty, our beautiful 80-acre campus, and life on campus " from music, to theater, to sports, and more."
According to the CampusTours Web site, the awards committee enjoyed WPI’s student-focused approach. "Placing the testimonials of current students front and center helps make the case for a diverse and energetic campus atmosphere, and provides a window into the programs and extracurricular pursuits offered by the university," the site notes. "The committee’s student reviewers felt they had a better understanding of the WPI experience after watching the videos, and several mentioned they identified with some of the students in the videos."
"Nearly every college offers a virtual tour today - it’s a fairly standard Web site feature, " said Tara Myers, WPI’s marketing director. "We broke with the traditional virtual tour because we knew that students wanted more than just look at the buildings on campus. They wanted to know what the students were like, whether they would fit in, and what it was like to go to school here. Our new tour shows off our beautiful campus, but also focuses on the people, because, ultimately, that’s what makes a university an enjoyable place to study and live."
WPI offers low- and high-bandwith versions of the tour at www.admissions.wpi.edu.