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COUNCIL: State of the University

October 26, 2010, Volume 57, No. 09

President Amy Gutmann

This past weekend, we had the privilege of hosting Family Weekend. Although we come from all over the global community, the Penn family shares one thing—an extraordinary spirit.  It’s a spirit that’s enabling us to become more intellectually daring…more socially transformative…and more physically vibrant than ever before imagined.

The Penn spirit is evident in the development and expansion of our campus—guided by the Penn Connects campus development plan, with its vision of linking the University to the City and the City to the University. 

Among recently completed—and exciting—new additions is the George A. Weiss Pavilion, with its state-of-the-art Robert A. Fox Fitness Center. Already buzzing with activity, it’s also receiving rave reviews.

And the new Morris Arboretum Horticultural Center—dedicated on October 5th—is on track to receive LEED Platinum Certification. The Arboretum also just received a Pennsylvania AIA Architectural Excellence Award, at the Highest “Gold” Honors level, for its “Out on a Limb” exhibit.

Last month, we announced the acquisition of the DuPont Marshall Lab 23 acre campus at 34th Street and Grays Ferry Avenue. 

But I don’t want to steal the thunder of Anne Papageorge’s Penn Connects Report, so let me turn the microphone over to her.

I’m pleased to report the tremendous success of our Making History Campaign.  With two years left, we’ve raised slightly over $2.85 billion—or 81% of our $3.5 billion dollar goal.  We were able to do this even during a time of significant economic challenge and change, and that’s due to the hard work of our entire community—and especially our extraordinary Office of Development and Alumni Affairs, under the leadership of Vice President John Zeller, and our Provost, Deans, and Department Chairs.

The number one priority of the Campaign is student financial aid.  We’ve kept our promise to increase access and make a Penn education affordable for every undergraduate we admit—increasing the average aid per student almost 29% from Fiscal Year 2009 to Fiscal Year 2011.  Thanks to the remarkable support for our Campaign—and our prudent financial management—we’ll continue to keep the promise.  

Recruiting and retaining the best faculty is an equally important priority. We’ve already brought ten PIK Professors to campus—and the Campaign will allow us to recruit even more of the finest faculty.

To give us much more information on our Campaign, I’ll now turn the microphone over to John Zeller, Vice President for Development and Alumni Relations.






Almanac - October 26, 2010, Volume 57, No. 09