News

Weitzman School of Design’s Three Endowed Professorships

  • September 17, 2019
  • vol 66 issue 5
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caption: Lisa Servoncaption: Ken Lumcaption: Sean BurkholderThe University of Pennsylvania Stuart Weitzman Scho​ol of Design recently announced that three members of the standing faculty have been awarded endowed professorships: Lisa Servon, Kevin and Erica Penn Presidential Professor; Ken Lum, Marilyn Jordan Taylor Presidential Professor; and Sean Burkholder, Andrew Gordon Assistant Professor.

Dr. Servon, professor and chair of city and regional planning, is the inaugural endowed Kevin and Erica Penn Presidential Professor. Dr. Servon conducts research in the areas of urban poverty, community development, economic development, and issues of gender and race. Specific areas of her expertise include economic insecurity, consumer financial services and financial justice. She is the author of Bridging the Digital Divide: Technology, Community, and Public Policy (Wiley, 2002), Bootstrap Capital: Microenterprises and the American Poor (Brookings Institution, 1999), Gender and Planning: A Reader (Rutgers, 2005) and The Unbanking of America: How the New Middle Class Survives (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2017). Dr. Servon has contributed to The New Yorker, The Atlantic and The Wall Street Journal.

Ken Lum, professor and chair of fine arts, is the inaugural endowed Marilyn Jordan Taylor Presidential Professor. Mr. Lum is internationally known for his conceptual and representational art in a variety of media. His installations often deal with individual and social identity formation in the context of historical trauma and the complications of official and non-official memory. He is co-curator of Monument Lab: A Public Art and History Project, which began as a city-wide art public art exhibition in Philadelphia and has become a referent for other cities in dealing with the problems of controversial monuments and statues. This project led to a book edited with Paul M. Farber entitled Monument Lab: Creative Speculations for Philadelphia (Temple University Press, 2019).

Sean Burkholder, assistant professor of landscape architecture, is the inaugural endowed Andrew Gordon Assistant Professor. Mr. Burkholder’s research considers the way ecology influences the urban landscape. His work has largely focused on the Great Lakes region in collaboration with the Ohio EPA and the US Army Corps of Engineers. He co-directs the Healthy Port Futures project, which stresses the inherent value of landscape design research in the process of maritime infrastructure projects. Mr. Burkholder also serves as a design critic internationally and his work has been published widely in books and journals.

Penn Engineering’s Four New Scholarly Chairs

  • September 17, 2019
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caption: Danielle Bassettcaption: Russell Compostocaption: Boon Thau Loocaption: Mark Yim

Penn Engineering recently announced four scholarly chairs: Danielle Bassett, Russell Composto, Boon Thau Loo and Mark Yim.

Dr. Bassett has been named the J. Peter Skirkanich Professor of Bioengineering. Dr. Bassett is a professor in the department of bioengineering at the School of Engineering and Applied Science. She holds a PhD in physics from the University of Cambridge and completed her postdoctoral training at the University of California, Santa Barbara, before joining Penn in 2013.

Dr. Bassett has received numerous awards for her research, including an Alfred P. Sloan Research Fellowship, a MacArthur Fellowship, an Office of Naval Research Young Investigator Award, a National Science Foundation CAREER Award and, most recently, an Erdos-
Renyi Prize in Network Science, to name a few. She has authored over 190 peer-reviewed publications as well as numerous book chapters and teaching materials. She is the founding director of the Penn Network Visualization Program, a combined undergraduate art internship and K-12 outreach program bridging network science and the visual arts.

Dr. Bassett’s research is in the area of complex systems and network science, with applications to biological, physical and social networks. She examines dynamic changes in network architecture, the interaction between topological properties of networks, and the influence of network topology on signal propagation and system function.

The J. Peter Skirkanich Professorship was established  to honor J. Peter “Pete” Skirkanich, an alumnus, trustee and member of the School of Engineering and Applied Science Board of Overseers who also served as co-chair of Penn Engineering’s Making History through Innovation capital campaign and was a member of the University’s Making History steering committee. His generous support for Penn Engineering paved the way for Skirkanich Hall.

Dr. Composto, a professor in the department of materials science and engineering at Penn Engineering, has been named the Howell Family Faculty Fellow. He joined Penn in 1990 after an appointment as a Research Scientist at Brookhaven National Laboratory and a postdoctoral fellowship at the University of Massachusetts. He is an alumnus of Cornell University, where he received his doctoral degree in 1987.

Dr. Composto is a member of a number of centers and institutes and is the director of Research and Education in Active Coatings Technologies (REACT) for human habitat, a Partnerships for International Research and Education (PIRE) project funded by the National Science Foundation (NSF) and the University of Pennsylvania. Dr. Composto is a previous recipient of the Provost’s Award for Distinguished PhD Teaching and Mentoring. He also serves at the associate dean for undergraduate education.

Dr. Composto’s research is in the area of polymer science and biomolecular engineering. His interests extend to polymer surfaces and interfaces, adhesion and diffusion, and nanocomposite polymer blend and copolymer films. His biomaterials work centers around manipulating the surface of polymers to elicit control over protein adsorption, as well as cell adhesion, orientation and function. He has an active research program at the interface of polymer science and biomolecular engineering, which combines block copolymer self-assemble as a basis for orienting stiff biological molecules.

The Howell Family Faculty Fellow was established to provide financial support to a faculty member in the School of Engineering and Applied Science. This faculty fellow helped launch the dean’s strategic goal to increase the School’s number of named, endowed faculty positions.

Dr. Loo has been named the RCA Professor of Artificial Intelligence in the School of Engineering and Applied Science.

Dr. Loo is a professor in the department of computer and information science at the School of Engineering and Applied Science. He earned a PhD in computer science from the University of California at Berkeley and conducted postdoctoral research at Microsoft Research before joining Penn in 2007.

Dr. Loo is the recipient of numerous awards, including the NSF CAREER award, the Air Force Office of Scientific Research (AFOSR) Young Investigator Award, and Penn’s Emerging Inventor of the year award. He currently serves as Penn Engineering’s associate dean for master’s and professional programs.

