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Invitation from President Gutmann to the Inaugural Symposium    

Rising to the Challenges of a Diverse Democracy

Dear Colleagues:

The academic year is off to an exceptionally upbeat and enthusiastic beginning, and I want to thank each and every one of you who have made me feel so very welcome and at home here at Penn.

I hope you will join me in looking ahead a few weeks to the Inaugural Celebration on Friday, October 15th.  While the Inauguration formally marks my investiture as Penn's eighth President, it is also a chance for all of us to celebrate and reflect upon Penn's achievements, identity, and future.

To further that reflection and begin a process of shared deliberation about Penn's future in a world divided by race, class, nationality, ethnicity, ideology, economic status—and especially, access to education—I have organized an Inaugural Symposium that I hope will give faculty, students, staff, alumni, and Trustees the opportunity to explore together the role of the modern university in strengthening democracy in our diverse global community. 

Rising to the Challenges of a Diverse Democracy reflects my belief that higher education and the public deliberation to which it is necessarily committed must play central roles in realizing the core values of democratic societies: life, liberty, opportunity, and mutual respect. Five interdisciplinary panels, largely composed of our own colleagues from among the Penn faculty, will bring a wide range of experience and expertise to bear on these questions that are central to understanding the role of higher education—and the University of Pennsylvania—in our world.

As we rededicate ourselves to the mission of service to humanity bequeathed to us by Penn's founder, Benjamin Franklin, I hope each of you will join with me and our great University community in exploring together the many ways in which Penn can advance these core democratic values in the 21st century.

Please encourage your colleagues and students to attend and participate, as we celebrate Penn and our extraordinary capacity to rise to the challenges that lie ahead.

Amy Gutmann


The Inaugural Symposium: Friday, October 15, 2004

Advance Registration and Additional Information:

We encourage you to register in advance for the Inaugural Symposium's panel sessions at the University's Inauguration website: www.upenn.edu/inauguration, where you also will find additional information on the panels, participants, and other Inaugural events. Please note that locations may change and check the website for updated information closer to the event, as well as schedules available on campus during the Inauguration events.

Except as otherwise noted, all panelists are members of the University of Pennsylvania faculty.

SESSION I: Concurrent Sessions, 1:30-3 p.m.

Creating and Communicating Knowledge in an Unequal World

How, in an era of staggering complexity and instant global communication, can the flow of new knowledge and information among widely disparate populations strengthen democracy, enhance individual lives, and promote mutual respect and understanding?

Panel Chair: Andrea Mitchell,Chief Foreign Affairs Correspondent, NBC News


  • Elijah Anderson, Department of Sociology, SAS
  • John J. DiIulio, Jr.,Department of Political Science, SAS   
  • Kathleen Hall Jamieson, Annenberg School for Communication
  • Fernando Pereira,Department of Computer and Information Science, School of Engineering and Applied Science

Location:Huntsman Auditorium, Jon M. Huntsman Hall

Improving Lives by Investing in Science and Medicine

How can universities like Penn ensure that science and medicine sustain lives and improve the quality of life for all, in a world that is at once desperately in need of their intervention yet also often threatened by their impact?

Panel Chair:Barbara L. Weber, Abramson Cancer Center, School of Medicine


  • Arthur L. Caplan, Center for Bioethics, School of Medicine
  • Michael L. Klein,Department of Chemistry, SAS
  • Mary D. Naylor, Hartford Center of Geriatric Nursing Excellence, School of Nursing
  • David S. Roos, Department of Biology, SAS
  • Ralph L. Brinster, Department of Animal Biology, School of Veterinary Medicine

Location: Wu & Chen Auditorium, Levine Hall

SESSION II: Concurrent Sessions,   3:15-4:45 p.m.

Educating Professionals as Engaged Citizens

How should educators of future professionals—in business, law, social work, health care, education, engineering, communications, design, and in the arts and sciences—prepare their students to meet the challenges of democratic leadership and contribute to social justice in our ever more diverse society?

Panel Chair: Sarah Barringer Gordon, Law School


  • Thomas Donaldson, Department of Legal Studies, Wharton School
  • Sarah H. Kagan, Hartford Center of Geriatric Nursing Excellence, School of Nursing
  • Laurie D. Olin, Department of Landscape Architecture, School of Design
  • Dennis Thompson, Center for Ethics and the Professions, Harvard University

Location:Room 17, Logan Hall

Leading and Learning from Local and Global Communities

How do modern research universities like Penn productively collaborate with and learn from—as well as lead—the many different communities in which they operate, ranging from the local to the global?

Panel Chair: Jon M. Huntsman, Chair, Huntsman Corporation


  • Judith Buchanan,Department of Community Oral Health, School of Dental Medicine
  • Michael Useem, Department of Management, Wharton School
  • Dennis Culhane, School of Social Work
  • Margaret Beale Spencer, Graduate School of Education

Location:Colloquium Hall, Jon M. Huntsman Hall

Making the Most of Our Cultural Differences

How does diversity—of peoples, values, ideas, and experiences—enhance the educational and research capacities of universities and become an invaluable resource for democratic societies facing the challenges of an increasingly demanding, dangerous, and unpredictable world?

Panel Chair: Henry Louis Gates, Jr., Department of African and African American Studies, Harvard University


  • K. Anthony Appiah, Department of Philosophy, Princeton University
  • Howard F. Chang, Law School
  • Ania Loomba, Department of English, School of Arts and Sciences
  • Barbara Savage,Department of History, School of Arts and Sciences

Location:Room 200, College Hall

Closing Reception,5-6 p.m.

Location:  East Hall, Eighth Floor, Jon M. Huntsman Hall



  Almanac, Vol. 51, No. 4, September 21, 2004


September 21, 2004
Volume 51 Number 4


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