Concordia University, Nebraska, Makes Move from “Clunky” System to Via
Via Helps One-Person Office “Keep Plates Spinning in a Functional Way”
Julie Johnston Hermann, director of global opportunities at Concordia University, Nebraska, had been contemplating changing software providers for some time when she learned about Via.
“Our other system was pretty clunky,” Julie says. “When I saw Via, it seemed like it was much more user friendly.”
Julie scheduled a demo and liked what she saw in terms of Via’s capabilities. She was also attracted to Via’s price tag. Cost had been a big driver for Concordia to look for another software provider, she says.
“We really weren’t getting what we needed for the amount of money that we were paying,” she says.
Julie was also frustrated that Concordia had to pay full tilt for their software—even when they weren’t sending any travelers abroad during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic. In fact, she says, their software provider went radio silent for two years.
“They had no communication with us during that time other than notices for our annual bills,” Julie says.
After conferring with her colleagues in the International Education community, including at other Concordia universities, the Global Opportunities Center switched to Via in August 2022.
Concordia Makes Easy Transition to Via
Even though she describes herself as “a very non-tech person,” Julie says she found Via easy to use.
“When I was using the other system, I’d have to go back and look at the instructions to figure out what I had to do. Via is very intuitive. It makes sense,” Julie says.
Creating and adding forms with Via was easy—and got even easier when Via rolled out its new forms system.
“With the other system, I was always afraid that I would break something or lose what I was working on and not be able to go back in. Via is very forgiving. I’m not afraid.”
As a one-person office, Via has made Julie’s day-to-day work life much less stressful. She’s even finding Via “fun”.
“It’s really fast and easy to put in a trip,” she says. “It looks nice and it’s very functional—on both sides. I really love the fact that students can go into Via and create their profile and then get matched with provider programs and our in-house programs, all in the same area. To me, that is just so fun. Via generates this list and makes it easy for them. In the past, students would get a little bit overwhelmed if they didn’t know where they wanted to study abroad. I love students being able to see the possibilities.”
Via’s Support Team “Helpful, Friendly and Quick”
When it comes to the support she’s receiving from Via, Julie couldn’t be happier. Even Via’s chatbot is helpful—and fun. Before Via, Julie says she never knew who she was talking to or if she would even get to talk with someone.
“Via support team never makes me feel like, ‘Oh, you don’t know that?’ I’ve never had that experience. They’ve always been very helpful and very friendly and very quick.”
When IE colleagues ask her if they should switch to Via, Julie encourages them to do so—particularly if they are also a one-person office.
“Via is such a timesaver and makes it much more manageable to keep those plates spinning in a very functional way,” she says. “It wasn’t a hard transition and Via’s worked really great for us.”
Like Julie Johnston Hermann at Concordia University, Nebraska, Via believes global experiences will change our world. That’s why we created traveler relationship management and travel risk management software, which helps universities and study abroad program providers to empower global experiences. If you want a true education abroad partner, turn to Via.