Dr. Loo’s research focuses on distributed data management systems, Internet-scale query processing and the application of database technologies to networked systems. He is particularly interested in developing information-centric network architectures that can be easily extended, composed and formally verified. His recent projects include applying declarative networking techniques in the areas of dynamic network composition, adaptive mobile ad-hoc networks and scalable knowledge-based networks. He is also exploring novel database-inspired techniques for diagnosing, securing and verifying network protocols. Dr. Loo is an active entrepreneur and has founded and helped start several new companies.

The RCA Professorship was established with the support of RCA, originally the Radio Corporation of America, which was one of the earliest and most successful consumer electronics companies, known for nearly 100 years of innovations in wireless communication, radio, audio and television.

Mark Yim has been named the Asa Whitney Professor of Mechanical Engineering. Dr. Yim is a professor in the department of mechanical engineering and applied mechanics at the School of Engineering and Applied Science. He earned a PhD in mechanical engineering from Stanford University and was a senior researcher at the Palo Alto Research Center for several years before joining Penn in 2004.

Dr. Yim is the recipient of several awards, including the Christian R. and Mary F. Lindback Award for Distinguished Teaching. He is a World Technology Network Fellow, was inducted into MIT’s TR100 in 1999 and was named a National Academy of Inventors Fellow in 2018. He is also the director of the General Robotics, Automation, Sensing and Perception (GRASP) Laboratory at Penn Engineering.

Dr. Yim’s research expertise centers on the design and building of modular self-reconfigurable robots. His most recent project is SMORES-EP, a modular robot that can reconfigure itself into different shapes depending on the task and environment at hand. His other research interests include product design, reactive art and architecture, snake locomotion, flying robots and self-assembling floating structures. He has been issued over 40 patents for his work.

The Asa Whitney Professorship was established to honor Asa Whitney, benefactor of Penn’s first endowed professorship, whose bequest established the Asa Whitney Professor of Dynamical Engineering in 1877.

Ritesh Agarwal, Liang Feng: $1.98 Million NSF Grant

  • September 17, 2019
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caption: Ritesh Agarwalcaption: Liang FengIn 2016, the National Science Foundation (NSF) released a list of 10 Big Ideas—areas where innovative research could help catapult the country’s future forward. Now, in 2019, the NSF has begun enabling those ideas by awarding grants to bright minds in fields like engineering, including a $1.98 million grant received by a Penn-led team to work on the NSF’s Quantum Leap initiative.

Ritesh Agarwal, professor of materials science and engineering in Penn Engingeering, is heading the research team and is working with Liang Feng, assistant professor of materials science and engineering and of electrical and systems engineering, as well as researchers from the City College of New York and Texas A&M University.

The team will be working to engineer proof-of-concept quantum circuits that incorporate two-dimensional quantum materials. Photonic computing, an area in which Dr. Agarwal has previous research experience, will also be an integral part of their circuit system. The quantum photonic circuits to be designed for this project could eventually be incorporated into quantum computers that will revolutionize computing, sensing, and communication technologies.

Dr. Agarwal and Dr. Feng are also collaborating on another NSF project that is part of the Quantum Leap initiative. They are one of eight teams selected for its Research Advanced by Interdisciplinary Science and Engineering —Engineering Quantum Integrated Platforms (RAISE-EQuIP) grant program.

US News & World Report 2020 Rankings

  • September 17, 2019
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In the newly released 2020 US News & World Report ranking of United States universities, Penn was ranked #6, tied with Stanford and the University of Chicago. This is Penn’s highest position in the rankings since 2013. Penn was also ranked #15 in Best Value Schools and #27 for Most Innovative Schools.

The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania has retained its #1 post as the best undergraduate business program in the country, which it has held for many years. It is also ranked #1 in two specialties: finance and real estate; ranked #2 in management and marketing; #3 in production/operation management and quantitative analysis; #5 in entrepreneurship and insurance; #6 in international business; and #7 in accounting.

Penn’s School of Engineering and Applied Science was listed #20 (tied with Duke University, Rice University, University of California–San Diego and University of Washington), and #10 in the biomedical specialty, for undergraduate engineering programs at schools whose highest degree is a doctorate.

Mohamed A. El-Erian: Lauder Institute Senior Global Fellow and Part-Time Professor of Practice at Wharton

  • September 17, 2019
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caption: Mohamed El-Eriancaption: Rene Kern

Mohamed A. El-Erian has been named a Senior Global Fellow at the Joseph H. Lauder Institute of Management & International Studies and part-time professor of practice at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania. The appointment, effective July 1, 2019, was announced by Martine Haas, Anthony L. Davis Director of the Lauder Institute and professor of management. Dr. El-Erian has joined the Penn community thanks to the generous support of Rene M. Kern (G’90, WG’90).

As part of the Senior Global Fellows Program at the Lauder Institute, Dr. El-Erian will leverage his distinguished experience in global affairs, policy and business to contribute to the curriculum and serve as a mentor to the student community.

“We are simply delighted to have professor El-Erian at the Lauder Institute as an esteemed member of our faculty,” said Dr. Haas. “His reputation precedes him as a thought leader of global renown. His impressive teaching, research and global profile will advance Lauder’s work to develop citizens into decision makers who change the world.”

“Leadership is at the heart of Lauder and Wharton. And at its core, leadership is experiential. Mohamed’s extraordinary career exemplifies both leadership and excellence in the era of globalization,” explained Geoffrey Garrett, Dean of the Wharton School. “He is a real trailblazer whose incredible insight and experience will inspire our students to think and act globally.”

A widely followed leader in economics and finance, Dr. El-Erian is chief economic adviser at Allianz, senior advisor at Gramercy, and the incoming president of Queens’ College at the University of Cambridge effective fall 2020. His previous appointments include chairman of President Barack Obama’s Global Development Council, CEO of the Harvard Management Company, deputy director of the International Monetary Fund, and CEO/co-CIO of PIMCO.

In addition to being a contributing editor at the Financial Times, columnist for Bloomberg Opinion and author of two New York Times best sellers, he was named four years in a row to Foreign Policy’s list of Top 100 Global Thinkers. He is credited with identifying and coining the concept of the “New Normal” in 2009 to describe the likely sluggish economic performance of advanced economies after the 2008 global financial crisis, and for pointing out in 2016 the limitations to protracted and sole reliance on central bank policies.

