Agenda for Excellence 1995-2000



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No. 32, SUPPLEMENT: Agenda for Excellence 1995-2000 (~ 375 k; 32 pages)

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[Six Academic Priorities]


The University will solidify and advance its position as one of the premier research and teaching universities in the nation and in the world.

This was clearly established as the preeminent goal. Each of the subsequent goals was in service of this first, simple statement of purpose. Because a world-class research university must succeed fully on two educational levels--undergraduate and graduate/professional--Goal 1 was subdivided to reflect this fact. Subgoal 1(a), which follows, sets forth Penn's ambition for its undergraduate programs:

Subgoal 1(a). Penn's exceptional undergraduate programs will position it among a select group of research universities as a school of choice for the ablest undergraduates in the nation and in the world. To enhance its ability to fulfill its mission, the University will be considered among the top ten in undergraduate education.

There is a great deal of evidence that Penn's undergraduate programs have been notably strengthened and enhanced over the past five years. Much of this evidence will be presented here in response to the several strategic initiatives that were published beneath subgoal 1(a) in the Agenda. This same approach will be followed throughout this report, i.e., goals and strategic initiatives will be reprinted as they appear in the Agenda, and relevant accomplishments will be grouped around them. Here and elsewhere in the report, however, examples of important progress will also be offered that may not correspond neatly to particular strategic initiatives devised five years ago. These simply reflect the evolution of priorities over time--and of the University itself.

As preface to what follows, it is remarkable to note the rise in Penn's ranking as an undergraduate institution. Since 1994, according to U.S. News and World Report, Penn's national rank has risen from #16 to #6. Penn is also attracting more accomplished cohorts of students every year.

Our applications have risen dramatically and the yield has improved steadily over this period. Since 1994, applications have risen from approximately 13,700 to 19,000, with the yield increasing from 47% to 55.5%. The number of early decision applicants surpasses all previous highs. Penn received 2,833 applications for early admission into the Class of 2005, a 10.4 percent increase over last year's total of 2,570. Penn has clearly accomplished the goal of being considered a school of choice for the ablest undergraduates in the nation and in the world.

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Strategic Initiatives for Subgoal 1(a)

I. Implement the 21st Century Project for the Undergraduate Experience.

A. Promote curricular reform and innovation through the Provost, working with the Council of Undergraduate Deans.

    1. Conduct regular curriculum reviews.
    2. Expand cross-school and cross-disciplinary programs.

B. Expand undergraduate research and service-learning opportunities.

    1. Establish an undergraduate research resource center.
    2. Seek external support for expanded undergraduate research.

C. Develop collegiate model to provide setting for new undergraduate experience.

D. Take steps to improve advising.

    1. Expand the role of faculty as mentors and clarify the roles and responsibilities of the professional advising staff.
    2. Improve the technology used to provide information on the many academic options at Penn.
    3. Enhance departmental communication with students through advanced electronic technology.

E. Assure excellence in undergraduate teaching.

    1. Establish a teaching resource center that offers opportunities for all faculty to improve their teaching.
    2. Create additional incentives for excellent undergraduate teaching.
    3. Develop and promote the use of technology in teaching.

F. Improve student services.

    1. Restructure student services to better support the models developed in the 21st Century Project.

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A. Promote curricular reform and innovation through the Provost, working with the Council of Undergraduate Deans.

1. Conduct regular curriculum reviews.

The College: Starting in the fall of 2000, the College has implemented a Pilot Curriculum. Approximately 200 of the 1600 entering freshmen in the Class of 2004 are participating in the pilot, in which the ten courses of the General Requirement are replaced with four team-taught interdisciplinary courses designed to give students an introduction to broad areas of knowledge and inquiry. In addition, students in the pilot are required to undertake a research experience in their major. Increased emphasis is also placed on the development of oral communications skills. Students in the pilot develop a comprehensive academic plan to be worked out in consultation with their primary advisor. At the end of five years, the faculty of the School of Arts and Sciences will decide whether to extend the Pilot Curriculum to all students, based on an evaluation of educational outcomes by the Pilot Evaluation Committee. Currently, the committee is identifying measures and conducting interviews with students, faculty and advisors.

The College also has added new offerings for all students: (1) a Quantitative Skills Requirement was introduced for students entering in the fall of 1998; (2) Speaking Across the University was established in 1999 and now sponsors courses with a significant oral communications component.

Wharton: Over the past decade the Wharton School curriculum has increased its emphasis on an international perspective, as embodied in a foreign language requirement and a Global Environment requirement; an increased emphasis on oral and written communication skills; and required leadership education for all students. The curriculum underwent a two-year review by the Undergraduate Curriculum Committee in AY 1996-97 and 1997-98.

Engineering and Applied Science: Currently, there are two initiatives underway affecting the undergraduate curriculum in SEAS. The first initiative is focused on the freshman year experience and is examining a common core of course material such as technical writing, ethics, webpage design, and library use. Focus groups are used to define steps that need to be taken. The second initiative is focused more broadly on developing new boutique programs; balancing the majors and the core; reviewing the role and purpose of the Bachelor of Applied Science Degree; incorporating professional education into the curriculum; globalizing the undergraduate experience; incorporating biological sciences into engineering education; and expanding the role of technology inside and outside the classroom. The Engineering Deans Advisory Group, a SEAS student organization, gives monthly input and feedback directly to the school Deans.

In addition, new courses, including CSE 100 (Computer Science and Engineering) were developed for non-SEAS students in order to provide additional opportunities for technology education desired by students in the College and Wharton. Enrollment in CSE 100 will increase next year due to student demand, and additional courses are being designed. The School appointed Senior Fellow Thomas Cassel as director of a new program in Engineering Entrepreneurship, another innovative and very popular course. We streamlined our communications to incoming freshmen and improved on our advance registration processes for them.

Nursing: Critical to the excellence of the undergraduate Nursing program is the integration of research opportunities for students. All undergraduates must now complete a culminating analysis of the evidence-base in a relevant research area. In addition, a serious effort has been underway for several years to ensure linkages of undergraduates to faculty researchers. Undergraduate students also have several opportunities to broaden their educational experience beyond the campus. In addition to the School's long-standing exchange programs in Israel and the United Kingdom, the School has launched exchange programs in Mexico and in Canada.

2. Expand cross-school and cross-disciplinary programs.

Interdisciplinary and cross-school programs are one of Penn's great strengths not only in graduate and professional studies, but at the undergraduate level as well. Students can select a major in one school and take elective courses, a minor or a second degree in another school. Thanks to the continuing development of interdisciplinary programs over the past five years, no other institution in America can offer an undergraduate student more opportunities for cross-disciplinary study in joint and dual degree programs.

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New joint and dual degree programs established since 1995 include:

The Program in Nursing and Health Care Management: Focuses on the dynamic changes in the delivery and financing of health care services in the United States. The curriculum allows students to gain expertise in patient care as well as in business and management.

Computer and Cognitive Science: Artificial Intelligence: A cross-disciplinary program associated with the Institute for Research in Cognitive Science, the Department of Computer and Information Science in SEAS and various departments in the College at Penn.

Environment and Technology: Integrates a rigorous environmental engineering education with an understanding of the complex scientific, technological and political aspects of environmental problems.

The Nursing and Computer Science Program: Prepares professionals for careers in the emerging field of health-care information and management systems and combines a strong foundation in computer technology with the clinical skills and knowledge unique to nursing.

New submatriculation programs offered at Penn include:

BA/MS.Ed. Program: Students in the College and SEAS may sub-matriculate into GSE. The program allows students to complete requirements for both an undergraduate degree and a MS.Ed. with a fifth year of study.

Juris Doctor Program: Undergraduate students in their fourth year of study at Penn can submatriculate into the Law School's JD program and combine the broad overview of their undergraduate studies with the professional focus of preparation in the law, usually in six years.

BA/MCP Program: Students majoring in Urban Studies may submatriculate into the Master of City Planning program to obtain the professional skills needed to work in the field of urban affairs and planning. This reduces the length of their combined degrees from six years to five.

Intensive Major in Architecture: The architecture major in the College has been modified to allow a small number of the most promising students to begin taking graduate level courses while completing their undergraduate degree, thereby shortening the length of time to receive a M.Arch degree to two instead of three years.

Key examples of Penn's numerous cross-disciplinary programs are:

Health and Societies: Based in History and Sociology of Science, this new major focuses on the relationships between health and societies and prepares students for careers in the health professions, or specialization in such fields as law, government, journalism and business. A capstone seminar is required as well as a research project or practicum.

Molecular Life Sciences: Offered to undergraduates interested in pursuing careers in the biological sciences, including medicine and biological research. These Vagelos Scholars participate in summer research internships, for which they receive support, during at least two, and ideally four, summers.

Digital Media Design: Offered by SEAS, Annenberg, and GSFA. Students receive a foundation in the theoretical, artistic and aesthetic aspects of Digital Media Design as well as theory and research on viewers' responses to and uses of visual media, including individual psychological reactions and broader socio-cultural effects.

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B. Expand undergraduate research and service-learning opportunities.

1. Establish an undergraduate research resource center and service-learning opportunities: The Center for Undergraduate Research and Fellowships (CURF) was created in the fall 2000 semester. Located in the newly-renamed Arts, Research and Culture House, CURF will serve as a central clearinghouse for all undergraduate students interested in participating in research and/or applying for post-baccalaureate fellowships. CURF also houses Penn's University-wide honors programs, the Benjamin Franklin Scholars and University Scholars programs.

Penn is one of the nation's leaders in sponsoring academically-based service-learning courses, with over 75 such courses being offered in such disciplines as Anthropology, Classical Studies, English, Economics, Education, Linguistics and Landscape Architecture. Offerings range from a course on Health in Urban Communities, which prepares Penn undergraduates to develop a curriculum and teach health topics to nearby middle school students, to a seminar on the Literature of Social Vision that involves students and faculty from both Penn and West Philadelphia High School. Student participation in these courses is enhanced by a roster of service opportunities sponsored by Civic House, the University's new hub for community service activities.

2. Seek external support for expanded undergraduate research: Penn is actively seeking funds in support of CURF's work. Among the new funds that have been created are the Vagelos undergraduate research funds, which include stipends for all summer research projects and financial aid for the Vagelos scholars. Such funds greatly enhance the Center's ability to fund undergraduate research.

C. Develop a collegiate model to provide a setting for the new undergraduate experience.

Recognizing the importance of better integrating students' residential experiences with their intellectual life, Penn created a new College House system in the fall of 1999. The system consists of a network of twelve College Houses, each of which has:

  • A Faculty Master who is a tenured faculty member who lives in and directs the intellectual life of the House;
  • A House Dean who is a live-in academic advisor and operations director for the House;
  • At least one Faculty or Senior Fellow who is a faculty or senior staff member who lives in and provides students with academic advising and programming; and
  • Access to academic support services provided through the Wheel project.

The twelve College Houses, which accommodate almost 5400 undergraduates from all four undergraduate schools and from all years of undergraduate study, are microcosms of this research university, where students, faculty, and staff teach and learn in an environment that does not know the arbitrary limitations of class "room" and class "time." While all Houses are open to all students, more than twenty Residential Programs within the Houses allow students with common academic interests to live and work together. Demand for on-campus housing has greatly increased as a result of the establishment of the College House system, indicating students' positive response.

The Houses are a new locus for primary academic and college-life advising, with House Deans providing first-line support for students. They are also fully integrated into the College of Arts and Science's new arrangement of freshman advising. Further, in collaboration with the College of Arts and Sciences, more than a dozen credit courses have been held in the College Houses over the past two years, and that program has now been expanded to include all four undergraduate schools. The Penn Reading Project, which serves all first-year students, is organized by the Office of College Houses and Academic Services, and house councils provide student leadership opportunities in all the Houses.

