Close It Summit

Penn Foster Joins 800+ Employers, Educators and Workforce Leaders at Close It Summit

October 04, 2016

CEO Frank Britt’s Panel Session Will Showcase Pioneering Employer-Provider Blended Learning Model with Banfield Pet Hospital, Largest Retail Animal Hospital Chain in U.S.

DALLAS, TX, (October 4, 2016) — Penn Foster Inc., a for-purpose organization providing skills development training, credentials and employment matching for today's frontline workforce, is participating at the Close It 2016 Summit, joining 800+ employers, educators and workforce leaders gathered now in Dallas to address education, training and hiring via a new lens: competencies and skills.

Penn Foster’s commitment to addressing the skills gap is being demonstrated today at the annual summit — CEO Frank Britt is showcasing his company’s blended learning model in a panel session with Banfield Pet Hospital’s Whitney Taylor.

The Penn Foster — Banfield panel session is: How to Empower, Elevate and Motivate Your Workforce with Integrated, Competency-based Education.  Penn Foster’s Britt and Banfield’s Taylor will discuss how Banfield, the largest retail animal hospitality chain in the U.S., is leading by example by pioneering a broad and inclusive program involving more than 1,000 of its staff across the country. Britt and Taylor will also explain how a blended learning core is augmented by a unique operating model that allows students to complete externships across the US, and then sit for national vet tech certification.

“This model is really future-state, in that it uses online education in both academically and applied learning settings to help address an acute labor shortage using novel delivery mechanisms,” said Britt.  “A discussion of the model meshes well with a conference that is focused on the shifting states of competency-based assessments, employers shifting their hiring practices and some in higher education shifting their strategies to competencies.”

In addition, Britt will be joining a panel called “Delivering on the Upskilling Promise,” in the Scaling for Sustainability track. He will be joined by Kent Fuka, Founder and Co-Director, Querium; Adrian Ridner, Chief Executive Officer,; Ronald Stefanski Executive Director, Strategic Alliances, Cengage Learning; and moderated by Mary Wright, Senior Program Manager, JFF. The session will discuss challenges of upskilling the workforce and providing different pathways to delivering on the upskilling promise.

About Penn Foster
Students, employers and partner organizations rely on Penn Foster to build the skills and knowledge to power the 21st century workforce. For over 125 years, Penn Foster has been dedicated to helping people lead more meaningful and productive lives and to improving social outcomes through education. Penn Foster provides career pathways for opportunity youth and adult learners through diverse and affordable online diploma, certificate and degree programs, offered via its high school, career school and college. With more than 30,000 graduates each year, Penn Foster’s online and blended learning programs are delivered in a self-paced, competency-based model wrapped by comprehensive academic, professional and personal support and coaching. For more information, visit


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