Dr. El-Erian earned his MPhil and PhD in economics from the University of Oxford in 1982 and 1985, respectively, and he received his bachelor’s degree from the University of Cambridge in 1980.

“The opportunity to support bringing professor El-Erian to the Lauder Institute is a true privilege,” said Mr. Kern. “He is a celebrated global leader whose knowledge and insight will be eye-opening for our students, enriching their learning experience and the international skillset they carry with them out in the world. We’re delighted to welcome professor El-Erian to the Lauder community.”

A dedicated leader in the Lauder Institute, Mr. Kern serves as vice chairman of the Lauder Board of Governors and as a member of the Lauder Advisory Council, and is a proud Lauder alumnus and Penn parent. In addition to his support of this professorship, he established the Kern Family Fellowship, an endowed fund to provide financial support to Lauder Institute students. Mr. Kern is an advisory director of General Atlantic, a leading global investment firm, where he has served for 22 years, establishing the firm’s business in Europe, opening its London office, leading the firm’s financial services sector and serving as head of its Resources Group. Previously, Mr. Kern worked in investment banking at Morgan Stanley and as a management consultant at Bain & Company.

Morris Arboretum: $1.5 Million to Endow Chief Arborist Position

  • September 17, 2019
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Morris Arboretum of the University of Pennsylvania announced that it has raised $1.5 million to support and endow a critical position at the Arboretum, that of the Paul W. Meyer Chief Arborist. The position is expected to be filled at the beginning of 2020.

“Funding the chief arborist position is something that we have been working towards for several years. It is remarkably gratifying to have secured the funding that will allow us to fill this critical Arboretum role. I am so grateful to the McCausland Foundation and to Janet and John Haas for making this a reality,” said Anthony Aiello, the Gayle E. Mahoney Director of Horticulture and Curator. The chief arborist will report to the director of horticulture.

Elizabeth McCausland Salata, Arboretum board member and Director at The McCausland Foundation, remarked that “The McCausland Foundation is so grateful to Paul Meyer, who inspired so many with his message of the great value of trees in urban environments.  It is our great privilege to have helped establish and name the Chief Arborist position in Paul’s honor.”

Janet Haas, Arboretum board member emerita, echoed these sentiments, noting that “Paul is a regional hero for his work over decades educating our community, and those far beyond it, about trees. We cannot imagine a more fitting way to honor his legacy than to ensure that he is associated in perpetuity with the chief arborist position.”

Mr. Meyer, the former F. Otto Haas Executive Director of Morris Arboretum of the University of Pennsylvania, retired last spring after 43 years of service, during which time the Arboretum grew and flourished (Almanac March 26, 2019).

Morris Arboretum’s tree collection is a defining feature of the garden and is a fundamental aspect of its mission. Of the 11,985 accessioned plants throughout the Arboretum (not including those in the greenhouse), 4,127 of these are classified as trees, ranging from small, recently-planted seedlings, to vigorous teenage and maturing trees to impressive veteran specimens.

As a museum, Morris Arboretum’s tree collection is insured, and based on a valuation that was conducted in 2013, it has a total estimated value of $25 million, making the tree collection one of the top assets of the Arboretum.

It is essential to preserve, maintain and grow this collection in order to achieve Morris Arboretum’s goals of research, horticulture and education.

The continued efforts to focus and improve Morris Arboretum’s tree care ensures that this resource continues for future generations. Adding the chief arborist will be a great addition in allowing the Arboretum to care for its trees while also strengthening the arboriculture education and outreach programs.

Morris Arboretum is one of more than 30 Philadelphia gardens in America’s Garden Capital. This 92-acre horticultural display garden features a spectacular collection of mature trees in a beautiful and colorful landscape.  The official arboretum of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, effective 1988, Morris Arboretum is listed on the National Register of Historic Places and accredited by the American Association of Museums.

The 2020 Models of Excellence Award Call for Nominations

  • September 17, 2019
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There are many words Penn staff have used to praise their colleagues’ work. Extraordinary, innovative, impactful and transformative are just a few. Now’s your chance to turn these compliments into campus-wide recognition by participating in the 2020 Models of Excellence Call for Nominations process.

Each year, at the Models of Excellence Awards ceremony, Penn showcases individual staff members and teams, revealing their remarkable contributions to the University. Nominations for fiscal year 2020 are open now through October 25.

The online nomination form and guide are available at www.hr.upenn.edu/models This year you can also refer to the Quick Start Guide to Submitting a Nomination to make navigating the nomination process even easier.

The Models of Excellence award program celebrates the outstanding achievements of full- and part-time staff members and teams throughout the University’s schools and centers. Awards are presented in three categories:

Models of Excellence Award—recognizes staff member accomplishments that reflect initiative, leadership, increased efficiency and a deep commitment to service.

Model Supervisor Award—honors supervisors who are effective and productive leaders for the University.

Pillars of Excellence Award—recognizes the important support Penn’s weekly-paid staff members provide to promote the University’s mission.

Models of Excellence, Model Supervisor and Pillars of Excellence award recipients each receive $500 and a symbolic award. Nominees selected for honorable mention receive $250 and a symbolic award. Awards will be presented at the Models of Excellence ceremony on April 28, 2020 at 4 p.m. at Irvine Auditorium. The entire Penn community is invited to attend.

Need Help to Complete a Nomination?

Learn how to write a stellar nomination that magnifies the exceptional work of your colleagues by attending a How to Nominate information session. Two sessions will be held on:

Monday, September 30, 3-4 p.m.

Thursday, October 10, noon-1p.m.

Both sessions will take place at Suite 1A South, 3624 Market Street.

Register at www.hr.upenn.edu/models-infosession or models@hr.upenn.edu Your co-workers can’t receive honors without your nomination, so your participation is key.

For more information about the Models of Excellence staff recognition program, visit www.hr.upenn.edu/models or contact Human Resources at models@hr.upenn.edu

—Division of Human Resources

Deaths

Gregory Eells, CAPS

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caption: Gregory Eells

Gregory Eells, the executive director of Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS), died September 9 in Philadelphia from suicide. He was 52.