The Houses have also provided academic support, bringing help that is "smarter than your roommate" to students when and where they need it-at home and after the classrooms and offices have closed. The online and in-person "Wheel" delivers advising in mathematics, writing, library research, foreign languages, CSE, and career services around the clock. The Wheel's strongest "spoke" is computing, where Penn's team of College House ITAs run computer labs in all the Houses and provide quick help for hardware and software problems.


To complement the College House system, two student-initiated hub facilities have been developed where the entire University community can come together. These hubs, Civic House and Kelly Writers House, are novel enterprises that have drawn national attention and praise for the range of innovative programs they offer.

As a venue for programs and resources for students engaged in meaningful community service activities and projects, Civic House has strengthened ties between Penn students and our West Philadelphia neighbors.

Kelly Writers House, meanwhile, has grown into one of the most vibrant spaces on campus. Each week, more than 500 writers, readers, and literature lovers converge on this House to engage in informal intellectual conversation with professors and to partake of lectures and readings by prominent scholars and national, local, and aspiring novelists, essayists, and poets. Students, faculty, and staff are also drawn to the cornucopia of writing classes, tutoring programs, and other opportunities for meaningful interaction at Kelly Writers House.

The success of Civic House and Kelly Writers House has encouraged plans for other hubs, including one for Management and Technology.

D. Take steps to improve advising.

  • Expand the role of faculty as mentors and clarify the roles and responsibilities of the professional advising staff

Beginning in 2000, the College undertook a major overhaul of its advising system. The Dean of the College created a new position, Dean of Freshmen. The Dean of Freshmen is responsible for coordinating all academic services for the freshmen class as well as serving as Director of Academic Advising for the College. In the new system, each freshman is assigned to a primary advisor who is either a member of the teaching faculty, a College House Dean, or a member of the professional staff. The College has also increased it support and training of advisors and is currently exploring methods of integrating its advising program more closely with the College House system.

At Wharton this fall, professional advisors went on the road by visiting all Management 100 classes during pre-registration. With TAs by their side, the advisors ran academic and peer panels to help freshmen plan their spring schedules. Also, with the help of the College House Deans, academic advisors conduct basic advising sessions in the College Houses.

Wharton also provides webCafé--virtual classrooms--to every section of Management 100: the largest core required course in the nation to supplement traditional classrooms with web-based meeting rooms. Each e-room houses the course instructor, academic advisor, TA, and four student teams. By housing instructors, advisors, and students in their own virtual meeting rooms, webCafé provides new avenues for exchange outside of class times, fosters curricular innovation, and supports academic and peer advising.

The undergraduate advising program at the School of Nursing has been considered a model in the University since its inception in the early 1980s. Upon admission to the School, undergraduates are assigned a faculty advisor who remains with them throughout their time at Penn. The School's newly developed Office of Academic Services provides intensive and ongoing orientation sessions for advisors and backup advising support for students when needed.

Advising remains a top priority in SEAS:

  • All faculty in SEAS advise undergraduates.
  • SEAS played an instrumental role in the development of electronic course planning worksheets, and advising materials are on the web.
  • SEAS has made dramatic improvements in its peer advising activities, including organizing and running programs to train peer advisors. The School sponsors a Leadership Workshop series, and each department has a dinner in the fall for any interested students, but especially for freshmen. Considerable informal advising occurs as well as selection of majors.
  • EAS 101 is a course designed to help Curriculum Deferred students select a major.

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  • Improve the technology used to provide information on the many academic options at Penn and enhance departmental communication with students through advanced electronic technology

Penn-In-Touch was among the very earliest applications to provide web accessible, direct access to students for all their registration and financial information and transactions. Recently expanded (Penn-In-Touch 2000), it now includes the Advisor-In-Touch system which provides up-to-date academic information in a web-based system for all academic advisors as well as students. In addition, a new curriculum planning guide for students and a graduation audit system for the School offices came online in October 2000.

In 1999 VPUL and ISC partnered to develop an online calendaring system to provide a mechanism to enter and display University events. The primary constituents of the web-based calendar are the undergraduate and graduate student associations; it gives them the ability to notify the larger community of student-oriented events.

E. Assure excellence in undergraduate teaching.

  • Establish a teaching resource center that offers opportunities for all faculty to improve their teaching

The School of Arts and Sciences introduced the Center for Teaching and Learning in July 1999. Its mission is to help standing faculty, adjunct faculty and teaching assistants achieve excellence in the classroom. It accomplishes its mission by individual consultation with faculty and by special seminars and workshops. The response to the center has been positive. Several instructors have reported improvement in their course evaluations, and most found that interaction with the center gave them greater confidence in preparing for courses and teaching individual classes. In its first two years, the center has been able to provide individual assistance for over 85 instructors and has interacted through departmental and other presentations with approximately 100 more instructors. Future plans call for increased individual consultation, broader coverage of departments and development of specific programs for graduate assistants.

  • Create additional incentives for excellent undergraduate teaching

The new annual Penn Prize for Excellence in Teaching by Graduate Students was first awarded in April, 2000. This prize, supported by a gift from President Rodin, is notable for two things: all nominations are made by former or current undergraduate students of the nominees, and it is open to graduate students in all schools and graduate groups.

In addition to the Lindback awards, the School of Arts and Sciences has added several new means of rewarding distinguished teaching:

The Edmund J. and Louise W. Kahn Professorship for Faculty Excellence was established in 1997 to recognize an outstanding scholar who is also a distinguished and innovative teacher.

The Edmund J. and Louise W. Kahn Award for Educational Excellence honors the collective teaching efforts of a department or program.

Three new SAS teaching awards were established in Spring 2000, honoring innovation in teaching, mentorship of undergraduate research, and distinguished teaching by an assistant professor.

The Wharton School continues to offer ten Excellence in Teaching Awards to the best undergraduate instructors each year, and an annual award for the best graduate student instructor.

The Annenberg School has created a term professorship awarded to a faculty member for outstanding undergraduate teaching. Lindback award winner Carolyn Marvin holds that appointment.

The School of Nursing developed two new awards designed to recognize the teaching and advising skills of faculty. The Undergraduate Advisor's Award acknowledges those members of the faculty who demonstrate commitment to students through their knowledge, accessibility, and responsiveness. The Academic Support Staff Teaching Award recognizes excellence in teaching by members of the academic support staff, who are crucial to the success of the School's academic programs.

  • Develop and promote the use of technology in teaching

University-wide, Penn's Information Technology (IT) Roundtable created the New Tools for Teaching initiative to investigate instructional technology tools for faculty. The first result of New Tools for Teaching has been deployment of Blackboard Course Info. The suite of Blackboard tools includes e-mail lists, discussion boards, web-based information (including audio and video files), among others. Blackboard is used for course support in the College, Engineering, Education, Fine Arts, Medicine, Nursing, Law and Annenberg, with approximately 10,000 students in 2000-2001.

In this project, ISC and the Library are partnering with the schools to link information services around the campus in support of education. Enrolled students are loaded into Blackboard automatically, using data from the Student Record System in the Data Warehouse, with accounts and passwords from ISC's PennNet Authentication System, to a server and distributed over the network to students and faculty anytime, anyplace. During classes, web pages are displayed on computers and projectors installed through the Central Pool Classrooms Technology Services group. Students get support using Blackboard through Residential Computing and faculty get support through their Local Support Providers.

Many of the services provided through Blackboard were already available at Penn as stand-alone services. Blackboard makes the services easier to use, such as the creation of course web pages, course discussion groups, mailing lists and so on. However, the online quizzing functionality of Blackboard is new. Faculty can now create quizzes easily. Through the Mellon Engineering Program, engineering faculty use quizzes to prepare students for laboratory experiments. Students are required to take the quizzes before the lab begins, so the students find out what they need help with at the beginning of the lab session, rather than after the experiment is done and the report does not work. In introductory Economics courses, weekly quizzes assure that students are keeping up with the material and learning the basic concepts. Rather than finding out how they are doing after the first midterm, students know how they are doing every week.

In addition to direct course support, Blackboard is used for many other activities in support of education. The Mellon Writing Program uses Blackboard as its principal method of communication with students working to satisfy the writing requirement. This is an online community, conducting discussions, posting assignments and reviewing each other's papers through the web. Academic Support Programs provides old exams from a variety of undergraduate courses.

SEAS has also designed a flexible, high-tech classroom for digital videotaping and video conferencing, containing 20 laptop computers for participant interaction. This classroom provides distance learning opportunities such as the collaborations between SEAS and Lehigh University using joint classroom lectures. SEAS is planning a similar pilot venture with Edinburgh University. The Annenberg School has also created a computer integrated teleconferencing classroom and conducted its first cross-country class in it.

In October 2000, the School of Nursing opened the Mathias J. Brunner Instructional Technology Center which will significantly augment education through state-of-the-art simulations and learning opportunities. In addition, the school expanded its use of distance education to the pediatric nurse practitioner masters programs. Classroom transmissions are now being sent to St. Jude's Children's Research Hospital in Memphis, Tennessee as well as to several locations throughout the Commonwealth.

F. Improve student services

  • Restructure student services to better support the models developed in the 21st Century Project.

The Agenda charged the Division of the Vice Provost for University Life to restructure student services to better support the models developed in the 21st Century Project. VPUL staffing was reengineered, some programs were outsourced, and a number of functions were reduced and/or eliminated.

The division consolidated the number of VPUL departments from a high of 34 units in FY 1995 to a current total of 15 departments grouped in five related clusters. New Student Orientation, the Pre-Freshman Program, PENNCAP tutorial and learning resources, mentoring programs, veterans, and pre-college support programs were consolidated into one Department of Academic Support Programs. Administrative support functions were streamlined, the physical locations of most services were shifted to a single, on-campus, residential location, and management oversight was vested in a single director. VPUL also consolidated facilities support, including student program spaces, departmental offices, campus union, student performing arts, fraternity and sorority houses, and University classrooms, into one unit.

In addition, VPUL eliminated a number of positions and replaced them with staff who could meet newly-mandated needs, such as a Learning Disabilities Specialist; University Alcohol Coordinator; Communications Director; Perelman Quadrangle Facilities Operations staff; PAACH staff; and La Casa Latina staff.

The division continues to offer a wide variety of important student support services such as career services; academic support; counseling, psychological and psychiatric services; health education and alcohol/drug abuse services; volunteer and community services; and social and cultural services. VPUL also helped to create new resources and services such as La Casa Latina, the ARCH (Arts, Research and Cultures House), and PAACH. The addition of an expanded student union complex--including Perelman Quadrangle and new performing arts facilities--has provided wonderful new spaces and choices for Penn students.

Campus Express, a new approach to service delivery, has been implemented by the Division of Business Services to give students one-stop shopping, more interactive communication and high quality customer service. In particular, it:

  • Provides students enhanced features and essential information "real time"--in an integrated format.
  • Decreases the time and hassle spent accessing services from various departments in the fall.
  • Reduces administrative processing.
  • Directly supports the overall IT Advisory Board vision for building comprehensive solutions.

Business Services has also greatly improved campus dining services, with the following highlights:

  • Almost 6,600 meal contracts as of 9/30/00
  • An integrated kosher dining service for daily meals and special occasions
  • New contract with Aramark for vending services, which includes the Strothers Co., a minority-owned Philadelphia-based firm
  • The renovation of Hill Dining Hall in September 1999, on time and on budget
  • The successful opening of all food venues in Perelman Quad.

Student Financial Services has undergone a transformation over the last five years, focusing on reducing liability, increasing revenue and improving services to students and parents.

