OET Chosen to Beta Test Patroller School Event Registrations

Outdoor Emergency Transportation, also known as OET, has been chosen by the Eastern Division Board of Directors as the beta testing program for the new Patroller School Event Management System.  The system is designed to provide members and affiliates with a simple to search and easy to purchase educational course website.  The goal is to help Ski Patrollers locate the type of courses they might be seeking for professional development and to get them registered and into the class with confirmation.

The Avalanche Program will also be participating in this first season beta test.  Both programs were chosen because they operate the largest two fee-based educational programs within Eastern Division.  One of the hallmarks for smoothing the customer’s purchasing experience is to provide Credit Card processing.  This way students do not need to worry about mailing in checks or application forms.  Everything related to purchasing and preparing for an NSP course will now be handled instantly online — from selecting choices to finalizing payments.  The Event Management System processes participant’s registrations and sends an email confirmation receipt with everything a student requires to get started with their course.  Those taking Avalanche courses receive their homework pre-course assignments, textbooks are shipped directly from NSP headquarters, the Instructor of Record is notified, and students receive confirmation and direct contact information for reaching their Instructor with questions when they require help.

The technology for creating a modern event purchasing system came from Eastern Division’s OET and Avalanche Programs testing a similar system operated by New Hampshire Region.  Although the inspiration came from watching how effective Eastern Pennsylvania Region (EPA) has been in their management of the Elk Mountain Patroller School over the last five years.   EPA produced educational events with the highest attendance and the best customer satisfaction levels across the Division.  They implemented friction-free modern e-commerce based tools that helped event managers simplify the logistical headaches that accompany large events that attract over 125 skiers and snowboarders.  Their pioneering endeavor paved the way for Eastern Division to take note and realize that the growth of educational offerings can only come from finding simpler ways to attract Ski Patrollers and helping course managers by handling the tedious organizational details that often take up hundreds of hours of Instructors time as they prepare the event.

Eastern Division is committed to making this a successful initiative.  Feedback from attendees is welcome.  Please detail any failings you may have encountered, as well as your best experiances.  This season is like a beta test.  We expect to learn and make adjustments.  The goal for the 2019-20 winter season is to roll in all the other Eastern Division NSP Programs:

  • Outdoor Emergency Care
  • Mountain Travel & Rescue
  • Young Adult Program
  • Certified Program
  • Nordic-Backcountry
  • Instructor Development

Simplifying the Customer Experience is “Patroller School’s” Mission

On Sunday, April 29th the Eastern Division Board of Directors inaugurated Patroller School as the official Event Registration website for members seeking Division level training events.  PatrollerSchoool.ORG will now be the centralized website where Eastern Division NSP Programs will be able to post their course offerings and event registrations on a single easy to navigate website.

The goal of the new Patroller School site is to help members and the public to review course choices, select options, and experience a simplified purchasing experience.  Integrated with a modern e-commerce system, the website is designed to guide Patrollers, offer suggestions for travel and lodging, then send customers to a credit card payment system when ready to purchase.

An email confirmation accompanies each Patrollers purchase.  It includes all information required before arrival and sends each student the direct contact info for reaching the Instructor of Record (IOR).   Questions about preparation or textbook studying can be answered directly by the teachers and organizers.

Printing your confirmation and bring it to the event to streamline morning registration.  If you are participating in an OET Patroller School weekend event with over a hundred other NSP members,  check-in could be an easy as bar-code scanning your ticket upon arrival and being directed to your assigned group.  Fast, simple and smoothly organized s the goal of Eastern Division’s Board when inaugurating this modern approach to educational course deployment.

During the 2018-19 winter ski season, two educational programs have been chosen to beta test the new Event e-commerce system.   Avalanche and OET both teach courses that require paying fees.  Between the two departments, over five hundred Ski Patroller members attend a variety of courses.  Some events cost as low as $40/day for a Toboggan Training day.  High-end Avalanche certification courses can sell for as high as $400.

After the season concludes, Eastern Division is committed to scaling the Patroller School Event Management System to all other educational departments.  The goal is to simplify course deployment around the division’s territory for both the Instructors organizing the events as well as for the regular Patroller member looking to join a training event.

Patroller School goes Division-wide

Patroller Schools have been an Eastern Division NSP organically grown phenomenon for almost ten years.  EMARI Region celebrated their thirtieth year teaching such events at Sunday River, Maine during the 2018 winter season.  Eastern Pennsylvania Region has run similar events at  Elk Mountain for just as long.  But the official name of Patroller School appeared nine years ago when Terry Randolf developed the first weekend Ski Patrol training event at Killington Vermont.

Terry and the Southern Vermont Region coined the name “Patroller School” and integrated the fusion between recertifying Instructors with the demands of regular patrollers looking for educational seminars.  Since then, all other large weekend based events have switched their name and their format to follow .

Patroller School has become a traditional weekend event for hundreds of Eastern Division NSP members looking for an opportunity to train at  large mountain resorts.  The draw for Patrollers has been two-fold:  seeking an opportunity to train on more difficult terrain and creating friendships with Ski Patrollers for all over the Division.  Many of the smaller ski areas and resorts don’t have an opportunity to train on moguls; Patroller School events were designed to provide the more difficult terrain for training toboggan handling that individuals seek.  Although less challenging seminars are available, those preparing for the Senior Program Evaluations make up the largest group of attendees.   Plus most participants return year after year because they have made many friends off the slopes by attending the evening banquet, or just hanging out at the local patrol watering hole on Saturday night.

Patroller School has grown out of the Outdoor Emergency Transportation (OET) program as a way of offering higher level training only available at the big mountain resorts.  Over the years, the OET Division Staff has created a wide range of training seminars that span across easy terrain, Women’s specific training, snowboard specific training as well as Telemark events at select venues.  Now Patroller School will represent and promote all of the training events and seminars offered by Eastern Division’s various NSP programs.

If you are looking for a fun weekend with enjoyable training options, from easy to challenging, consider finding a Patroller School event.  Visit the Monthly Calendar or search for events by specific NSP educational disciplines.  Eastern Division wants to help members and the public to find and register for the best courses and training available.  Check out the options and join us for a weekend of fun training, education and comradery with Patrollers from all over!