Dr. Eells earned a PhD in counseling psychology from Oklahoma State University, an MA in psychology from Eastern Illinois University and a BA in psychology and biology from Greenville College. Before coming to Penn, he had served five years as director of the University Counseling Center at the University of Southern Mississippi and was director of counseling and psychological services at Cornell University 2003-2019. He was elected president of the Association for University and College Counseling Center Directors in 2007, serving two years in that position, as well as chair of the Mental Health Section of the American College Health Association in 2014, among numerous other honors.

He published dozens of scholarly articles, winning the AUCCCD’s Award for Excellence in Counseling Center Scholarship in 2016 and he has taught both graduate and undergraduate students in courses on counseling, social psychology and developmental psychology.

He is survived by his wife, Michelle; mother, Jeanette Eells-Rich; and three children, Kayla, Cole and Cade.

Carol Welty Faris, Annenberg School

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Carol Welty Faris, former employee of Penn Law, the University’s Provost Office and the Annenberg School for Communication, died August 2. She was 90.

Ms. Faris was born in Oberlin, Ohio. She studied music at Colorado College and the University of Colorado and then attended Columbia University. She lived in London and Edinburgh, Scotland, while her husband served in the US Air Force.

She moved from Cambridge, Massachusetts, to Philadelphia in 1966. She studied with and succeeded Newell Robinson as organist and choirmaster at Grace Church, Mt. Airy, which at the time was renowned for its choir of men and boys. She was the first adult woman to sing in the choir on a regular basis and was the second woman to serve on the church vestry.

Ms. Faris joined the staff at Penn in 1977 as a bibliographer/researcher at Penn Law. In 1981, she became a secretary in the Provost’s Office. From 1983 until her retirement in 1992, she was a secretary at the Annenberg School.

Ms. Faris also worked at Marlboro Music from 1989 until 2009 and the Pennsylvania Health Law Project in the 1970s.

Ms. Faris is survived by her sister, Sylvia Geer; three sons; and seven grandchildren.

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To Report A Death

Almanac appreciates being informed of the deaths of current and former faculty and staff members, students and other members of the University community. Call (215) 898-5274 or email almanac@upenn.edu

However, notices of alumni deaths should be directed to the Alumni Records Office at Suite 300, 2929 Walnut St., (215) 898-8136 or email record@ben.dev.upenn.edu

Governance

Council Meeting Coverage

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On Wednesday, September 11, at the first Council meeting of the academic year, President Amy Gutmann preceded the usual agenda items with comments about the recent loss of Gregory Eells, the CAPS executive director. President Gutmann expressed her commitment to ensuring that support and mental health resources are available for students, faculty and staff. She then requested a moment of silence in Dr. Eells’s memory.

President Gutmann appointed this year’s moderator, professor of English Emily Steiner. President Gutmann also announced that Lauren Steinfeld, chief privacy officer for Penn Medicine and senior advisory for privacy for the University, will once again be the parliamentarian.

Steering Chair Steven Kimbrough announced that the Focus Issues selected by Steering for this year will be: Penn Climate Action Plan 3.0 (December 4); How Penn Supports Student Research at Undergraduate and Graduate Levels (January 29); Update on Campus Security and Emergency Preparedness (February 19); The Power of Penn campaign (March 25).

Open Forums will be held at the Council meetings on December 4 and February 19.

Provost Wendell Pritchett introduced the presentation about this year’s theme year programming on the Year of Data and turned it over to Vice Provost for Education Beth Winkelstein. She thanked all those who have participated in some way or made suggestions for programming. David Fox, director of New Student Orientation and Academic Initiatives, noted that this year’s theme is the 12th theme year and that the Penn Reading Project (PRP), now in its 29th year, is embedded into the theme. There was a near-record number of discussion leader volunteer for the PRP discussions held during New Student Orientation. The book read by the new students was Weapons of Math Destruction. Mr. Fox said that grants are available for those who want to propose programming related to the theme. He then divulged next year’s theme: the Year of Jazz and the 30th PRP will focus on August Wilson’s play, Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom.

The next meeting of University Council will be on October 23.

WPPSA Programs and Executive Board 2019-2020

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WPPSA Programs: 2019-2020

The WPPSA Executive Board invites all non-exempt staff to attend membership programs. WPPSA’s scheduled programs for the Fall 2019 Semester are brown bag gatherings, but light snacks will be available. Programs will be held 12:30-1:30 p.m. at 3401 Walnut Street, B wing, conference room 201 on October 3, November 12 and December 10.

WPPSA Executive Board 2019-2020

Chair: Thalia Mangan, Administrative Assistant, Office of Student Affairs

Chair-elect: Cydnee Bryant, Administrative Coordinator, Office of the VPUL

Secretary: Maureen Goldsmith, Administrative Coordinator, Information Systems and Computing

Treasurer: Open

Listserv Manager: Laura Naden, Administrative Coordinator, Netter Center for Community Partnerships

Webmaster: Jennifer Vatza, Web Manager, Department of Economics

Honors

Amy Castro Baker: Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Grant

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caption: Amy Castro BakerA team of faculty researchers from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, and the University of Pennsylvania have received a Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Evidence for Action grant of about $680,000 to evaluate an innovative project that could help alleviate poverty and inequality in Stockton, California.

Stacia Martin-West, an assistant professor in UT’s College of Social Work, along with Amy Castro Baker, an assistant professor at Penn’s School of Social Policy & Practice, will use the funding to evaluate the impact of the Stockton Economic Empowerment Demonstration (SEED), the country’s first city-led guaranteed income pilot program. SEED is a collaboration of the Stockton mayor’s office, the Reinvent South Stockton Coalition, the Economic Security Project (ESP) and the residents of Stockton.

Through SEED, 125 Stockton families are getting $500 a month with no strings attached to see if guaranteed monthly income helps alleviate economic instability and inequity. Willing Stockton residents were selected at random to participate; each participant is at least 18 years old and resides in a neighborhood where the median income is $46,033 or less. The families began receiving the funding in February and will continue to get it through August 2020—a total of 18 months. The money comes largely from private donors.

“SEED is born out of the simple belief that the best investments we can make are in our people,” the project overview states. “A hand up rather than a handout, SEED seeks to empower its recipients financially and to prove to supporters and skeptics alike that poverty results from a lack of cash, not character.”

The RWJF Evidence for Action grant is supporting Dr. Martin-West and Dr. Baker for 36 months as they evaluate the program during the disbursement period and for about a year after the payments end.