Undergraduate students admitted to the class of 2005 will be able to utilize PennPlan Online, a new program that helps students and their families develop a plan for the cost of attending Penn. It provides an interactive worksheet and tutorial to help guide new Penn families though this often difficult decision-making process. Other PennPlan features include:

  • The ability to view financial aid letters on-line and an explanation of what each component means and what must be done to fulfill the requirements to obtain the award.
  • Estimate monthly payments using different financing options
  • Tailoring budgets and expenses to meet specific needs

Students also can experience dramatically enhanced campus retail options at their doorsteps. (More details on retail development are provided later in this report under goal 3.)

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II. Identify and secure financial resources to support the initiatives of the 21st Century Project.

The 21st century Project was funded by a grant from the Pew Charitable Trusts, supporting several innovative initiatives in the Agenda for Excellence. Many of the initiatives have now been incorporated into the ongoing budgets of the Schools and other units. Specific new gifts by trustees and others have provided funding for:

  • The Penn Humanities Forum

The Humanities Forum was launched in 1999 to foster collaboration across SAS's humanities departments, to explore connections among the humanities, social sciences, natural sciences, and Penn's professional schools, and to create links between Penn humanists and the Philadelphia community. Its first two interdisciplinary efforts and seminars have focused on human nature and style.

  • Fox Leadership Program

The Fox Program was established to provide students with training in leadership skills within the liberal arts environment of the College; it includes the very popular Lessons in Leadership program which brings to campus successful College alumni from a variety of job sectors, and sponsorship of courses with a public speaking component.

  • Kelly Writers House and Civic House

Trustee and other gifts have supported space and programming for student-initiated "hub" facilities which complement the College House system.

  • Perelman Quadrangle

$40 million was raised for more than 40 named spaces in the renovated and expanded complex at the historic heart of Penn's campus. In addition, the first phase of the $60 million development program for the College House project has moved forward.

III. Launch an initiative to raise funds for the University's financial aid endowment.

For undergraduate aid, the endowment has increased by $116 million, reaching 58% of the Agenda goal to date. Trustee challenge grants have had a particular impact in leveraging smaller gifts, many of them from younger alumni. 386 new financial aid funds have been created to date during the Agenda, 64 of them by young alumni. The highest FY01 priority is to create additional challenge opportunities to help reach $200 million goal by the end of FY03.

IV. Enhance activities that improve Penn's attractiveness to undergraduates.

A. Continue to promote Penn aggressively as an institution that educates the best students and produces future leaders.

  • Update and reinvigorate all admissions materials

Five years ago the University launched a web site that included a home page and supporting pages for the Office of Undergraduate Admissions. Since that time, the Admissions site has emerged as a primary information source for prospective students and parents. The site has been redesigned twice, most recently during the summer of 2000. The summer 2000 redesign was done in collaboration with the four undergraduate schools so that the site would emphasize Penn as a premier academic institution. The addition of an online virtual tour of Penn's campus allows prospective students to get a feel for the attractiveness of Penn's large urban campus. It also now includes pertinent information about the admissions process, an on-line information request and application and travel schedules for the Admissions staff. The site currently receives between 40,000-50,000 hits per week. Last year we received approximately 12% of undergraduate applications from on-line sources.

Admit packets, admission videos and other publications have also been redesigned, and in student surveys administered by the Admissions Office applicants most often rate the publications and web site as very good or excellent. Only campus visits surpass these as a positive source of information among the admitted group.

  • Strengthen efforts to recruit and enroll underrepresented minority students and programs aimed at their retention

Every admissions officer is charged with minority recruitment. This represents a change in practice from five years ago. The minority recruitment program (MRP) has a director, assistant director and program assistant, but instead of relying on these individuals to execute all minority recruitment activities, Penn expects them to lead, direct and supplement the efforts of each regional director. This approach, which is team oriented, has paid positive dividends. Regional directors are responsible for developing strategies that reach talented students within their designated recruitment areas. The MRP staff initiates programming which includes Fall Open House and Scholars, arranges tours and information sessions for special groups and serves as liaisons to on-campus organizations and facilities like the UMC, La Casa Latina and the Latino Coalition. The number of minority applicants has risen, and the percentage of the class that is comprised of underrepresented groups reached an all-time high for the class of 2004.

Minority student retention: Starting in 1996, Director of Institutional Research Barney Lentz has chaired a University-wide committee charged to examine issues of minority student retention at Penn. This committee analyzed data and implemented changes in procedures that, among other things, improved student interactions with Student Financial Services. Retention of minority students has improved over the past several years. The Council of Undergraduate Deans (CUD) is taking an active role in monitoring this issue, and the Provost has now appointed a new standing committee that reports to CUD and to the Pluralism committee of the University Council. The committee, chaired by a faculty member, will examine data on the retention of minority students; examine the academic careers of minority students at Penn to determine patterns of success as well as areas needing improvement; and recommend programs designed to improve the experience of minority students at the University.

  • Improve local transportation services for students

Although transportation services were not specifically highlighted in the Agenda, they have been much improved since 1995, making it easier for students to take part in the vibrant city life of Philadelphia. Campus Transportation (Penn shuttle service, handi-vans, Center City and West Philadelphia circuits) has been expanded to a wider territory, with more hours, and greater frequency, reaching a peak of 483,200 rides in fiscal 1998. Penn also has instituted and subsidized a line of student-oriented passes with SEPTA that encourage more extensive student usage of public transportation. And the new University Circulator (or "LUCY") began van service around University City in the summer of 1999. The system is operated by SEPTA through a contract with the University City District, and the service is free to University students, staff, and faculty.

B. Develop new and up-to-date recreational athletic facilities.

$13.5 million has been raised since 1995 for improvement of campus recreation facilities, including trustee David Pottruck's $10 million naming gift for renovation and expansion of Gimbel Gymnasium. The new Pottruck Center, Katz Fitness Center, Murphy Field, Bower Field, Palestra renovations, women's locker rooms and training rooms are examples of our progress.

A major gift of $10 million for new athletic facilities from trustee George Weiss was announced in January 2001. This gift--and the prospect of new and improved facilities--will significantly help Penn's recruitment of scholar-athletes.

DRIA, in conjunction with the Office of Admissions and with the support of the Deans of the undergraduate schools, has implemented a plan to achieve the following goals:

  • Ensure that student-athletes are academically representative of the overall admitted class.
  • Give coaches a reliable sense of admissions outcomes.
  • Allocate admissions slots fairly and strategically among different teams, prioritizing those sports that have the greatest chances of success.

V. Enhance student career placement services to provide excellent support for all students in a competitive job market.

Over the past five years, Career Services has improved service to students, alumni, employers, and others through extensive staff development and the expanded use of technology. All permanent job listings, as well as internships, are now online. Career Services was a founding member of an online internship consortium with several national research universities. Penn students now have access to over 18,000 internships annually throughout the country, up from 3,000 five years ago. In addition, graduate students can consult our funding database of pre- and post-doctoral fellowship opportunities.

Current students and alumni can also access the Penn Career Network to find alumni mentors who provide career advice on a particular industry, field, function, or geographical area. Further, students using the On-Campus Recruiting Service to find work after graduation have had, for four years, a web-based system, developed in-house, to research companies and to bid and sign up for interviews. Students can also go to the website to find out which letters of recommendation are in their credentials file and when a request to have recommendations sent was mailed.

Penn is one of the only universities in the world that puts the results of its graduates' Career Plans Survey online, with salary averages by school, major, and career field. Employers can easily see what salary they should offer to be competitive at Penn, and students can see what the market is paying. The Career Services site last year received almost 4 million hits from around the world.

Career Services also makes effective use of e-mail distribution lists. Students sign up to receive regular, sometimes daily, e-mails from counselors. Last year, nearly 8,000 undergraduates and almost 5,000 graduate and professional students were on at least one list. Thus, Penn students can now get career advice from a trained counselor well beyond the usual business day.

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Subgoal 1(b): Penn's academic departments and programs will be considered among the top ten in the United States or will develop and implement strategies for moving toward the top tier. Penn's doctoral and professional programs will be the programs of choice for the ablest graduate and professional students in the nation and in the world.

By way of introduction, below is a table showing School rankings from U.S. News and World Report in 1995 and 2000. Several schools have measurably advanced. Note that the well-grounded GRC rankings of graduate departments and disciplines, last done in 1995, will not be undertaken again for another two years, so there is no available comparison.

School 1995 2001
Medicine 7 4
Nursing (graduate programs) 3 2
Social Work 18 11
Veterinary Medicine/Science NR 2
Business (MBA)
(Ranked Number 1 in Business Week and Financial Times)
2 4
Law 11 10
Education 10 8
Engineering (graduate programs) 31 30

In addition to the rankings in the preceding table, below are merely some of the significant advances that have occurred over the past five years in the graduate or professional programs of the twelve schools.

School of Arts and Sciences

  • Structural operating deficit eliminated
  • Faculty compensation significantly improved
  • Numerous departments ranked in the top echelon by U.S. News, including: English, Economics, History, Mathematics, Psychology, Sociology
  • Improved fundraising: $30 million in subscriptions in FY 2000
  • Life sciences building project underway
  • Reconstituted graduate support packages in the humanities and social sciences to make them competitive with any program in the country.

Wharton School

  • Rated the leading business school in the world
  • Huntsman Hall on schedule: more than $120 million raised
  • Wharton West: development of a comprehensive program agenda, based in California, which will focus on strengthening the Wharton School's ability to serve the global business community.


  • First new building underway in 35 years: New Computer and Information. Science building, Levine Hall under construction, and 10 new faculty chairs identified.
  • Planning is underway for a second building: Whitaker Building, which will provide facilities expansion to support a major increase in biomedical/bio-technology research in SEAS and across the campus.
  • Increased level of energy and focus on excellence under new administration
  • Membership in the National Academy of Engineering (NAE) has almost doubled in the last five years which puts SEAS in the top 10


  • Silverman Hall completed
  • Student quality maintained against severe competition
  • Key faculty retained despite raids from competitors
  • Rapid expansion of International Graduate Law Program and creation of exchange program with foreign law schools.
  • Ranked 3rd in nation in articles published by faculty in major law reviews.


  • 2nd in nation in receipt of NIH funds
  • Completion of BRB II/III and other research space
  • Completion of Future of Medicine development campaign
  • Completion of Curriculum 2000
  • Continuity in face of Health System financial troubles

Dental Medicine

  • Construction of Schattner Building, a 70,000 square foot clinical facility, well underway.
  • Establishment & expansion of Dental Care Network largely complete
  • Outstanding assessment of School quality by external accreditors
  • Launched an internet-based continuing education and public information site.

Veterinary Medicine

  • Annual state funding stabilized and then expanded
  • $18 million state capital appropriation secured for new teaching & research building
  • Two hospitals ranked among the best in the world
  • Clinical funding up 60% from $11 million in 1996 to $17.6 million in 2000
  • 58% increase in research awards to $20 million in FY2000
  • Increase in student selectivity


  • High ranking (#7) among nursing schools in receipt of NIH funding.
  • All Ph.D. students are fully funded and GRE scores have increased from 1025 in 1997 to 1210 for September 2001 incoming class.
  • Completed fiscal analysis of master's programs to identify those that should be closed or consolidated. To date, one program has been closed and six have been consolidated. Three additional programs are targeted for consolidation in the coming year.

Social Work

  • Ranked 6th in nation in faculty publications in peer-reviewed journals
  • All doctoral students fully funded and among the nation's top SW graduate students
  • Numerous faculty have won prestigious national awards in social work

Graduate School of Education

  • Rise in national rankings
  • Ph.D. acceptance rate dropped from 36% to 24%, and yield up from 50% to 72%
  • Renovation of main facility well underway: it will vastly improve student space, technology and academic program space
  • Total research awards doubled from $45 million to $96 million.

