College Tour Season Goes Virtual With Unibuddy, Peer-To-Peer Platform

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Global startup partnering with more than 80 U.S. colleges to help reach prospective students

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"I created this tool to help students connect directly with each other to talk about what it’s really like to attend a particular institution,” said Unibuddy CEO Diego Fanara. "It’s critical now more than ever to partner with these institutions to better reach and serve prospective students."

With National College Decision Day set for May 1, peer to peer online platform Unibuddy is partnering with more than 80 U.S. colleges and universities in 23 states spanning the nation as a crucial tool for students isolated at home and institutions scrambling to host college tours remotely.

As spring college admissions season goes entirely virtual this year because of closures from the COVID-19 global pandemic, Unibuddy is working with admissions offices at nationally ranked public and private institutions, as well as regional universities and community colleges. Unibuddy’s platform gives universities a chance to host virtual events and group chats with prospective students. Platform features include student-to-student chats, student-to-staff chats, live online events, and other virtual ways to help high school students better understand everything from academics to nightlife to athletics - all without having to step foot on campus.

“When I was younger, it wasn’t practical to visit most colleges. I know what it’s like for today’s students; a huge decision to be made with only websites and brochures. I created this tool to help students connect directly with each other to talk about what it’s really like to attend a particular institution,” said Unibuddy CEO Diego Fanara. “It’s critical now more than ever to partner with these institutions to better reach and serve prospective students - in a world of social isolation and quarantines.”

Unibuddy launched in 2017 and now works with more than 250 higher education institutions in 28 countries. More than 150,000 students have sent over two million messages through the online platform. Unibuddy works with over half the UK’s universities and partners with the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service. Unibuddy has the largest number of commercial relationships with university clients worldwide.

It’s a common practice for colleges to ask enrolled students to serve as campus ambassadors to prospective students, but Unibuddy allows students to connect much earlier in the decision-making process to ask questions about classes, majors and campus life. Unibuddy stands out from other college platforms because it allows prospective students to make meaningful connections with university students even before applying to an institution - where other platforms will only unlock content and peer-to-peer connections after a student has been accepted to a university.

At St John's University, 28% of Unibuddy users committed to attending the university after speaking directly with students enrolled at the university, compared to the 16% institutional average for prospective students.

“As we approached the accepted students phase, there were a lot of questions about majors. At 17-years-old, students don’t always know what they want to do. They have questions like: what can I expect? What kind of internships are offered? What are the professors like? How big are the classes?” said Corinne Gentile, director of Director of Enrollment Management Events at St. John’s. “Any time a prospective student has an interaction with an ambassador, they are more likely to come here. That student -to-student connection always has that effect.”

About Unibuddy
Unibuddy is an online platform connecting university applicants to existing students. Working with over 250 higher education institutions in 28 countries worldwide, Unibuddy has helped more than 150,000 students from across the world make better decisions about their higher education journey based on human experience and connectivity, rather than only prospectuses and websites. Unibuddy is a high-growth startup, founded by Swiss-born Diego Fanara in 2017. It has raised $7 million since inception with investment from Fred Destin of Stride VC, Bart Swanson (seed investor and board member of Zoom), Daniel Borel (co-founder and chairman of Logitech) and Shakil Khan (early investor in Spotify). For more information, please visit: https://www.unibuddy.com/northamerica/

US Media Contact:
Alyssa Miller
alyssa@ammediaworks.com
973-615-1292

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