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An Interview with Brandon S. Lee, CEO of Terra Dotta


Brandon, on behalf of PORTAL, thank you for taking a moment to speak with us. In a recent company address, you shared details about the new travel security capabilities being incorporated into Terra Dotta Software. With traveler safety becoming increasingly critical and the rising burden of duty of care on universities, can you give us an overview of these new features?


Sure. We are introducing a new product called AlertTraveler that will work in conjunction with Terra Dotta software. There are three main facets of AlertTraveler: country/region/city risk intelligence and advice, real-time alerts, and a check-in feature to let universities know who is safe and who is at risk.

Whether you have been using a Terra Dotta product for five days or five years, there is always more to learn... new procedure to pick up…. new functionality to employ…. new tricks to share with others. And that is why there is the TDU User Conference.

This annual gathering provides TD users the latest techniques and ideas for employing their instance of the software to the fullest; and this year’s conference promises much more. As you read in this space last month, we have exciting new features coming up such as Due Dates for Process Elements and a Prospect Inquiry Form. There will be sessions covering these features and others. Plus, you will have the opportunity to learn about soon-to-be-announced enhancements related to both safety and ISSS.

Add to that sessions on best practices, layout editors, and ways to get the most from your data. Combine them with opportunities to meet one-on-one with TD Support staff, other TD experts, and institutional colleagues who speak the same TD language, and just why would you not be planning to attend the TDU User Conference this April?

Book your hotel room for TDU today! Space is filling fast. The conference rate expires March 8. Find more information and book your room today.


Kerry Geffert
Product Evangeleist, Terra Dotta

The month of March is a focal point for advocacy in the field of international education. Both NAFSA and the Alliance for International Exchange hold their annual Advocacy Days during this month, gathering our colleagues to descend upon Capitol Hill to meet with congressional staffers – and if they are lucky, their congressional representatives – to extol the value of international education in the United States. The annual events have long been important for our profession; however, at few times have our advocacy efforts been as important as they are now. As Erin Gustafson, Chair of NAFSA Region XI and a senior adviser in Yale University’s Office of International Students and Scholars, recently wrote the region saying, “Our joint advocacy efforts now will shape the next few years for international educators.”

Regardless of where one falls on the political spectrum, all forms of media provide ample stories, pictures, memes, cartoons, etc., to support one’s beliefs. Whether on social media, through news sources, or at the water cooler, there are plenty of facts, near facts and made up facts to confirm our opinions or send us into a rage. The challenge is to separate that which is accurate from that which isn’t. 

Read the full article >

Heidi Beliveau is the event coordinator for Terra Dotta. She joined the Terra Dotta family in July of 2015. Her daily responsibilities include planning and coordinating company events as well as any events Terra Dotta attends. Prior to joining Terra Dotta, she was a travel agent for 32 years.

Heidi is a CTC-Certified Travel Consultant, earning this title from The Travel Institute.

Outside of work, Heidi enjoys playing golf, traveling, reading or just spending time with her family. One vacation spot she hopes to visit is Ireland!

Heidi says her favorite part of working at Terra Dotta is “The challenge of keeping up with a million deadlines, as well as the success of when a conference is completed.”

Presenter: Kelsey Dixon

Are you new to your office and don't know where to start? Join us for this webinar that walks through the basics of Terra Dotta software! What are Process Elements? How do students start applications? What is the purpose of a Decision Date? How do I find applications? And what the heck even are Application Cycles, anyway? This webinar will answer all of these questions and introduce the essential elements of the software so you can get down to business.


4:00 PM EST


Presenter: Susan Jordan

Have you noticed that your carefully constructed WYSIWYG content is being ‘manhandled’ by the thing called Responsive Design? Elements in your content are being moved, resized, stacked, or hidden entirely in order to conform to the smaller screens of mobile devices like tablets and phones. Tune in to this presentation to learn how to optimize your content pages and brochures for viewing on screens of any size.


4:00 PM EST


Presenter: Aaron Rhoney

In this webinar, we will discuss the benefits of establishing a maintenance schedule for your Terra Dotta site and provide an overview of the best practices involved with ensuring that your newest round of applications comes in without a hitch. A set maintenance schedule with tasks that are applicable to your office can help keep your data clean and your system running fluidly.


4:00 PM EST


Click here for a list of all upcoming webinars.


Between printed and online materials, it can be daunting to keep up with the professional literature. Let us help you. Each month we will list several online articles that we hope you will find interesting.

Find an article that you believe others will want to read? Send the link to

International students and alcohol: should we be worried?
from EAIE

That ‘Useless’ Liberal Arts Degree Has Become Tech’s Hottest Ticket
from Forbes

7 Improvisation Principles For Becoming a Better Leader
from LinkedIn

Seven Important Facts about International Education
from NAFSA

2016 Agent Barometer survey reveals important shifts in destination appeal and student perceptions
from ICEF Monitor

Are ‘Semester Abroad Accents’ Real or Fake?
from Atlas Obscura

Recent Articles by Terra Dotta:

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