Graduate School of Fine Arts

  • Architecture program ranked 5th in national survey, landscape architecture ranked 4th by Gourman, historic preservation tops in field, and city planning on track to break into top ten
  • Digital Media Design is one of leading programs of its kind
  • Addams Hall completed to house courses in fine arts and architecture
  • Practice professorships created
  • Design studios converted into digital design studios

Annenberg School for Communication

  • Recently concluded a two year renovation of the school designed to reconfigure graduate student space, increase research and seminar room capacity, add a teleconferencing center and serve as home for Annenberg Public Policy Center.
  • Opened a Washington APPC program in the National Press Club in l996.
  • With $13 million in grant funding, the APPC is taking the Student Voices model-a national project to increase political engagement and communication skills among high school students - to other cities around the country.

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Strategic Initiatives for Subgoal 1(b)

I. Have each school develop or update its own strategic plan by June 1996, to ensure that it includes the steps necessary to attain or maintain superior academic status by the year 2000. As part of this plan, each school should articulate steps to:

A. Conduct regular departmental reviews.

B. Reenergize or restructure those departments that are vital to the core mission of the school or the University, that are below the school's standard of excellence.

C. Support and encourage efforts among the schools to reward faculty based on criteria for excellence such as teaching achievements, publications, citations, and grants received.

D. Continue working to attract and retain underrepresented minority and women faculty.

II. Establish a rigorous, normative protocol for external review and assessment of each school and inter-school program every five to seven years.

III. Infuse the Research Foundation with new capital by raising money to support areas of research where Penn has clear competitive advantages or where the return on seed money is likely to be high.

IV. Directed by the Provost's Council of Deans, make strategic investments in current and developing cross-disciplinary fields where Penn has or could have nationally recognized strengths.

V. Ensure that Penn's doctoral and professional programs will be the programs of choice. Take steps to:

A. Pursue increased funding for graduate education and training.

B. Encourage innovative and efficient teaching and research groupings of faculty.

C. Seek development of new areas of collaboration in graduate training across the University.

D. Strengthen efforts to attract and retain underrepresented minority and women graduate and professional students.

E. Provide greater opportunities for student interaction across graduate and professional school boundaries, and enrich campus life for graduate and professional students.

F. Conserve resources by eliminating duplication of course offerings across and within schools.

VI. Establish a review process for graduate and professional programs that emphasizes measures such as admission selectivity and ability to place graduates.

A. Each School should conduct regular reviews to assess progress in achieving the school's strategic goals.

Normative School reviews have been a major product of the Agenda for Excellence and are discussed in a later section of this report. Below is a list of internal departmental reviews regularly conducted in individual Schools:

School of Arts and Sciences: SAS has continued its well-established system of reviewing departments approximately every seven years. Each review takes place in three parts (self-study, internal and external review) over the course of three semesters.

Wharton: Every five years, Wharton conducts an internal review of each department examining teaching, research, and service activities, and an evaluation of the department's annually-updated five-year plan. An external advisory group composed of faculty from peer institutions analyzes the report of the internal review committee and submits findings and recommendations to the Dean.

School of Engineering and Applied Science: Under the new administration, SEAS has embarked on a renewed effort to review and critically assess all academic units. The first departmental reviews (Materials Science and Engineering & Electrical Engineering) are planned for this year. All centers are being reviewed as well.

Medical School: The School of Medicine formally reviews its academic departments, centers, and institutes on a six-year schedule. The reviews are conducted by review committees appointed and charged by the Dean. The review process includes a site visit by several external consultants who are nationally known physicians/scientists from other institutions, with expertise closely related to the department under review.

Veterinary Medicine: Department reviews were instituted in 1994. The first was the Department of Clinical Studies, New Bolton Center, with all the other departments reviewed since that time. The School has also reviewed the Center for Animal Health and Productivity in 1998 and will work through the other centers of excellence on a regular basis.

Graduate School of Fine Arts: In the past five years, GSFA has undergone external reviews of the Fine Arts department, Fels Program in Government Administration, and a University review of the historic preservation program. Accreditation reviews were also conducted for Architecture, Landscape Architecture, and City and Regional Planning.

Graduate School of Education: In April 1999 the GSE Standing Faculty formally adopted review guidelines that put each of its four academic Divisions on a five-year cycle of self-study and curriculum review. The process is designed to explicitly address University and School strategic goals, our urban and international academic emphases, and student and academic markets.

School of Social Work: SSW reviews progress toward strategic goals annually. Goals are revised as necessary, and a new strategic plan is developed every five years.

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B. Each School should energize or restructure those departments that are vital to the core mission of the school or the University, that are below the school's standard of excellence, and that have failed to show substantial improvement. Phase out those departments that are neither central to the mission of the school or University, nor markedly ascending in quality.

The Schools of the University have taken this charge very seriously. Resources have been directed to strategically important departments with particular needs, and, in certain other cases, departments have been closed or given new focus. Examples follow.

School of Arts and Sciences: In its 1999 strategic plan, SAS identified six departments (English, History, Biology, Psychology, Political Science, and Economics) for strategic investment. These departments have the greatest potential to create new knowledge and achieve undisputed national distinction; represent fundamental components of an undergraduate liberal arts education; and make important contributions to valuable interdisciplinary and interschool programs (two thirds of the Class of 2000 majored in a subject based in one of these departments). These departments now receive about 50% of the faculty search authorizations in the School and are the focus of its most important facilities initiatives (Life Sciences Quadrangle for Biology and Psychology, renovation of Bennett Hall, return of History to College Hall). SAS phased out the Department of Folklore and Folklife as of 7/1/99; the four faculty became members of other departments related to each professor's most relevant discipline.

Wharton: Wharton has reviewed its portfolio of classes and requirements to remove historically low-enrollment courses and majors. Wharton has also redefined the mission of the Public Policy and Management Department, now known as "Business and Public Policy," to de-emphasize public management and to invest in the broader issue of business-government relations, particularly in an international context. In addition, corporate finance and entrepreneurship have reemerged as important fields in terms of the intellectual challenges and student demand.

School of Medicine: In keeping with its status as one of the country's premier medical schools, the School of Medicine launched a wide range of cutting-edge research centers while restructuring and implementing the curriculum to better prepare tomorrow's physicians for the future of medicine.

As one of the nation's leading recipients of NIH funding, the School of Medicine continued to create research centers that have put Penn on the leading edge of teaching, discovery, treatment, and cure. Among the new centers launched were:

  • Center for Clinical Epidemiology and Biostatistics
  • Center for Bioethics
  • Human Genetics Center
  • Center for Experimental Therapeutics
  • Institute for Medicine and Engineering
  • Center for Research on Reproduction and Women's Health
  • AIDS and HIV Research Center
  • Center for Developmental Biology

Meanwhile, Curriculum 2000 has shifted the emphasis of medical education to preventive medicine and to the integration of subject materials across disciplines. Learning is more active and self-directed, and doctors are taught to be lifelong learners.

Veterinary Medicine: The School has created multi-disciplinary centers of research excellence. The goal of the Centers is to increase opportunities for basic and clinical scientists to engage in collaborative research, increase opportunities for NIH funding of clinically applied research, and hasten the application of advances in basic research to clinical practice. The new centers are:

  • The Center for Germ Cell Research and Animal Transgenesis
  • The Center for Comparative Medical Genetics
  • The Marie Lowe Center for Comparative Oncology
  • The Center for Infectious Disease Research
  • The Center for Aquaculture, and Aquatic Animal Medicine
  • The Allam Center for Exercise Physiology and Sports Medicine

School of Engineering and Applied Science: SEAS has focused on an ambitious effort to energize and restructure the school. SEAS has a new office for research that is charged with overseeing and invigorating the research enterprise in the school and increasing the level of interactions with industry. In keeping with the strong interdisciplinary culture at Penn, SEAS formed interdisciplinary centers in the areas of nanotechnology and human modeling and simulation, centers that cut across school and departmental boundaries. New fund raising efforts have led to new programs designed to improve the infrastructure and to increase the level of activity in bioengineering and computer and information science. New committees in nanotechnology, computational science and neuroengineering are engaged in inter-departmental faculty searches for the best candidates in strategic areas without making departmental affiliation a primary consideration.

The Law School: The Law School has built on its broad range of interdisciplinary enterprises by collaborating with the Schools of Medicine and Social Work to form the Center for Children's Policy, Practice and Research (CCPPR), which is dedicated to helping and protecting abused and neglected children. The School also launched the Journal of Constitutional Law to cultivate innovative scholarship, promote critical perspectives, and revitalize the traditional study of Constitutional law. Finally, the Law School established the Institute for Law and Philosophy, a joint project with the Philosophy Department that support scholarship, symposia and teaching jurisprudence.

Graduate School of Education: Beginning in 1998, GSE began a comprehensive restructuring of the Educational Leadership Division (ELD), GSE's largest academic division. Restructuring the division included re-engineering of administrative functions, elimination of two academic specializations, reorganization of the other specializations to make them more in-line with student and labor-market demands, and total reconceptualization of the teacher education program.

Teaching, Learning & Curriculum (TLC) and Teacher Education prepares graduates for a number of careers, including positions in teacher education within universities and colleges, staff development positions within state and district departments of education, and leadership positions in schools.

The urban agenda continues to be central to GSE's identity and goal-setting as a school. GSE's academic specializations continue to address urban affairs in coursework, associated service-learning opportunities in West Philadelphia schools, and research projects.

Graduate School of Fine Arts: GSFA has rebuilt the graduate programs in Fine Arts and City and Regional Planning, by adding new faculty and leadership, and changing curricula. Across the school, steps were taken to encourage cross registration across disciplines, and new courses were launched that are jointly offered. A design studio was launched in London, working with the Architectural Association.

Nursing: Anticipating the drop in NIH funding, the School added resources to the Center for Nursing Research with two staff members dedicated to grantsmanship and technical support, statistician support, and a faculty consultant for grant development and completion of data-based manuscripts. The Director of the Center for Nursing Research is closely monitoring all RFPs, status of grants, and faculty productivity. Division Chairs have completed a careful analysis of faculty workloads and have adjusted teaching assignments to enhance research and scholarly activity. Proposal submissions have increased. With a grant from The John A. Hartford Foundation, the School opened a Center for Geriatric Nursing Excellence (one of only five in the country). The School's Center for Health Outcomes and Policy Research, Geriatric Nursing Excellence, and Urban Health Research have excelled in research outcomes and the collection of the Center for the Study of the History of Nursing is considered premier, attracting nursing history scholars from around the world.

The School completed a fiscal analysis of its master's programs in 2000 in order to identify those programs that should be closed or consolidated. Three programs are targeted for consolidation in the coming year.

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C. Each School should support and encourage efforts among the schools to reward faculty based on criteria for excellence such as teaching achievements, publications, citations, and grants received.

Examples include:

The School of Arts and Sciences continues to evaluate and compensate faculty according to well-established standards of scholarship, teaching, and service. SAS has moved aggressively to enhance mean faculty salaries, which fall below those of our peer institutions, and this year the salary gap has been reduced. Also, in an effort to increase the availability of School-based discretionary faculty research funds, SAS established the Merriam Research Fund program in July 1999. A fund of $5000 is awarded to faculty at the time of appointment as Assistant Professor and upon promotion to Associate and Full Professor.

The School of Medicine recognizes faculty achievement annually with an "Awards of Excellence" program. For the past five years, the School has augmented its longstanding education awards with four annual research awards and five annual clinical awards, named in honor of past and present Penn leaders.

Veterinary Medicine introduced the Dean's Awards for Leadership in Education. The awards are made on an annual basis and recognize faculty who provide exceptional leadership in educational programs, outstanding teachers, faculty who do an outstanding job as course organizers, or those who create innovative computer assisted learning programs.

In the School of Social Work the Dean meets with each faculty member to review their performance. The review includes scholarly productivity, externally funded research, teaching, service to the school, university and community and doctoral dissertations. These reviews serve as the basis for determining compensation decisions and rewards.

The Graduate School of Fine Arts initiated the G. Holmes Perkins Prize for distinguished faculty teaching, with the recipients selected from nominations by students.

