Three Centers at Penn: Joining Forces to Tackle Urban Issues at World Urban Forum

  • January 16, 2018
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Three research centers at Penn are working together to bring Penn’s expertise on urban issues to this year’s World Urban Forum (WUF), the world’s premier conference on urban issues, to be held in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, from February 7-13.

The three centers—the Penn Institute for Urban Research (Penn IUR), the Kleinman Center for Energy Policy, and Perry World House—are publishing a white paper series in advance of the February event, staging a large exhibition of Penn research at the week-long event and sending a delegation of nearly a dozen researchers, students and staff members to Kuala Lumpur to participate.

Through these efforts, the three centers aim to showcase their research as well as the research of established and emerging Penn scholars affiliated with the centers. By joining forces to present at this year’s WUF, the centers aim to bring Penn-based scholarship that addresses pressing sustainable urbanization issues to leading policymakers and practitioners across the globe.

Penn IUR, Perry World House and the Kleinman Center for Energy Policy announced the following timeline of events related to WUF:

December 2017: Penn IUR, Perry World House and the Kleinman Center for Energy Policy commissioned PENN: Current Research on Sustainable Urban Development. The 10 papers, which will be presented on January 17, explore topics central to the implementation of the New Urban Agenda and the Sustainable Development Goals. They have a special focus on governance, energy, urban migration and integration, and planning and land use.

January 17, 2018:  In advance of the WUF, the three centers will host a one-day workshop at the Perry World House on The New Urban Agenda: How Stakeholders are Defining and Driving Implementation. The workshop will feature policymakers, practitioners and scholars in a set of panels and moderated conversations on interpretations of authority, The New Urban Agenda. This serves as a moment to release the set of white papers edited by the three centers. Topics of discussion will include the power of alliances, cities in the global south and the future of urban governance. To register:

February 3, 2018: The Penn delegation will travel to the WUF in Kuala Lumpur.

The delegation includes:

• Eugenie Birch, co-director, Penn IUR, Lawrence C. Nussdorf Professor of Urban Research and Education, department of city & regional planning, PennDesign;

• Amy Montgomery, managing director, Penn IUR;

• Cara Griffin, editor and publications director, Penn IUR;

• Mary Rocco, postdoctoral researcher, Penn IUR;

• Laura Barron, program and communications manager, Penn IUR;

• Bill Burke-White, Richard Perry Professor and Inaugural Director, Perry World House, and professor of law, Penn Law; 

• Kyung-Hwan Kim, visiting fellow, Perry World House;

• Kate Leader, program manager, Perry World House;

• Mark Alan Hughes, faculty director, Kleinman Center for Energy Policy, and professor of practice, department of city and regional planning, PennDesign;

• Cornelia Colijn, deputy director, Kleinman Center for Energy Policy;

• Mollie Simon, administrative assistant, Kleinman Center for Energy Policy.

February 7-13, 2018: The delegates will welcome visitors to the Penn exhibition booth, which will be on display at WUF in Kuala Lumpur. The exhibition includes information about Penn IUR, Perry World House and the Kleinman Center for Energy Policy and highlights each center’s initiatives. The exhibit will also feature information on the paper series that the centers have partnered to produce, and a speaker series of brief, “intimate” presentations by experts from the three centers’ extended networks.

Anne Norton:  Stacey and Henry Jackson President’s Distinguished Professor

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caption: Anne NortonAnne Norton, professor and department chair of political science, has been named the inaugural Stacey and Henry Jackson President’s Distinguished Professor of Political Science. A scholar of political theory, Dr. Norton is the author of seven books, including On the Muslim Question and 95 Theses on Politics, Culture and Method. She is Co-Founding Editor of the journal Theory and Event and on the executive board of the journal Political Theory. She also serves on the board of the Bridge Initiative of the Center for Muslim-Christian Understanding at Georgetown University. Her present work concerns problems of property and democracy. Dr. Norton taught at Notre Dame, Princeton and the University of Texas before coming to Penn in 1993.