Ryan Baker: Two NSF Grants

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caption: Ryan BakerRyan Baker, associate professor at Penn GSE and director of the Penn Center for Learning Analytics, and colleagues at the University of Wisconsin and Harvard University, were awarded approximately $447,000 by the National Science Foundation to develop a new game that teaches aquatic ecosystems and scientific inquiry skills. The game will observe student gameplay and learn how to better sequence content and then use this information to improve its own educational effectiveness.

Dr. Baker and colleagues at the University of Massachusetts Amherst and Worcester Polytechnic Institute received an award from the National Science Foundation for $219,000 to study how to develop artificially intelligent learning systems that ask teachers for advice on how to interact with students. Rather than asking the teacher for broad rules which can be hard to articulate, the system will occasionally ask the teacher what to do in specific real situations and learn the teacher’s preferences.

Wendy Chan: CHOP Grant

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Wendy Chan, assistant professor in the human development and quantitative methods division of Penn GSE, was awarded a grant from the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia for $21,456 for “Reducing Disparities in Behavioral Health Treatment for Children in Primary Care.” This study assesses the impact of a behavioral therapy program on patient-
centered outcomes for children with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). The study will focus primarily on low-income households.

Dr. Chan specializes in applied educational statistics, and her research projects and interests are at the leading edge of work on statistics methods in field contexts, including scaling up interventions. With partial identification, her work examines the role of alternative assumptions to strong ignorability of sample selection in making inferences on population parameters. With small area estimation, Dr. Chan’s work considers use of small area models in improving the precision of estimators when there is limited sample size. Aside from her work on generalization, Dr. Chan’s research has ventured into power analyses and analyzed the extent to which analogies in design parameters can be made.

Karen Detlefsen, Sarah Gordon, David McNight: NEH Grants

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The National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) recently announced $29 million in awards for 215 humanities projects across the country. This round of funding, NEH’s third and last for fiscal year 2019, will support vital research, education, preservation and public programs in the humanities. The recipients from University of Pennsylvania are:

Project Director: Karen Detlefsen; Lisa Shapiro (co-project director); Project Title: “New Narratives in the History of Philosophy: Women and Early Modern European Philosophy Project.” Description: A conference on the works of early modern women philosophers (1500 to 1850) in preparation for an edited volume of essays.

Project Director: Sarah Gordon; Kevin Waite (co-project director) Project Title: “The Long Road to Freedom: Biddy Mason (1818–1891) and the Making of Black Los Angeles Project.” Description: Preparation of a co-authored book and website relating to the remarkable story of freedwoman Biddy Mason (1818–1891) and her role in the development of the First African Methodist Church in Los Angeles.

Project Director: David McKnight; Rebecca Bowler (co-project director); Claire Drewery (co-project director); Project Title: “The Papers of British Writer and Suffragist May Sinclair (1863–1946): Creating a Digital Archive of her Manuscripts Project.” Description: A meeting of editors, technology experts and archivists leading to the preparation of a prototype digital edition of the works of May Sinclair (1863–1946), novelist and philosopher.

Michael Hanchard:  Ralph J. Bunche Award

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caption: Michael HanchardMichael Hanchard, professor and chair of Africana studies and director of the Marginalized Populations Project in the Center for Africana Studies, received the 2019 Ralph J. Bunche Award from the American Political Science Association. The annual award honors the best scholarly work in political science on ethnic and cultural pluralism.

Dr. Hanchard received the award for his book The Spectre of Race: How Discrimination Haunts Western Democracy. In it, he argues that exclusionary policies have always been central to democratic practices since their beginnings in classical times, discusses how marginalization is reinforced in modern politics and explains why these contradictions need to be fully examined if the dynamics of democracy are to be truly understood. The book was named one of Times Higher Education’s Best Books of 2018.

Karen Lasater: AcademyHealth Award

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Penn Nursing’s Karen Lasater, assistant professor of nursing, senior fellow at the Center for Health Outcomes & Policy Research and senior fellow at the Leonard Davis Institute of Health Economics, has won the 2019 AcademyHealth Interdisciplinary Research Group on Nursing Issues’ New Investigator Award.

One of four AcademyHealth Interest Groups targeting different areas of health care, IRGNI focuses on producing scientific evidence relevant to nursing practice, policy, education and the development of nurses as health services researchers. The IRGNI New Investigator Award honors “the scientific work of emerging scholars in the field of health services research relevant to nursing practice, workforce and education.”

Dr. Lasater has been investigating how patient outcomes correlate to various organization features of the nursing environment. The IRGNI cited her latest work as co-investigator on a study of surgical Medicare patients. The work found that patients in hospitals with better nursing resources experienced lower mortality, fewer complications, fewer readmissions and shorter lengths of stay.

Dan Mindiola, Abraham Nitzan: ACS National Award

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Dan Mindiola, the Brush Family Professor of Chemistry, and Abraham Nitzan, the Donner Professor of Physical Sciences Professor of Chemistry, are 2020 recipients of awards administered by the American Chemical Society. Dr. Nitzan will receive the ACS Award in Theoretical Chemistry. Dr. Mindiola will receive the F. Albert Cotton Award in Synthetic Inorganic Chemistry. Recipients will be honored at the awards ceremony on Tuesday, March 24, 2020, in conjunction with the ACS Spring National Meeting in Philadelphia.

Michael Nakkula: The Future Project Grant

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Michael Nakkula, professor of practice and chair of applied psychology in Penn GSE’s human development and quantitative methods division, received a $145,000 grant from The Future Project to lead a study of an innovative national project on developmental life coaching to promote “possibility thinking” in urban high schools. The initiative helps fill the gap in counseling and related life-planning supports in urban schools across the country. The study focuses on initiatives in Detroit, Washington, DC, Newark and New Haven.

Dr. Nakkula’s teaching and research focus on the development of resilience and the promotion of possibility development among children and youth from low-income backgrounds. He is particularly interested in the integration of counseling, mentoring and educational processes in urban schools to create contexts that allow students to thrive in school and during their transition to higher education and career opportunities. Dr. Nakkula works with many national and international organizations to develop applied research strategies that promote the study of developmental and educational initiatives in support of enhanced mental health and optimal youth development.