The Graduate School of Education maintained and increased incentives for faculty research through matching stipends, research infrastructure support, and indirect returns on funded research. The school closely monitors quality of teaching (and, increasingly, doctoral student mentoring) through annual faculty self-evaluation and salary review.

The School of Engineering and Applied Science has created a new office for research and the position of the Deputy Dean with the responsibility of overseeing and invigorating the research enterprise in the school and increasing the level of interactions with industry. A new award to recognize excellence in research and to reward outstanding faculty have been instituted.

Named chairs continue to be an important means of rewarding faculty excellence and have been an important fund-raising priority in many of our Schools. Below is a listing of professorships endowed over the past five years:

Year Endowed Professorships: Total $87,446,000 School Purpose
1997 Anonymous WHA Dean's Discretion
1997 Boettner Institute of Financial Gerontology SSW/SAS Financial Gerontology
1997 Clinical Practices of the Department of Anesthesia MED Anesthesia
1997 Sehoon Lee, WG'75 WHA Dean's Discretion
1997 Pendergrass Education and Research Foundation MED Radiology
1997 Geri Skirkanich & J. Peter Skirkanich, W'65 SEAS Young Faculty
1997 Alvin L. Snowiss, C'52, L'55 LAW Law and the Free Enterprise System
1998 Estate of Pamela H. Cole, NAF VET Young Investigators
1998 Robert L. Hart MED Bioethics
1998 Charles A. Heimbold, Jr., L'60 LAW TBD
1998 Independence Foundation LAW Business Law
1998 The late Louise W. Kahn & the late Edmund J. Kahn, W'25 SAS Faculty Excellence
1998 C. H. Lin, G'72 SEAS Humphrey Chair in Chemical Engineering
1998 Joseph J. Melone, W'53, WG'54, GR'61/ Equitable Life Assurance WHA Dean's Discretion
1998 Miller Anderson & Sherrerd WHA Finance
1998 Estate of Olga Pompa SEAS Dean's Discretion
1998 Henry R. Silverman, L'64 LAW Corporate Law
1998 Joanne Thomson Welsh, CW'52 & Raymond H. Welsh, W'53 SSW Child Welfare
1999 Walter H. Annenberg, W'31, HON'66 & Leonore C. Annenberg, HON'85 SAS/ASC Political Science
1999 Joseph J. Aresty, W'43 WHA Leadership and Change
1999 Diver chair (multiple donors) LAW Dean's Discretion
1999 Robert A. Fox, C '52 SAS Leadership
1999 Robert A. Fox, C '52 SAS Leadership
1999 Goergen Foundation/Pamela T. Goergen & Robert B. Goergen, W'62 WHA Entrepreneurial Management
1999 Estate of Mary Groff MED Neurosurgery
1999 Korea Foundation SAS Korean Studies
1999 Measey Foundation MED Surgery
1999 Estate of Adele Neissen MED Opthamology
1999 Oxford Foundation / Marilyn Ware, CW'67 MED Alzheimer's
1999 Andrew S. Rachleff W'80 SEAS Young Faculty/Computer Science
1999 Joseph Sondheimer, NAF WHA International Economics & Finance
1999 Alberto Vitale, WG '59 WHA Electronic Commerce
2000 Christopher H. Browne, C'69 SAS Distinguished Professorship I-V
2000 Martin Bucksbaum Family WHA Real Estate Foundation
2000 Mark O. Winkelman, WG'73 WHA Distinguished Scholars
2001 Walter H. Annenberg, W'31, HON'66 & Leonore C. Annenberg, HON'85 ASC Director of Public Policy Center
2001 S. Samuel Arsht, L '34 LAW Corporate Law
2001 Oliver Boileau, EE'51, GEE'53 SEAS Electrical Engineering
2001 CIBC WHA e-Commerce and Entrepreneurship
2001 David B. Ford, WG'70 WHA TBD
2001 Estate of Georgia E Hofmann VET Equine Medicine
2001 Margaret R. Mainwaring, WD'47, H'85& A. Bruce Mainwaring, C'47 NUR Nightingale Professorship
2001 George A. Weiss W'56 SEAS Computer Science
2001 Michael D. Zisman, GEE'73, GR'77 and the Zisman Family Foundation SEAS Computer Science

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D. Continue working to attract and retain underrepresented minority and women faculty:

After a systematic review of the status of women faculty, the Gender Equity Study in 2000 showed increases of women in SAS, Wharton and Engineering, for instance, after 1995, but decreases or leveling off in 1997. The study showed no salary differences by gender. The Deans are attentive to the issues, and will continue to use Penn's competitive salaries to recruit and retain top female faculty.

Since 1995, grants from the Provost's Reinvestment Fund for minority faculty recruitment expanded dramatically from $132,960 in 1995 to $472,755 in 2000. In addition, in 1998 the fund began to be used to retain as well as recruit faculty.

While the increase in total numbers is small because of some important losses to other Universities and to retirement, African American standing faculty have increased from 52 in 1995 to 68 in 2001; Asian faculty have increased from 99 in 1995 to 181 in 2001; and Latino faculty from 30 in 1995 to 44 in 2001.

Two new programs launched as part of the Agenda for Excellence have also helped to enhance faculty minority initiatives. The first, the Diversity Fund, is a yearly initiative for the funding of research and programs focused on study of or enhancement of diversity on the campus. In 1999 this program provided grants totaling $208,000; in 2000, grants totaled $229,296. The second new initiative is the DuBois Collective, a program established by African American faculty across the campus to enhance research by providing pilot dollars to faculty and doctoral students; providing dollars for national and international symposia; and providing release time from teaching for junior faculty to begin their research programs. This initiative, headed by Dr. Margaret Spencer from the Graduate School of Education, was awarded initial multi-year University funding of $500,000.

II. Establish a rigorous, normative protocol for external review and assessment of each school and inter-school program every five to seven years.

"Normative" external reviews, not linked to accreditation nor signaling any concerns about the schools or centers, have been highly successful outcomes of the Agenda for Excellence process. These reviews have encouraged schools to reconsider and clarify various strategic goals, and they have been vital in measuring real progress toward these goals.

School and Center reviews began in February 1997, and have continued each semester since that time. The protocol for external review and assessment of the undergraduate, graduate and professional programs is as follows:

  • Self study done by the school.
  • A visit by selected distinguished external reviewers. Leaders from the highest ranked schools or relevant fields have participated in the reviews.
  • A written report by the reviewers to which the dean of the school is asked to respond.

External reviews to date include:

School of Nursing (1997);
School of Social Work (1997);
School of Dental Medicine (1997);
Graduate School of Education (1998);
School of Engineering and Applied Science (1998);
Law School (1998);
School of Veterinary Medicine (1999);
Wharton (2000);
Graduate School of Fine Arts (2000);
Annenberg (2001).

Reports from the external reviewers have provided important insights about the schools' faculty, students and academic programs, the appropriateness of their strategic plans, and the quality of their leadership.

III. Infuse the Research Foundation with new capital by raising money to support areas of research where Penn has clear competitive advantages or where the return on seed money is likely to be high.

Since the Research Foundation was reconstituted in 1986, its three sources of funding have been the endowment for the Research Foundation, income from patents and licenses, and an appropriation from the University operating budget.

Prior to the adoption of the Agenda for Excellence, no patent or royalty revenue had been posted to the fund in 7 years. Compare this to Fiscal 2000: endowment income had increased by 66% to $438,659, and technology transfer proceeds were over $7 million.

The infusion of the proceeds from the technology transfer program has completely changed the University Research Foundation's ability to respond to research initiatives. The decision to reinvest a large portion of those funds in the URF endowment fund has ensured the continued ability to increase the number and size of the awards. The reservation of some portion of technology transfer proceeds has created for the first time the ability to respond to special opportunities and challenges in research.

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IV. Directed by the Provost's Council of Deans, make strategic investments in current and developing cross-disciplinary fields where Penn has or could have nationally recognized strengths.

The University has made significant investments in strategic cross-disciplinary fields. Cross-school and interdisciplinary undergraduate programs were discussed earlier in this report.

V. Ensure that Penn's doctoral and professional programs will be the programs of choice. Take steps to:

  • Pursue increased funding for graduate education and training.

School of Arts and Sciences: The School has taken several steps to improve funding packages for graduate students, thereby improving its ability to attract the best students. SAS will provide four and five-year non-service packages at the level of its William Penn and Benjamin Franklin Fellowships (previously reserved for only a few top students) to all incoming students in the humanities and social sciences beginning in 2001-02.

All graduate students receiving full financial support will be provided with health insurance for a period of up to six years via the Penn Student Insurance Plan at no cost to them. In addition to the new health insurance benefit--estimated at a cash value of $1,400 per student --Ph.D. stipends will increase across the university. In 1999 SAS improved the value of its most elite fellowships, the Benjamin Franklin and William Penn. In 2000 the School raised the salary cap on graduate student earnings from University sources by 36% to ensure that students can devote their time fully to their studies without seeking outside employment.

Biomedical Graduate Studies has provided a full fellowship to every student in the program (except those who enter with a professional degree and are ineligible for predoctoral funding) through a combination of direct aid and appointments to training grants, individual fellowships, and -- beginning in year three--research grants for the duration of his or her enrollment as a full-time student in good standing.

Nursing School: The Nursing School now funds all full-time doctoral students and discourages part-time study for the Ph.D. in nursing. This year there are 13 School funded, 12 grant funded, and 3 fellowship funded Ph.D. students, all of whom are full-time. SON's Ph.D. applicant pool remains relatively stable and the School admits annually at capacity (about 12 students per year).

Graduate School of Fine Arts: The school reduced its admission of doctoral students to the number that can be supported fully on research and scholarship support. Three years of funding is offered to all students who are admitted.

Increasing the quantity and quality of graduate students is a very important goal of the School of Engineering and Applied Science. As part of this effort, the School has increased its commitment to recruiting, doubled its commitment to providing financial support to students, and started on new initiatives that have already yielded graduate fellowships in new research areas in SEAS.

School of Social Work: SSW now fully funds its PhD students. The funding comes primarily from research grants. We are now competitive with the top SSW doctoral programs in the US. However, more needs to be done in the future with respect to financial aid for MSW students.

  • Encourage innovative and efficient teaching and research groupings of faculty.

New and innovative groupings of faculty for teaching and research are being regularly established across the University.

Center for Children's Policy Practice and Research is a collaboration between the Law School, the School of Social Work and the School of Medicine. CCPPR seeks innovative solutions to the legal, societal, and health crises facing America's children. The Center will concentrate on interdisciplinary policy, research, practice and study among faculty and students in a number of schools and departments, centers and institutes. With its location in the Boston-Washington corridor and its commitment to leadership, Penn is in a unique position to create a national center that will change the direction of future policies for children.

The Cartographic Modeling Lab, a joint venture between the Graduate School of Fine Arts and the School of Social Work at the University of Pennsylvania, brings together faculty members and students across disciplines to collaborate on spatial research. The CML specializes in Geographic Information System (GIS) projects, with an emphasis on data integration, application development, and spatial analysis. Current projects span a wide variety of topics including public safety, social welfare, children and youth, housing, homelessness, the environment, public education, public health and political science.

Faculty from Engineering and the Wharton School are working together on multi-disciplinary research topics under the auspices of the Ackoff Center for Advanced Systems Approaches (A-CASA). The Center will examine the implications of netcentricity on a variety of topics including organizational design, and knowledge management and will examine several issues related to sustainability in both "new economy" and traditional organizations.

Five percent of faculty in Biomedical Graduate Studies now hold appointments in the Schools of Arts and Sciences, Dental Medicine, Engineering, and Veterinary Medicine or hold adjunct appointments in Penn departments as researchers at the Wistar Institute or the Institute for Cancer Research of the Fox Chase Cancer Center.

