Who We Are


We empower learners to achieve their goals in the classroom and beyond. Our purpose is to provide an accessible, quality Penn State education online to address the needs of learners pursuing their educational goals across Pennsylvania, throughout the nation, and around the world.

Penn State World Campus’ mission is to engage learners across the Commonwealth, the nation, and the world with access to affordable, high-quality educational programs that leverage the talent, knowledge, diversity, and creativity of our faculty, our staff, and our students in order to provide robust learning experiences at a distance. We create educational opportunities that stand apart in the breadth of our program options, in our commitment to academic ownership and research excellence, in the availability of engagement opportunities, and in the support of our learners. We support the success of all Penn State students by helping create pathways for them to begin their educational journeys or to continue their learning and complete their degrees.  


Our strategic plan addresses what we do, how we do it, and the impact of our efforts. Those efforts are driven by five goals that focus on addressing the student lifecycle, our operational effectiveness, and our ability to advance inclusion, equity, and diversity. Each goal has a roadmap with action items, milestones, key performance indicators, and measurable outcomes. 

Program Optimization

Increase application admits by 7% through the collaborative optimization of our program portfolio to best meet learner aspirations, satisfy market demands, and leverage academic strengths by 2025.

Objectives include:

  • Increase enrollments in identified programs with high growth opportunities
  • Increase applications in highest market demand and institutional focus areas
  • Increase rate of prospects who submit an application
  • Align program curriculum and design with learner aspirations, market opportunities, and academic strengths
  • Make student- and University-minded decisions to maximize collaboration and program resource investments across the entire World Campus portfolio
  • Enable insights-driven decision-making at scale 


Increase the overall conversion rate from prospect to enrolled student for undergraduate and graduate populations by 2% by 2025 to help more students achieve their educational goals.

Objectives include:

  • Increase the number of submitted applications
  • Increase the rate of conversion for submitted-to-complete applications
  • Optimize the pathway to enrollment during the admit-to-enroll portion of the funnel
  • Make the enrollment process (from prospect to enrollment) enjoyable, engaging, and seamless
  • Reduce the cost to degree for our learners
  • Improve the UG transfer credit experience for students


Increase graduate graduation rate by 5% and undergraduate graduation rate by 10% by 2025/2026.

Objectives include:

  • Increase the percentage of successful course completions in high failure–rate courses
  • Increase the number of students who graduate after having stopped out close to graduation while in good academic standing
  • Increase the percentage of students who are in good academic standing who are retained after the first year
  • Develop new course and program models to design for quality and success
  • Increase personalized success pathways that tie to students’ personal and career goals
  • Reduce financial barriers to degree completion 

Organization Optimization

Use our resources of time, expertise, and finances at the highest level of effectiveness in order to decrease or redeploy effort or expense equal to or greater than $10 million by 2025 in order to sustainably support our vision of student success, including investing at least 50% of those savings directly into student access, affordability, and success initiatives.

Objectives include:

  • Improve — including automating where appropriate — business processes in order to increase available capacity
  • Improve data infrastructure and utilization of data in organizational work
  • Reduce duplication of systems and processes across the organization
  • Align staff skills, experience, level, and work with the highest value–add activities in alignment with the needs and strategy of the organization
  • Increase consistency and collaboration across World Campus units
  • Optimize how we work, where we work, and the tools we use to work in order to improve the staff user experience

Foundational Focus

Advance inclusion, equity, and diversity in our workplaces, and with the audiences whom we support, through fostering belonging, open discourse, mutual respect, genuine care, equal opportunity, and different perspectives.

Objectives include:

  • Be strong in understanding, bold in communicating, and committed to supporting what we expect in our workplace culture
  • Ensure the design and delivery of our programs and services advance inclusion, equity, and diversity in order to address inequities, disparities, and inequalities in society