Diane Spatz: Award of Excellence in Research

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caption: Diane SpatzPenn Nursing’s Diane L. Spatz was recently given the Award of Excellence in Research by the Association of Women’s Health, Obstetrics and Neonatal Nurses (AWHONN). This award recognizes members who have exemplified the highest standards of service to nursing.

Dr. Spatz is professor of perinatal nursing and the Helen M. Shearer Professor of Nutrition at Penn Nursing, sharing a joint appointment as a nurse researcher and director of the lactation program at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP) and the clinical coordinator of the CHOP Mothers’ Milk Bank. In the University portion of her job, she teaches a semester-long course on breastfeeding and human lactation to undergraduate nursing students, and in the hospital portion of her job she developed the breastfeeding resource nurse program.

In 2004, Dr. Spatz developed her 10-step model for human milk and breastfeeding in vulnerable infants. This model has been implemented in NICUs throughout the United States and other countries worldwide. She has been named a prestigious Edge Runner for the American Academy of Nursing related to the development and outcomes of her model.

Dr. Spatz is an active researcher, clinician and educator who is internationally recognized for her work surrounding the use of human milk and breastfeeding, particularly in vulnerable populations.

Kevin Turner, Shu Yang, Mark Yim: Manufacturing PA Initiative Grants

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Governor Tom Wolf recently announced grants to fund 26 projects as part of the Manufacturing PA Innovation Program, three of which were awarded to projects at the University of Pennsylvania. The Manufacturing PA Innovation Program aims to capitalize on the cutting-edge science and engineering research of Pennsylvania’s educational institutes by forging partnerships between them and the manufacturing sector.

The projects spearheaded by Penn SEAS are led by Kevin Turner, Shu Yang and Mark Yim.

Each project was granted approximately $70,000. The Penn professors will be collaborating with Pennsylvania-based companies to bring their groundbreaking visions to life.

Dr. Turner, professor and chair of the department of mechanical engineering and applied mechanics, will be collaborating with Penn Color to investigate the materials used in commercial ink and to create less expensive ink, pushing the printing industry in a progressive direction.

Along with the pharmaceutical company Merck, Dr. Yang, professor of materials science and engineering, will be designing a drug capsule that deploys drugs gradually, remaining in the stomach for up to two weeks.

The project led by Dr. Yim, professor of mechanical engineering and applied science, will work in conjunction with Greppo Technologies, a Pennovation Center-based spin-off company he founded, to develop steerable needles that could deliver minimally invasive medical treatments.

Penn Medicine Hospitals: Leaders in LGBTQ Healthcare Equality

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All six of Penn Medicine’s hospitals will be recognized as 2019 leaders in LGBTQ health-care equality by the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) Foundation, the educational arm of the country’s largest lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ) civil rights organization.

The HRC Foundation has consistently recognized Penn Medicine hospitals as leaders in LGBTQ patient-centered care, but this year marks two firsts for the health system. Princeton Health participated in the foundation’s Healthcare Equality Index survey for the first time and scored a total of 100/100 points, earning the HRC’s coveted LGBTQ Healthcare Equality Leader designation. Penn Medicine’s Lancaster General Health also earned the Equality Leader designation. The Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, Pennsylvania Hospital, Penn Presbyterian Medical Center and Chester County Hospital will be awarded Top Performer designations.

The honors will be part of the HRC Foundation’s 2019 Healthcare Equality Index, which surveyed US health-care institutions and scored them based on policies and practices dedicated to the equitable treatment and inclusion of their LGBTQ patients, visitors and employees—who may face discrimination and challenges obtaining quality care. The survey participants are assessed on four criteria: non-discrimination and staff training, patient services and support, employee benefits and policies, and patient and community engagement. Participants that receive the maximum score in each category and a total score of 100 points earn the status of LGBTQ Healthcare Equality Leader, and facilities that score 80 to 95 points are named Top Performers.

Features

The University of Pennsylvania 2019 Annual Security & Fire Safety Report

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(Statistics for 2016-2017-2018)

The federal Jeanne Clery Disclosure of Campus Security Policy and Campus Crime Statistics Act, as amended, requires colleges and universities to provide information related to security policies and procedures and specific statistics for criminal incidents, arrests and disciplinary referrals to students and employees, and to make the information and statistics available to prospective students and employees upon request. Federal law also requires institutions with on-campus housing to share an annual fire report with the campus community.

In addition, the Uniform Crime Reporting Act requires Pennsylvania colleges and universities to provide information related to security policies and procedures to students, employees and applicants; to provide certain crime statistics to students and employees; and to make those statistics available to applicants and prospective employees upon request.

To review the University’s most recent annual report containing this information, please visit: https://www.publicsafety.upenn.edu/ASR/2019_ASR_PENN.pdf

You may request a paper copy of the report by calling the Office of the Vice President for Public Safety at (215) 898-7515 or by emailing vp@publicsafety.upenn.edu

Events

Retirement Information Sessions: September 25

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If your retirement is within view, gather the right information about medical benefits and income and start putting a plan in place that works for you by attending Penn’s semi-annual Thinking About Retirement presentations.

The presentations will be held on September 25, starting at 9 a.m. at the Inn at Penn. Specially designed for Penn staff and faculty, Thinking About Retirement presents three different concurrent workshops, each covering an important aspect of retiree benefits: Penn Benefits and Medicare, Income Options with TIAA, and Social Security.

At the Penn Benefits and Medicare session, representatives from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, along with Benefits specialists from Human Resources, will explain the Rule of 75, retirement healthcare options, and how they integrate with Medicare.

At Income Options with TIAA, a retirement plan counselor will discuss budgeting in retirement, income options and investments.

During the Social Security session, a representative from the Social Security Administration will share valuable details about how this program impacts your retirement plans. You will also get an overview of Social Security benefits, eligibility rules, how to apply, benefits for your spouse or same-sex domestic partner, and more.

Benefits specialists from Penn Human Resources will be available throughout the event to answer your questions about retirement savings, health care, and other aspects of retiree benefits for you and your dependents.