  • Strengthen efforts to attract and retain underrepresented minority and women graduate and professional students.

Efforts to attract women and minorities over the past five years have resulted in the following.

Graduate Students (1994-2000) Overall Enrollment (change %in enrollment) Women (%change of women) Underrepresented Minorities (change % of minorities)
Arts & Sciences -17% 4% 0%
Annenberg 39% 4% -9%
Education -28% 4% 1%
Engineering -25% 0% -3%
Fine Arts -52% 20% 0%
Medicine 3% 2% 1%
Nursing -20% 4% 10%
Social Work 81% 23% -2%
Wharton -3% 0% 0%

Professional Students (1994-2000) Overall Enrollment (change % in enrollment) Women (%change of women) Underrepresented Minorities (change % of minorities)
Annenberg -22% 25% -6%
Dental 9% 5% 4%
Education 0% -5% 0%
Engineering 80% 0% 0%
Fine Arts -24% 9% 0%
Law 2% 6% -1%
Medicine -3% 3% -7%
Nursing -44% -2% 0%
Social Work -22% 0% 8%
Veterinary 0% -2% 0%
Wharton 0% 2% 0%

Efforts are underway in all the Schools to improve these numbers. As one example of these efforts, Biomedical Graduate Studies program is working to strengthen the underrepresented minority applicant pool and encourage underrepresented minority students in general to consider careers in biomedical research, by training underrepresented minority undergraduates in its Summer Internships Program with a grant from the NIH and support from the Leadership Alliance (a consortium of 28 colleges and universities dedicated to increasing the numbers of underrepresented minority students in academic research).

  • Provide greater opportunities for student interaction across graduate and professional school boundaries, and enrich campus life for graduate and professional students.

The Veranda on Locust Walk will house the new Graduate Student Center, costing $1 million and providing a central site for Penn's graduate and professional students to socialize, study, create programming, and generally interact with one another across school boundaries. In addition to serving as a meeting place for graduate and professional students from across Penn, The Center will sponsor speaker series, research colloquia, and other programs to assist graduate and professional students in developing their careers.

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VI. Establish a review process for graduate and professional programs that emphasizes measures such as admission selectivity and ability to place graduates. Set program size accordingly.

The Graduate Council of the Faculties conducts regular reviews of all sixty Graduate Groups, on a five-year schedule. In the School of Arts and Sciences, for example, as part of its procedures for reviewing departments, the School conducts a rigorous three-part evaluation (self-study, internal and external reviews) of each department's Ph.D. program, following protocols established by the School and by University's Graduate Council of the Faculties. Graduate groups that are not coterminous with a department are reviewed in conjunction with an allied department (e.g., Demography with Sociology, Ancient History with Classical Studies). The School reviewed 16 of its 33 graduate groups in this manner from 1996 through 2000.

The Graduate School of Education implemented a cyclical curriculum review for each of its four academic divisions. Each calendar year, one of the four divisions now undergoes a comprehensive review of its curriculum and degree program offerings.

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 Six Academic Priorities

1.Life Science, Technology & Policy | 2.American & Comparative Democratic & Legal Institutions | 3.Management, Leadership & Organizations | 4.The Humanities -- Meaning in the 21st Century | 5.The Urban Agenda | 6.Information Science, Technology & Society

Six academic priorities were determined to be the most compelling and strategic for Penn as an institution over the next five years. Each of them is multidisciplinary and serves as a kind of crosswalk among different schools and departments. As these priorities reflect, Penn has a long been a campus that encourages interdisciplinary research and teaching. Each of the six priorities has received considerable attention and investment since 1995, although progress has not been uniform among the six priorities. Immediate opportunities were seized and developed in some, while efforts in others got off to a slower start.

Life Science, Technology and Policy

During the past five years the University has made significant progress in recruiting faculty, raising resources, and developing the organizational structures and physical facilities needed to facilitate work in the emerging areas of genomics, proteomics and bioinformatics, as well as new developments within the fields of genetics, cognitive neuroscience, germ cell biology and transgenesis, and translational biological and biomedical research. Penn now boasts a major research presence in all areas of contemporary biomedical science and is a world leader in many, as the following accomplishments will show.

Much of the University's growth in NIH funding, for example, was fostered by the creation of 18 interdisciplinary institutes and centers that facilitated interaction among faculty throughout the University, sponsoring seminars and supporting core facilities. These institutes have provided a critical mechanism for integrating life science research on campus.

New Academic Centers in Life Sciences

The Leonard and Madlyn Abramson Family Cancer Research Institute. Made possible by a $100 million gift from the Abramson family, the intent of the institute is to position itself in the vanguard of basic research into the causes of cancer and the development of the next generation of cancer treatments. The institute recently established a program in Cancer Genomics, a critical step for understanding the genetic basis of cancer development. One unique aspect of this component includes the collaboration with the Cancer Genetics Project at the Sanger Center.

The Center for Cognitive Neuroscience. Established upon the recommendation of a faculty planning committee appointed by the President to explore ways in which Penn could provide both a physical and intellectual focus for this emerging interdisciplinary field, this inter-school, interdepartmental center, aims to make Penn a national leader in the studies of mind, brain, and behavior. The center operates within the Mahoney Institute for Neurological Sciences in order to take advantage of the campus-wide neuroscience linkages, and also works closely with the Institute for Research in Cognitive Science.

Center for Animal Transgenesis and Germ Cell Research. Established to capitalize on more than 30 years of pioneering research in the development of transgenic techniques by scientists at the School of Veterinary Medicine, one of the major goals of the center is to develop new approaches for producing transgenic farm animals and understand germ cell biology.

The Department of Cancer Biology. Formation of this new basic science department complements existing departmental efforts in areas that overlap with cancer biology while providing a focused group of faculty interested in basic biological issues using cancer as a model system/core. Such a group of investigators and their associated laboratory, resources and teaching abilities provide a strong base for support, collaboration and advice to the broader membership of the Cancer Center as well as investigators in the basic science departments within both the Medical School and the Department of Biology.

Institute for Medicine and Engineering. Housed in the new Vagelos Building, the institute's mission is to stimulate fundamental research at the interface between biomedicine and the engineering/computation sciences that will lead to innovative applications in biomedical research and clinical practice. Research focuses on such areas as cardiovascular biology, engineering aspects of gene therapy, neuroengineering, and bioinformatics.

The Center for Bioinformatics. The center was created in 1997 to provide interdepartmental and interschool linkages between biomedical researchers in Arts and Sciences and Medicine, computer scientists in Engineering, and mathematicians in Arts and Sciences. The relatively recent emergence of bioinformatics and computational biology has been propelled by the explosion of new knowledge about the essential properties of life--as gleaned from the Human Genome Project and other similar efforts--along with rapid advances in computer technology.

Penn Center for Developmental Biology. Established in 1999 to promote interdisciplinary research in developmental biology, the center promotes research in the basic and medical sciences that will lead to novel, developmentally-based therapies for human research. Researchers in Medicine, Arts and Sciences and Veterinary Medicine work in such areas as cell biology, informatics and functional genomics, gene and cell and human genetics.

Genomics Institute. The establishment of a University-wide Genomics Institute will spearhead future development in this critical area, fostering interdisciplinary projects that integrate biology, medicine, engineering and computer science; and link academics and industry. The institute will provide intellectual leadership in studying genomes and undertake large-scale analysis of gene products.

Faculty from SEAS and SAS have established a Center for Nanoscale Science and Engineering. This center promotes interdisciplinary educational and research efforts across campus. The center will be the forum for writing group proposals, establishing an industrial liaison program, and for identifying outstanding candidates for faculty recruiting.

The Institute for Adolescent Risk Communication. The Institute, funded by a $25 million endowment from the Annenberg Foundation, will open in January 2002 and will focus on reducing adolescent smoking, illegal drug uses, gambling, risky sexual behavior, and suicide.

New Academic Programs in Life Sciences

Several new Masters Degrees in the Life Sciences have been developed: 

Degree Schools and Programs Involved
Master of Bioethics School of Arts and Sciences and the School of Medicine
Master's of Environmental Studies Departments of Biology, Earth and Environmental Science, and History and Sociology of Science
Master's Degree in Biotechnology School of Arts and Sciences, the School of Engineering and Applied Science and the School of Medicine
Masters Degree in Health Leadership Nursing/Wharton

New undergraduate majors include:

Major Schools and Programs Involved
Molecular Life Sciences Arts and Sciences, Medicine, Dental Medicine and Veterinary Medicine
Computer and Cognitive Science: Artificial Intelligence Institute for Research in Cognitive Science, the Department of Computer and Information Science in the School of Engineering and Applied Science and various departments in the School of Arts and Sciences
Digital Media Design School of Engineering and Applied Science and Arts and Sciences
Health and Societies School of Arts and Sciences
Computer and Telecommunications Nursing, School of Engineering, Engineering and Applied Science
Nursing and Health Care Management Nursing and Wharton

Several new minors in the life sciences have been established as well:

Minor Schools and Programs Involved
Health Care Systems and the Biological Basis of Behavior SAS and Wharton
Urban Health and Health Behavior Nursing
Cognitive Science Departments of Computer Science, Linguistics, Philosophy and Psychology
Nutrition Nursing and College of Arts and Sciences
Nursing and Health Services Management Nursing, Wharton, and School of Arts and Sciences
Health Communications Nursing and Annenberg School of Communications

In addition, the School of Medicine has implemented an innovative new curriculum--called "Curriculum 2000"--that is designed to meet the needs and realities of medical education in the 21st Century. The curriculum treats medical education as a continuum, integrating the basic sciences and clinical medicine, and preparing students for the self-directed, life-long learning that will be essential for future physicians.

New Academic Facilities in Life Sciences

In order to remain at the cutting edge, Penn's faculty must have flexible and modern research facilities. The University must create an environment that breaks down the real or psychological barriers of school-based spaces that can impede collaboration and result in duplicative efforts. Our new facilities must--and do--have an interdisciplinary focus, enabling researchers to work as teams.

Penn has undertaken a remarkable amount of biomedical construction over the past five years. Nowhere on campus have larger investments been made, as the following highlights make clear:

The Biological Research Building II/III. A 14-story, 384,000 net square foot state-of-the-art medical research facility that brings together some 800 researchers and support staff and a number of programs and departments that have programmatic affiliations. Including this new space, a total of 465,000 net square feet of new research space has been built over the past five years in the School of Medicine. Also during the past five years, the School of Medicine has renovated 395,000 square feet of existing research space, bringing them up to a standard that appropriately supports our current research mission.

Vagelos Laboratories of the Institute for Advanced Science and Technology. The Vagelos Laboratories provide Penn with 102,000 square feet of new, critically-needed space for cutting-edge research in bioengineering, chemistry, chemical engineering and medicine. Completed in 1997, they are designed to facilitate research that integrates engineering approaches to cell and molecular biology/biochemistry and include core facilities for tissue culture, molecular biology, radioisotopes and optical imaging.

The Margaret McGrath Rockefeller Laboratory in Animal Reproduction and The Marion Dilley and David George Jones Laboratory in Animal Reproduction. These two laboratories, part of the Veterinary School's Center for Animal Transgenesis and Germ Cell Research, were constructed at a cost of $4.2 million. The Rockefeller Laboratory concentrates on germ cell biology and animal transgenesis, while the Jones Laboratory focuses on the basic science aspects of germ cell research.

The Cell Engineering Laboratories. This multi-million renovation supports teaching and research initiatives across the Department of Bioengineering and the School of Medicine.

Leidy and Goddard Laboratories and the Mudd Building. Renovations in these three Biology buildings improved common research facilities for cell and molecular biologists and ecology/evolutionary biologists, helping to advance work in the life sciences.

