Via Brings Hamilton’s Global Learning Office Together 

Madeleine LaCotera, Associate Director at Hamilton College.

Madeleine LaCotera has held a variety of positions in the Office of Global Learning at Hamilton College in Clinton, NY. She started in 2010 as the study abroad administrator for the college’s India program and was named associate director in July 2022.

It was during her previous tenure as assistant director that Madeleine began looking for alternatives to the “homegrown” system she was using—and a conference registration platform that others in her office were using. During a site visit to Budapest in 2018, a colleague suggested Via.

“She said, ’Take a look at Via. They have something good,’” Madeleine recalls. “I did and I was impressed. Via was very simple, very user friendly, very intuitive.” 

Via Brings Global Learning Office Together 

Transitioning to Via happened “in a matter of days,” Madeleine recalls. 

“Even after the first training we were able to get some things started and transition our operations, especially our program applications. We were able to get that launched right away. Since then, of course, we’ve improved and made things easier for ourselves and our students.”

Hamilton students on an excursion to island of Sandhamn as part of the on the Swedish Program.

Via, she adds, “really put us all together in a room, literally and figuratively, so that we can be on the same page. It’s made a lot of things more streamlined and automated so we don’t have to bother each other with a lot of minutiae. We can actually spend more time together discussing larger, more strategic topics.”

Via’s “Very Responsive” 

Since signing on in 2018, Madeleine has seen Via incorporate features and functionality that Hamilton suggested early on would be helpful.

“Via is very responsive to user feedback,” Madeleine says. “Via is curious about our experience, about our needs, and works to serve those needs. Even if there isn’t a solution right away, there’s a response and a curiosity to understand where we’re coming from, how we use the software. Via’s customer service has been incredible.”

Located in Clinton, New York, Hamilton has 2,000 students, 34% of which are students of color and international citizens.

“Study abroad has always been a very important part of the four-year experience at Hamilton,” Madeleine says. “We don’t have a hard time enticing or convincing students to study abroad. Many of them plan for it from the very beginning.”

In France touring the U.S. Embassy in Paris with Class of 2003 Hamilton alum!

Some students, she admits, are in resistance to interacting with yet another software system on campus, preferring to email or stop by the Global Learning office instead. But the office insists that students set up their profiles in Via before they can meet with staff. Via’s single sign-on makes that easy, Madeleine says. 

“We definitely see ourselves as partners with the students,” she says. “We really want to be part of their planning, their research, their exploration. We want students to understand that, while study abroad can be a wonderful, self-growth opportunity to explore the world, it can enhance and complement what they’re doing academically at Hamilton and help them with future plans and career goals. 

“It’s a bit of a shift for students, but once they’re in our office, they hear it a lot,” she says with a laugh. “There’s more to study abroad than just the travel aspect.”

Let’s Connect

Like Madeleine LaCotera at Hamilton College, 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.


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