To register for the presentations, visit www.hr.upenn.edu/thinkretirement

—Human Resources

Participating in the Employee Resource and Volunteer Fair: October 1

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Dear University of Pennsylvania Departments & External Vendors,

The Penn Professional Staff Assembly (PPSA) and the Penn Weekly-Paid Professional Staff Assembly (WPPSA), in partnership with the offices of the Executive Vice President and the Division of Human Resources, are co-sponsoring an Employee Resource and Volunteer Fair on Tuesday, October 1, 2019 noon-1:30 p.m. in Bodek Lounge and the Reading Room, Houston Hall. The purpose of the fair is to provide information to employees regarding the vast and varied campus resources and services available to them as well as volunteer opportunities. The fair will be open to the entire Penn community.

We are excited to offer you an opportunity to participate in the 2019 Employee Resource Fair. We would welcome representation from your area and encourage you to showcase your services. Last year the fair was attended by an estimated 500 individuals. 

If you would like to participate, pre-registration is required, and we ask that two representatives from your office staff a table. Typically, participants bring both informational and promotional materials on their services, brochures, giveaways, etc. Please feel free to advertise your participation in the Resource Fair through your email lists and newsletters. Set-up will take place 11-11:45 a.m. and breakdown 1:30-2 p.m. Register here: https://upenn.irisregistration.com/Form/ERF2019

In addition to the Employee Resource Fair, there will be a Volunteer Fair organized in tandem with the event. This Volunteer Fair takes place in the Reading Room next to Bodek Lounge. PPSA invites groups from the Philadelphia area to inform members of the Penn community about the volunteer opportunities they have available. There will be approximately 10-15 local non-profits represented at the fair. Space is limited.

Thank you for your thoughtful consideration to participate in the 2019 Employee
Resource Fair. For all inquiries, please contact ppsa@lists.upenn.edu

—Nadir Sharif, PPSA Chair

—Thalia Mangan, WPPSA Chair

The Weitzman School:  A Celebration of Design: October 3

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A historic afternoon commemorating the naming of the University of Pennsylvania Stuart Weitzman School of Design and the significance of investing in people and education to make a lasting impact on the world will be held on Thursday, October 3, 1-6 p.m.

Events are free of charge, but advance registration at https://tinyurl.com/yxfx7f3t is requested.

• Panel I: Balancing Acts—The Interplay of Design, Technology and the Natural World; Lower Gallery, Meyerson Hall; 1-2 p.m.

A dramatically cantilevered building for nanoscience. A green ribbon of park on an abandoned rail line. Iconic product design. When beauty meets efficiency, everyone wins. Learn from experts how the intentionality of our built environment influences—and sometimes determines—the way we live.

Moderator: Inga Saffron, Pulitzer Prize-winning architecture critic, The Philadelphia Inquirer; Panelists: James Corner, founder and director, James Corner Field Operations (High Line, New York); Doreen Lorenzo, assistant dean, School of Design and Creative Technologies, University of Texas (former president, frog); Marion Weiss, cofounder, WEISS/MANFREDI, and Graham Chair Professor of Architecture, Weitzman School of Design (Singh Center for Nanotechnology)

• Panel II: Whom Do We Honor … and How? Exploring the Meaning of Memorials; Lower Gallery, Meyerson Hall; 2-3 p.m.

From statues of generals … to portraits of presidents … to vivid murals on the walls of urban row houses. Who decides who “rates” a permanent public likeness—and who remains overlooked and underappreciated? Join the conversation on this nuanced and emotional topic with a panel of experts.

Moderator: Lisa Servon, Kevin and Erica Penn Presidential Professor and chair of city and regional planning, Weitzman School of Design; Panelists: Christian Benimana, senior principal and managing director, MASS Design (Rwinkwavu NICU/OR, Rwanda); Sharon Hayes, associate professor of fine arts, Weitzman School of Design (Monument Lab); Randall Mason, associate professor, historic preservation, Weitzman School of Design (Rwanda Genocide Memorial Conservation and Training)

The Critic Weighs In: A Conversation About Design, Architecture, Landscape and Planning; 3:30-4:45 p.m.; Irvine Auditorium

Hosted by President Amy Gutmann and Dean Frederick Steiner, this Keynote program will feature Paul Goldberger, author and Pulitzer Prize-winning architectural critic (The New York Times, The New Yorker, Vanity Fair). Dr. Gutmann and Paul Goldberger will have a conversation about a wide array of fascinating design topics.

• Naming Ceremony; 5-6:30 p.m.; Stuart Weitzman Plaza, outside Meyerson Hall; join President Gutmann, Dean Steiner and Stuart Weitzman (W’63) for a naming ceremony.

Nectar: an interdisciplinary student exhibition in honor of The Weitzman School: A Celebration of Design about things that are sweet, sticky and dangerous; curated by Richard Weller, professor and chair of landscape architecture, Margy and Martin  Meyerson Chair of Urbanism, and co-executive director of the Ian I McHarg Center for Urbanism and Ecology; running October 1-4 in Upper and Lower Galleries of Meyerson Hall.

27th Annual Penn Family Day: October 12

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Penn Family Day welcomes faculty, staff and postdoctoral scholars to enjoy games, Penn Athletics, and science and cultural activities in appreciation of the Penn community and our families. The 27th annual Penn Family Day celebration will take place on Saturday, October 12.

You can order up to four free tickets for the Tailgate Party on Shoemaker Green and Quaker football game in historic Franklin Field. Additional tickets can be purchased for $8 each. Order tickets online now or at the Penn Athletic Ticket Office in Weightman Hall, at 235 S. 33rd Street, between Walnut and Spruce Streets.

Tickets are required for the Tailgate Party and football game. Be sure to order your free tickets by October 9 to get in on all the fun.

Free Family Day parking will be available with your PennCard at the Walnut 38 and Chestnut 34 garages.

Family Day Schedule

10 a.m.-5 p.m.: At the Penn Museum, you can stroll through 10,000 years of history from around the world all under one roof. Imagine exploring Ancient Egypt; China, Japan; Greece; Rome; and more—before or after the Tailgate Party. Admission is free with your PennCard. Walk through the Stoner Courtyard to use the Trescher Entrance, or use the Kress/Group Entrance on the east side of the building.

11:30 a.m.-1 p.m.: Enjoy lunch, games, face-painting and entertaining surprises at the Tailgate Party. The Penn Band and Penn Cheerleading will be there to inspire Quaker fans and student-athletes. Family Day tickets are required for lunch.