Life Sciences Building. Plans are moving ahead for the construction of a new research hub that is to be built in two phases, providing more than 125,000 square feet for the Biology and Psychology Departments, the new Genomics Institute, and research space and advanced technology supporting core components in genomics, proteomics, and cognitive neuroscience. It is important to note, though, that Penn has faced difficulty in raising the capital funding necessary to meet the expanding and rapidly changing needs for life science research facilities.

Melvin J. and Claire Levine Hall. The School of Engineering has begun construction of a $20 million facility that is intended to house the Department of Computer and Information Sciences, an essential partner for work in genomics.

Bioengineering Building. Engineering also is beginning a fund-raising effort to develop and construct a new Bioengineering Building.

Blockley Hall. Recent and planned renovations of Blockley Hall will provide 12,000 square feet of dry lab space for research in bioinformatics.

Mouse Genomics Imaging Laboratory. Planning has been initiated for a Mouse Genomics Imaging Laboratory that will provide key infrastructure for future research related to imaging instrument development, molecular imaging, genomics, and bioinformatics.

The life sciences clearly must remain a strategic priority for the University. With the recent completion of the human genome project, we have entered a new frontier in biological research. It is clear that the explosion of information emerging from large-scale approaches to complex biological systems will revolutionize life sciences research over the next few decades.

American and Comparative Democratic and Legal Institutions

The ACDLI initiative has attracted valuable new talent and introduced important program innovations that have helped to increase Penn's strength in this area.

In particular, Penn has added outstanding new faculty:

  • John DiIulio (Political Science) was recruited from Princeton to become the Frederick Fox Leadership Professor of Politics, Religion and Civil Society. He is a major scholar of U.S. politics, criminology, public policy and management, and faith-based social programs in American government, and is a "public intellectual" whose essays frequently appear in popular journals and newspapers. He was asked by President Bush to direct the new White House Office of Faith-Based and Community Initiatives.
  • Renowned Yale Professor Rogers Smith, who specializes in constitutional law and American political thought, will become the Christopher Browne Professor of Political Science this year. A younger political scientist, Mary Summers, will also leave Yale to become a senior lecturer in Penn's Fox Leadership Program.
  • Jerome Maddox (Political Science) was recruited from Stanford and has established himself as a leading young scholar of federalism and the dynamics of federal assistance to state programs.
  • Antonio Merlo, the Lawrence R. Klein Associate Professor of Economics is an outstanding economist/political scientist, attracted from NYU to head the Institute for Economic Research. He has created an important new interschool seminar series in political theory and rational action.
  • Larry Sherman (Sociology), the Albert Greenfield Professor of Human Relations is one of world's leading criminologists. He was recruited from the University of Maryland to revitalize the Fels Center of Government with a focus on state and local institutions.

The pace of advance in the Political Science department has been slower than hoped, but the appointments above are very significant accomplishments. The department remains weaker than it needs to be in American politics and still too small, but its expansion is ongoing and there are some promising prospects currently being actively recruited.

On a different front, the Law School has successfully hired six new faculty members, a rate of successful recruitment that is unprecedented in recent history. Although these new faculty are not all constitutionalists, there is increasing interest within the School's faculty in scholarship in these and other ACDLI-related areas: constitutional law; law and technology; law and medicine; law and communications; and corporate law. Faculty with particular interests on these areas include:

  • Kim Scheppele--recruited from the Political Science department at Michigan and a leading figure in comparative constitutional law, law and society, and political theory.
  • Edward Rubin--recruited from the University of California at Berkeley and an internationally recognized expert on the law and politics of prison reform and administrative agency performance.

The Law School is actively searching for a major scholar who would link the School directly with the National Constitution Center, and be a bridge for fellows from the Center who will be housed at the Law School.

Other new programs at Penn have also added to ACDLI success:

Undergraduate Programs: The College program in Philosophy, Politics, and Economics (PPE), with its ACDLI-related focus, has become a very popular major that successfully integrates faculty from the Law School with faculty in three SAS departments. The College and Wharton also have established interschool minors in American Public Policy and Legal Studies and History.

Annenberg Public Policy Center: The Annenberg Public Policy Center was established by Walter Annenberg in 1994 to create a community of scholars within the University of Pennsylvania that would address public policy issues at the local, state and national levels. The Center focuses on Information and Society, Media and the Developing Mind, Media and the Dialogue of Democracy, and Health Communication.

National Constitution Center: The University is the Center's academic partner: faculty from History and Law have played a central role in shaping the Center's scholarly mission. The local presence of the Center has inspired several related projects at Penn: the McNeil Center for Early American Studies will award a biennial dissertation fellowship in constitutional history and the Penn Press will launch an important book series devoted to issues of constitutionalism.

Fels Center of Government: While not a new program, the Fels Center has been transferred into the School of Arts and Sciences and revitalized under the leadership of Larry Sherman, who has reenergized the Center's research mission, public outreach, and Master of Governmental Administration degree program.

Law School: Academic program developments in the Law School have also been positive. On the international front, the graduate law (LLM) program, which is filled principally with students from abroad, has expanded, international offerings have increased, and a solid connection has been made with the National Constitution Center. On the domestic side, the Law School greatly expanded the Institute for Law and Economics; created a joint degree program in Law and History; and established sub-matriculation programs with the undergraduate schools.

The analysis of American institutions should be a center of strength at the oldest American university in the city where American democracy was created. Penn has great strength in History, Economics and Wharton, and continuing weakness in Political Science. The Law School is highly regarded, but increasing strategic focus and a real growth in resources will be needed for it to fully realize its truly exciting potential.

There are unique advantages in public visibility to a University that is strong in law and politics. These areas have traditionally captured the public imagination like few other topics. The recent electoral events in Florida are just the latest example. A university with powerful programs in political science and law will necessarily be prominent on the public stage, and Penn should stay the course in ACDLI.

Management, Leadership and Organizations

The Wharton School. Wharton has a core mission that reflects the central principles outlined in this priority. All the School's research and teaching programs focus on responding, anticipating, and creating the changes that will drive management practice in broad categories of enterprises. Over the past five years, Wharton has instituted a number of new programs throughout the School and in partnership with colleagues throughout Penn that continue and reflect this commitment.

For example, Wharton has developed new degree concentrations: MBA concentration in technological innovation; MBA and undergraduate concentrations in e-commerce; undergraduate concentrations in communications and global analysis; and an interdisciplinary doctoral degree in Global Manufacturing Logistics in partnership with Lehigh University and sponsored by the National Science Foundation. It has also added new research and academic programs.

Wharton has begun distance and technology-enhanced learning initiatives such as Wharton Direct, Wharton-INSEAD CyberExchange, and the formation of learning lab for creation of technology-enhanced learning tools and new learning formats for traditional degree and executive program course material.

In addition to these intramural initiatives, Wharton has worked with its colleagues across the campus to develop new programming and expanded opportunities with inter-school and interdisciplinary focus: Undergraduate Program in Nursing & Health Care Management (N&HCM); Undergraduate University minors in actuarial mathematics, American public policy, biological basis of behavior and health services management, legal studies and history, nursing and health services management, organizations and environmental management, and urban real estate and development; and Executive Master's in Technology Management Program (EMTM) in partnership with the School of Engineering and Science; and Technological Innovation (MBA/MSE).

Wharton also offers dual degree programs with other schools:

Partner with Wharton Degree offered
School of Law JD/MBA
Communication MBA/MA
Social Work MBA/MSW
Medicine MD/MBA
Dental MBA/DMD
Veterinary MBA/VMD
Nursing MBA/MSN

School of Arts and Sciences. Leadership training is underway in SAS's Fox Leadership Program, established in 1998 with a generous gift by Trustee Robert Fox. Under the Fox Leadership Program , leaders from business, politics, academia, the arts and public service meet with small groups of College students in a series of structured and highly interactive programs throughout the academic year; freshmen in the College participate in a leadership program shortly after their arrival; curricular innovations have been included to enhance students' speaking skills; students have greater opportunities to practice leadership by participating in curricular and extracurricular activities in the community and have a chance to serve as mentors, trainers and leadership volunteers throughout their undergraduate years; and a public lecture by a world leader from politics or a variety of professions will be held each year.

Nursing. The rapid transformation of health care delivery and financing has created unprecedented leadership opportunities for nurses to influence the future direction of health care. In response to these emerging needs, the School has developed a masters program in Health Leadership. Graduates of this program will play a part in designing and delivering health care in communities, in national and international arenas, and within government, hospitals, health care systems, and related businesses.

Graduate School of Education. GSE has received a planning grant from the Carnegie Corporation to create a Center for Education Leadership. The center will subsume the school's professional development and outreach programs to Philadelphia schools, and expand GSE's technical assistance capacity. The center will be located in the professional development wing at the University-assisted PreK-8 school. Also, GSE has launched a new "Executive Program" in Higher Education Management: the program allows a select cohort of executives and senior managers to attain the Penn Ed.D. in two years, without interruption to their careers. The curriculum centers on the core management competencies and applied research skills that leaders at the most senior levels require.

The School of Social Work. To prepare graduates for practice in the 21st Century, new models of intervention are being generated to deliver the most effective and efficient practices at individual, family, community, organizational, and societal levels. Knowledge about the techniques of management and the disciplines of economics, law, politics, individual and group behavior, and social policy will form the foundation for direct and community practice alike. As social work is a multi-disciplinary profession, students at the School are encouraged to structure their professional education across related disciplines in the University.

One of the goals of this priority has been to leverage Wharton's strengths and enhance the level of "management education" in other schools. The joint programs that have been listed help do this, but more needs to be done to help prepare Penn graduates in a variety of disciplines for management challenges they will face in the future.

The Humanities -- Meaning in the 21st Century

The humanities at Penn rank in the top ten among research universities in the United States. The criteria substantiating this ranking include the high visibility and productivity of Penn's humanities faculty in their separate fields, the increasing quality of graduate students attracted to Penn, and the distinctive profile of Penn humanities resources. The rich resources of the library system in the humanities are well known. Further, unlike many other of our peer schools, Penn humanities programs draw on the strengths of our regional cultural and historical institutions and libraries, as well as Philadelphia's vital urban culture. Many scholars are attracted to Penn because of these resources: and our faculty makes extensive use of them. Penn humanities have a distinctive profile: Penn is an institution supporting the best kind of public humanities work - humanities teaching and programs that are rooted in the most rigorous scholarship but also accessible and engaged with the world around us.

Research and teaching in the humanities have advanced significantly since this area was identified as an institutional priority. Highlights follow:

  • The Penn Humanities Forum was launched in 1999 to foster collaboration across the School's humanities departments, to explore connections among the humanities, social sciences, natural sciences, and Penn's professional schools, and to create links between Penn humanists and the Philadelphia community.
  • In 1999 SAS received one of two planning grants in the Mid-Atlantic region for a proposal to establish Penn as one of ten National Endowment for the Humanities Regional Humanities Centers being created across the country. The proposal will be submitted in the summer of 2001 and, along with the Humanities Forum, will mark Penn as a leader in innovative interdisciplinary programs and public humanities work.
  • A Center for Ancient Studies was established in 1996 to unify Penn's resources for the study of the ancient world.
  • In 1998 SAS launched a program in Film Studies. It is currently searching for the first occupant of the Jaffe Chair in Film Studies in the department of History of Art; it is collaborating with the School of Fine Arts and the Annenberg Center in constructing new facilities for teaching film; it has instituted a film minor and a new undergraduate advisory board for Film Studies.
  • Humanities faculty have participated in new academically-based community service courses in West Philadelphia schools, including courses on Plato's Republic and on the Theatre Arts.
  • In 1998 SAS appointed a Language and Literature Task Force, which reviewed the School's policies and structures for the teaching of language and literature. Many of the Task Force's recommendations have been implemented, including the institution of a new Language Certificate, which offers an incentive to students for further language study; the creation of a Language Advisory group and a language web page; the development of new language/culture courses; and the overhaul of the language teaching programs in Romance Languages and German.
  • SAS also oversaw significant advances in the application of new technologies to humanities teaching and research: professors in Classical Studies and English received major NEH grants for teaching with technology and SAS funded innovative programs in teaching Music theory with computer.
  • The Kelly Writers House was founded as a "hub" for writing at the University; it has been a leader in creating a community of writers at Penn, and in bringing about new advances in the electronic dissemination of humanities programming.
  • The Provost's Council on Arts and Culture was established in the fall of 1999 for the purpose of promoting artistic and cultural endeavors at Penn. The Council is comprised of the directors of all of Penn's major arts and culture venues. Its goal is to design and execute new cooperative initiatives which build on the centers' various strengths and provide mutual benefits. Current objectives include raising student awareness of the arts and culture opportunities available to them at the University and developing new audiences from throughout the Delaware Valley.

