In the News


Webster University Invests $1 Million in IT Infrastructure
St. Louis Business Journal | October 30, 2012 | Full article

Patrick Powers, director of digital marketing and communications, said the school gets about 7.5 percent (or 56,000) of monthly website traffic from mobile devices and that is up 143 percent from the same period last year. “Students’ needs are changing and Webster is changing with them,” Powers said.

Supporting Student Transition Through Social Media
American Journal of Distance Education | June 2012 | Full article

With so many Australians using Facebook, it is unsurprising that universities have invaded this space for teaching, student support more broadly, and for marketing. Even so, social media observer Patrick Powers notes that he is “underwhelmed” by universities’ Facebook pages, which are nothing more than “a quiet nod to the Facebook generation.” Certainly, the activity on most Australian universities’ Facebook sites appears humdrum: orientation, events, and support services.

Professor Sparks Controversy for Klout-Based Grading
U.S. News & World Report | August 29, 2012 | Full article

“If someone were to pull up my Klout score during a job interview, I would like to immediately have a conversation as to about why they think that Klout is important,” [Powers] says.

Social Media: From Tactics to Strategy
Higher Ed Impact | January 2012 | Full article

“Social media is still new enough that users are starved for leadership. If you can provide them with best practices and examples of what effective communications in social media look like, most people are very willing to make improvements. Give them examples of what works, and communicate what you are doing as an institution, why you are doing it, and what benefits your approach can create.”

Plus One More? A look at the newest social network on the block
CASE Currents | January 2012 | Full article

“General social media strategy is about building connections and increasing engagement,” Powers says. “Platforms change, but the strategy doesn’t. Our tactics will change, but our goals remain the same.”

Crosstalk: Changing World of College PR; for Admissions; and More
The Chronicle of Higher Education | Sept. 30, 2011 | Full article

Facebook is making some major changes. The world probably won’t end. But colleges should be prepared to rethink how they approach their Facebook profiles as a result, says Karlyn Morissette at .eduGuru. On Higher Ed Live, Patrick Powers discusses some possibly overlooked Facebook changes that higher-ed marketers ought to pay attention to.

Mobile Game Turns College Tours and Orientations Into Scavenger Hunts
The Chronicle of Higher Education | Sept. 9, 2011 | Full article

“People might think that they’re doing it to play this game, but in reality they’re getting better information, they’re participating in the process,” [Mr. Powers] says.

Making Informed Investments in Social Media
Higher Ed Impact | January-February 2011 | Full article

The most successful colleges and universities have clearly defined their goals, then identified the tools that will be of the most help in meeting those goals … regardless of which social media technologies are “hot.”

Point & Clique: The 2011 RFT St. Louis Web Awards
The Riverfront Times | Jan. 27, 2011 | Full article

The Judges Say: There’s lots of fresh content here; Powers seems to post at least four times each month. And it’s great to see him relate social media to an actual topic (higher education) — not just social media for its own sake — and promote organizations and professionals other than himself. This site feels like a St. Louis-based Mashable.

Campus Overload Live with Jenna Johnson: College social media
The Washington Post | Jan. 20, 2011 | Full article

Patrick Powers: In the end, the best way to recruit a student remains building a personal connection. Facebook, Twitter, text messaging, these are all tools colleges and universities can use to make that connection stronger. If a student prefers to use Facebook as his/her main means of communication, colleges and universities need to be able to accept that fact and meet them where they are.

Will Your College Be Covered in Virtual Graffiti?
The Chronicle of Higher Education | March 14, 2010 | Full article

And at Webster University, Patrick J. Powers spent a couple of days plotting his suburban St. Louis campus on Foursquare and Gowalla, to ensure that sites were named correctly on those platforms. “It’s a lot easier to get ahead of the curve and to guide people into some of these technologies, as opposed to after the fact going back and trying to correct” their behavior, says the interactive-media manager.

Taste of St. Louis first major event to use Square
St. Louis Post-Dispatch | Sept. 29, 2011

“It comes down to convenience and security,” said Patrick Powers, interactive media manager at Webster University. “If this device can offer both, it will be a success.”

Spreading the News
University Business | September 2009 | Full article

In June, on President Beth Stroble’s first day in that role, 47 tweets marked with the “#websterpress” hashtag made it easier for users to find them through searches. A St. Louis Post-Dispatch reporter covering the event highlighted the live tweeting in the article. Webster staff tweeted about the piece, and Interactive Media Manager Patrick Powers estimates the link has reached about 15,000 people.

College grads get their day in the sun, outdoor ceremonies cap off season of storms and flu scares
St. Louis Post-Dispatch | May 17, 2009

Patrick Powers began tweeting at 5:48 a.m. on the day of Webster University ‘s graduation at the Muny last weekend. In the course of four hours, the school’s interactive media manager posted about 55 pictures and 75 short messages to the university ‘s account on the social networking site Twitter.

He mentioned, for example, that 1,100 graduating students were in attendance and had numerous pictures of the bagpipers who performed at the beginning and end.

A Webster alumnus from Louisville was following his tweets and responded – as did graduates from Webster ‘s London campus who sent pictures of their ceremony going on that day.

Webster University president flashes energy and Twitter updates, on first day
St. Louis Post-Dispatch | July 5, 2009

“Sweet breakfast spread awaits the presidential meet and greet for Dr. Stroble’s first day.”

That tweet, sent at 8:15 a.m. Wednesday, was the first of 45 posted on Twitter from the iPhone glued to the fingers of Patrick Powers , the “interactive media manager” for Webster University .

It was accompanied by a picture of a colorful array of fruit and neatly arranged plates of muffins, danishes and bagels.

The next tweet, sent 15 minutes later, noted that Elizabeth Stroble, the new Webster president and the woman of honor, had entered the University Center lounge.