Noon: See Penn’s Women’s Field Hockey face off against Dartmouth at Vagelos Field. Admission is free with your PennCard.

1 p.m.: Root for the Quaker football team in their game against Sacred Heart at Franklin Field. Family Day tickets are required.

5 p.m.: Cheer on Penn’s Women’s Volleyball team as they compete against Yale at the Palestra. Admission is free with your PennCard.

6-7 p.m.: Skate at the Penn Ice Rink, 3130 Walnut Street. Admission is free for Penn faculty, staff, post docs and Penn family guests with your PennCard. Skate rentals are $3.

8 p.m.: Music lovers in your family can experience a virtuosic performance by Hiromi at the Annenberg Center. A pianist/composer known for her mix of jazz, classical and pop, Hiromi’s “dazzling, explosive keyboard abilities” (NPR) are guaranteed to be electrifying. Penn staff and faculty save 20% with code PENN. Learn more and buy tickets at https://annenbergcenter.org/event/hiromi-785

Visit www.hr.upenn.edu/familyday for more information or contact Human Resources at worklife@hr.upenn.edu or (215) 573-2471.

—Division of Human Resources

Update: September AT PENN

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Exhibits

17    Meme Tactics: How Artists Innovate Media to Make Underheard Voices Go Viral; opening reception: 5:15-7:30 p.m.; rm. 500, ASC (ASC). Through May 2020.

18    The Potemkin Project; an exploration of the falsification of reality in media and new frameworks for civic integrity; opening reception: 6-9 p.m.; Slought (Slought). Through October 31.

Films

24    The Neighbor Before The House (Al Jaar Qabla Al Daar); screening and discussion with filmmaker Shaina Anand; 4 p.m.; Slought (Slought).

Music

23    The Philadelphia Orchestra Musicians; string trio performance; noon; Class of 1978 Orrery Pavilion, Van Pelt Library (Libraries).

AT PENN Deadlines

The October AT PENN will be published next Tuesday. The deadline for the November AT PENN is October 14. The deadline for the weekly Update is the Monday prior to the following week’s issue.

Crimes

Weekly Crime Reports

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The University of Pennsylvania Police Department Community Crime Report

Below are the Crimes Against Persons, Crimes Against Society and Crimes Against Property from the campus report for September 2-8, 2019. View prior weeks' reports—Ed.

This summary is prepared by the Division of Public Safety and includes all criminal incidents reported and made known to the University Police Department for the dates of September 2-8, 2019. The University Police actively patrol from Market St to Baltimore and from the Schuylkill River to 43rd St in conjunction with the Philadelphia Police. In this effort to provide you with a thorough and accurate report on public safety concerns, we hope that your increased awareness will lessen the opportunity for crime. For any concerns or suggestions regarding this report, please call the Division of Public Safety at (215) 898-4482.

09/03/19 12:01 AM    3941 Irving St                Fraud charges made to credit card

09/03/19   9:49 AM    3700 Spruce St             Backpack taken from bike basket

09/03/19 10:00 AM    3400 Spruce St             Credit card taken and unauthorized charges made

09/04/19   6:11 AM    4201 Walnut St             Merchandise taken without payment

09/04/19   7:35 AM    240 S 40th St                Male cited for disorderly conduct

09/04/19   8:13 AM    3400 Spruce St             Laptop and cell phone chargers taken

09/05/19   2:12 AM    Unit Blk N 38th St         Complainant struck by unknown male

09/05/19   6:38 PM    4105 Pine St                 Vent pipe and duct tape taken from package

09/06/19   3:05 PM    3220 South St              Unknown offender punched complainant

09/06/19   7:37 PM    3925 Walnut St             Employee stole cash receipts

09/07/19   9:33 AM    231 S 34th St                Ulock secured bike stolen

09/07/19   3:27 PM    2930 Chestnut St         Money not received for purchase item

09/07/19   8:48 PM    1 S 36th St                   Complainant pushed to ground by unknown male

09/08/19   4:48 PM    4201 Walnut St            Retail theft by two males/Arrest

09/08/19   5:52 PM    3934 Spruce St           Outdoor furniture taken

09/08/19 10:10 PM    51 N 39th St                Offender struck partner

 

18th District                                                                   

Below are the Crimes Against Persons from the 18th District: 6 incidents (4 assaults, 1 aggravated assault and 1 domestic assault) was reported September 2-8, 2019 by the 18th District covering the Schuylkill River to 49th Street & Market Street to Woodland Avenue.

09/02/19   7:52 AM    3400 Spruce St             Assault

09/03/19 10:15 AM    43rd/Baltimore Ave     Assault

09/06/19   9:28 PM    3220 South St               Assault

09/07/19   8:46 PM    4703 Baltimore Ave     Aggravated Assault

09/07/19 10:54 PM    1 S 36th St                    Assault

09/08/19 12:26 AM    4504 Walnut St            Domestic Assault

Bulletins

PASEF Fall Lecture: October 10

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This year’s PASEF Fall Lecture preceding the 25-Year Celebration will focus on US-China Relations in the Current Era, featuring Avery Goldstein, David M. Knott Professor of Global Politics and International Relations. It will be held in the Class of ’49 Auditorium, 2nd floor, Houston Hall, and  is open to the campus community. For more information contact pasef@pobox.upenn.edu

Registration for 25 Year Club Celebration

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The Division of Human Resources celebrates members of the Penn community with 25 or more years of service, and invites them to attend Penn’s Annual 25-Year Club celebration on Thursday, October 10. The event will be held 5-7 p.m. in Houston Hall.

Registration is required for attendance and by invitation only. Register by Friday, September 27 at www.hr.upenn.edu/25yearclub For more information call (215) 898-3463 or email 25yearclub@hr.upenn.edu

Volunteers for Hostile Terrain 94

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The pop-up installation at Penn Museum September 25-27 will be created by hundreds of volunteers who will meet at various locations to handwrite on toe tags the identifying details of the nearly 3,200 people whose bodies have been recovered along the southern Arizona border since 2000. 

To volunteer for 30-minute sessions on September 23 & 24 sign up at https://signup.com/client/invitation2/secure/2920820/false#/invitation

For more info: https://wolfhumanities.upenn.edu/events/hostile-terrain-94-exhibition