Finding resources for the humanities can be difficult. The first stage of the Penn Humanities Forum has been funded through a combination of endowment funds from the Mellon Foundation, gift funds raised by the School of Arts and Sciences, and the SAS operating budget. For the Forum to proceed to the next stage, in which visiting fellows and scholars will broaden and deepen its work, more funds will need to be raised.

The humanities have gained a new momentum at Penn. The humanities have emerged from the crisis of the "culture wars" into a new era of energy and commitment. The study of the humanities has always been the backbone of a liberal arts education, and after a decline in student interest in late eighties and the early nineties, commitment to the humanities is surging, because of new programs and new emphases that speak more immediately to student concerns. The humanities at Penn not only continue to show strength in traditional areas, such as ancient studies, but they have also established leadership in new fields of inquiry as a result of strategic attention.

The Urban Agenda

The Urban Agenda continues to be of central importance to several Schools within the University. A number of advances have been made, but Penn still lacks an organizing principle that would maximize the sum of the parts in this case. We have not yet found an effective way to leverage resources across the University to be seen as the preeminent place for urban research and scholarship. Nor have we adequately opened the doors for undergraduates interested in urban studies to benefit from the richness of opportunities across all twelve schools.

Under the leadership of GSE Dean Susan Fuhrman and in collaboration with Dr. Larry Sherman of the Fels Center, an Urban Agenda Committee was formed and has developed plans for integrating the study of cities and metropolitan regions more fully into the academic life of the University. The Committee has recommended the development of a University-spanning Urban Institute at Penn-which will be governed jointly by SAS, GSE, SSW, GSFA and Wharton.

Advances continuing within individual Schools include:

The Graduate School of Education. Urban education is one of two school-wide emphases. Professional development programs, such as the Philadelphia Writing Project, the Penn Literacy Network and the Penn-Merck Science Education Project, offer summer institutes and year-round support to thousands of local schoolteachers, and The Consortium for Policy Research in Education has conducted the evaluation of Philadelphia's education reform efforts.

GSE has increased the extent to which urban affairs are addressed across disciplines through a Spencer Foundation Research Training Grant. Activities include an annual cross-University student research symposium on urban themes and a monthly Urban Education Research Seminar. GSE is also planning a grant proposal for an Advanced Studies Group that would provide opportunities for research centers to coalesce around urban themes and sponsor post-docs in urban education.

GSE's teacher education program has made an explicit commitment to preparing teachers in urban settings. A result is that over 50 GSE student teachers are working in West Philadelphia's elementary and high schools. The neighborhood preK-8 demonstration school will be instrumental in GSE's continuing efforts to locate teaching, research and service activities in our West Philadelphia community.

The School of Nursing. In the realm of applied practice, faculty from the school are heavily involved in providing health services to under-served populations in Southwest Philadelphia, giving urban practice opportunities to many students.

In the realm of research, Nursing faculty have been actively involved in relevant projects, as the accompanying box demonstrates.

Nursing Research Programs in the Urban Agenda
Dr. Loretta Sweet Jemmott Mother Son HIV Risk Reduction Intervention Project.
Dr. Antonia Villarruel "Latino Youth Health Promotion Project
Dr. Loretta Jemmott and NIMH Phase IV HIV Prevention Clinical
Dr. John Jemmott Trial
Dr. Ann O'Sullivan Pregnant adolescents in West Philadelphia
Dr. Frieda Outlaw, Dr. Margaret Cotroneo, and Dr. Lenore Kurlowicz An innovative contextual intervention to treat depression among low-income child-bearing African American women"

Nursing undergraduates participate actively in urban clinical settings. The focus is neighborhood assessment using observational survey techniques, available databases, interviews, and interactions with community members. The goal is to identify two or three priority health problems, design an intervention, and carry it out. And, at the graduate level, community projects in a core course, "Concepts in Primary Care," involve more than fifty students annually.

In addition, the School's Penn Nursing Network, a multi-practice health care delivery network spanning the life cycle, opened in 1995. This network provides community-based, family-focused, and cost-effective quality healthcare services while fully integrating practice, education, and research. The Health Annex at the Francis J. Myers Recreation Center is a unique cooperative effort between the School of Nursing and the City of Philadelphia Departments of Recreation and Health. The practice promotes health and wellness, identifies illness needs, and delivers primary health care across the life span. The Living Independently for Elders (LIFE) Program is a risk-based program providing integrated acute and long-term care services for the frail elderly.

School of Social Work. SSW is involved in a number of Urban Agenda Initiatives. Dr. Mark Stern is involved in researching the social impact of the arts. Dr. Stern's work is funded by the PEW and William Penn foundations. A national evaluation of welfare to work projects is being spearheaded by Dr. Roberta Iversen. Her work is funded by the Annie E. Casey Foundation. Dr. Ram Cnaan was the principal investigator of a study of 2000 religious congregations in Philadelphia that examined their involvement in delivering social welfare services. The study, which was funded by the Lilly Endowment, was the first study of its kind and is now being replicated in other jurisdictions by other scholars interested in this important contemporary issue. Drs. Richard Gelles and Carol Wilson-Spigner are leading a study of the impact of transferring the child protective service investigative function from the state public child welfare agency in Florida to law enforcement. Dr. Larry Icard is leading a large NIMH funded project designed to test the impact of family centered interventions as a strategy to prevent HIV/AIDS in large urban areas. Dr. Dennis Culhane is involved in the application of geographic information technology to social welfare planning and policy development in Philadelphia and in 26 other urban areas throughout the country.

The Graduate School of Fine Arts. GSFA has made good progress in focusing on urbanism in Philadelphia and beyond. Our city and regional planning program has increased its profile, and is attracting a large number of students. GSFA has recruited three outstanding new faculty to join the planning program: Eugenie Birch, a specialist on inner city change who is the new department chair; Jonathan Barnett, an urban designer; and Sidney Wong, an expert on inner city economic development.

The reinstituted urban design certificate program is one of the three areas where GSFA offers a post-professional masters program in architecture.

In 1999, GSFA began using the Albert Grosser endowment to seed research projects across the school. The intention is to solicit research proposals each year, with a preference for those that can show early results and attract additional outside funding. The grants have funded studies of inner city housing developments, viewsheds from open spaces, the future of urban park planning, and the evolution of the urban form of Philadelphia.

School of Arts and Sciences: Highlights related to the Urban Agenda include:

  • The Fels Center of Government, with a focus on municipal and state government, has been revitalized since its transfer into SAS in 1999 and the hiring of a new director, Larry Sherman
  • The Center for Research on Religion and Urban Civil Society (CRRUCS) was established in 2000. Directed by Professor John DiIulio, it is dedicated to the empirical study of faith-based institutions in American cities
  • The Jerry Lee Center for Criminology was established in 2000
  • The dormant Graduate Group in Criminology was reformed and transferred to SAS from Wharton in 2000. It will be led by Larry Sherman, one of the leading criminologists in the world, and will involve faculty from six schools
  • Undergraduate minors have been developed in Urban Education (with the Graduate School of Education) and Urban Real Estate and Development (with Wharton)

A continued academic emphasis on urban affairs can only benefit the University. As one illustration of this point, the University as a whole has invested many millions in the transformation of West Philadelphia, and all visible signs suggest that we have accelerated change in the area, and pointed it in the right direction. In addition, Penn's recently completed master planning efforts laid the ground for a physical expansion to the East that reconnects Penn's campus to Center City, thus further integrating Penn's physical setting with its urban context. Scholars will be encouraged to evaluate whether individual programs have succeeded and, if so, on what terms.

Information Science, Technology and Society

The School of Engineering and Applied Science. At the center of this priority is SEAS, which is exploring how the computer can be used to understand language and the workings of the mind, and to understand how we can use new information technologies to foster learning and redefine the ways in which universities will serve society in the coming decades.

Technology is taking the forefront in all facets of engineering and is the mainstay of our global society. With the site work begun on the new Levine Hall and the hire of the CIS Chair, SEAS is making strides in both physical and intellectual growth. The building will provide state-of-the-art facilities for teaching and research and the intellectual capabilities of scholars. The appointment of Dr. Fernando Pereira, recruited from Bell Laboratories, as CIS Chair brings a scholar of international renown who is a researcher in computational linguistics and artificial intelligence with particular focus on machine learning techniques in language and speech recognition. His priorities will include keeping undergraduate education abreast of rapid changes in technology and society; maintaining a strong, bold research program; and further developing links with other academic departments in the sciences and humanities.

SEAS has expanded technology facilities by designing a flexible, high-tech classroom for digital videotaping and videoconferencing containing 20 laptop computers for participant interaction. This classroom provides distance-learning opportunities such as the current collaborationbetween SEAS and Lehigh University using joint classroom lectures. SEAS is anticipating a pilot distance-learning program with Edinburgh University.

The new Engineering Entrepreneurship Program in SEAS has proven a success as it presents real-world case studies and prominent guest speakers to impart skills on how to bring high-tech ideas to practice in society. Experienced faculty designed a curriculum aimed at instilling in the students a passion for technological innovation.

CSE 100, Computer Science and Engineering, was developed to serve the needs of non-SEAS students across the University. The course's primary goals are to investigate the current and future political and economic impact of information technology on individuals and on individuals as members of society. The course demystifies information technology and prepares students for further self study. There is a strong demand for this type of course, and additional courses are being designed to meet the needs of the University community.

SEAS is cognizant of the importance of bringing technology to society at large and has incorporated this focus into community service projects. Opportunities abound for students to engage in technology-based community service projects both locally and globally. Locally, students serve as teaching aides and mentors in computer, math, science, and engineering classrooms in West Philadelphia's public schools and community centers. Globally, teams of our students are going to places like Quito (Equador), Pune (India) and Bamako (Mali) to serve needy communities through technology.

The School of Arts and Sciences. Complementing activity in SEAS, the School of Arts and Sciences is also directly engaged in this priority:

  • It has taken an active role in the establishment of a Center for Cognitive Neuroscience and in the recruitment of faculty in this area.
  • Together with SEAS, SAS is currently in the process of appointing new leadership for the Institute for Research in Cognitive Science in an effort to ensure the continued success of this distinguished entity.
  • SAS has also added new undergraduate programs in biology, new concentrations in computational biology and mathematical biology, a new major in Cognitive Science, and the College is considering the creation of a certificate program in information technology.

Information science and technology, more now than five years ago, continues to play the most significant role in transforming the world. Investing in technology and technology-based programs must continue to be a top priority.

1.Life Science, Technology & Policy | 2.American & Comparative Democratic & Legal Institutions | 3.Management, Leadership & Organizations | 4.The Humanities -- Meaning in the 21st Century | 5.The Urban Agenda | 6.Information Science, Technology & Society

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No. 32, SUPPLEMENT: Agenda for Excellence 1995-2000 (~ 375 k; 32 pages)

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Almanac, Vol. 47, No. 32, May 1, 2001