Henry Daniel Jackson, C’86, W’86, and Stacey Jackson established this President’s Distinguished Professorship in 2016. Mr. Jackson is the co-founder, managing partner, and CEO of OpCapita LLP, a European private equity firm specializing in the retail, consumer and leisure industries. He is a member of the Penn Arts and Sciences Board of Overseers, as well as Penn’s United Kingdom Executive Leadership Committee and the Parent Leadership Committee. His wife is a singer/songwriter and the executive producer of 3B1G Records. They currently live in London and have two children who are attending Penn, Tyler, W’20 and Reid, C’18.

Dagmawi Woubshet:  Ahuja Family Presidential Associate Professor

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caption: Dagmawi WoubshetDagmawi Woubshet has joined Penn as the inaugural Ahuja Family Presidential Associate Professor of English. A scholar of African American literature and visual culture, Dr. Woubshet comes to Penn from Cornell University, where he received Cornell’s highest honor for undergraduate mentoring and teaching, the Paul  Advising Award, in 2012, as well as being named one of “The 10 Best Professors at Cornell” in 2013 by Business Insider. He is the author of the book The Calendar of Loss: Race, Sexuality, and Mourning in the Early Era of AIDS, the co-edited volume Ethiopia: Literature, Art, and Culture, a special issue of Callaloo, and many essays, interviews and book chapters. Dr.  Woubshet is currently serving as associate editor of Callaloo and previously served on the Board of Directors of the Center for LGBTQ Studies (CLAGS) at the Graduate Center, City University of New York.

The Ahuja Family Presidential Professorship was generously established in 2016 by Tania Maria Vital-Ahuja and Anilesh Ahuja, C’89, parents. Mr. Ahuja is a member of the Penn Arts and Sciences Board of Overseers and CEO, Chief Investment Officer, and Portfolio Manager of Premium Point Investments LP in New York. Ms. Vital-Ahuja is Managing Director (U.S. Operations) of Arkera and a member of the Center for Advanced Study of India’s International Advisory Board. In addition to establishing the professorship, the Ahujas generously support CASI, as well as graduate and visiting fellowships.

A Message to the Penn Community Regarding IT Security

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As you may be aware, computer security researchers recently discovered several flaws in the microprocessors of nearly all modern computers (including cell phones, tablets, etc.). This has led to two new vulnerabilities, called Meltdown and Spectre. If exploited, these vulnerabilities can result in the unauthorized disclosure of data being processed by—or stored in—your computer’s memory (e.g., passwords, personally identifiable information, etc.).

 At this time, there is no evidence of these vulnerabilities being exploited. However, applying all software patches—application and operating system—will greatly reduce the risk of your systems being affected in the future. Work with your local IT support provider for assistance; see:

 Penn is taking a number of steps to ensure that University systems and software are patched as soon as possible, that resources are available to assist you with questions or concerns and to monitor for changes in the threat level. Where possible, we will also monitor for and block attacks at the campus firewall.

 For more information on the vulnerabilities, what is being done, and how to get additional assistance, please see

If you have any questions or concerns with this, please contact ISC Information Security at

—Wendell Pritchett, Provost

—Craig Carnaroli, Executive Vice President

Matt Sessa: Executive Director of Student Registration and Financial Services

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caption: Matt SessaThe University of Pennsylvania has named Matt Sessa the executive director of student registration and financial services. His appointment will be effective January 16.

Mr. Sessa has more than 20 years of experience with federal and state financial aid programs. He comes to Penn from the Office of Federal Student Aid in the U.S. Department of Education, where he most recently served as the Deputy Chief Operating Officer and, during a transition period, the Acting Chief Operating Officer. Prior to working there, he served in senior leadership roles at the Pennsylvania Higher Education Assistance Agency.

“I am delighted to welcome Matt to Penn and look forward to working together with him to continue enhancing the wide range of services we offer our students,” said Vice President for Finance and Treasurer MaryFrances McCourt. “His vast expertise in federal aid programs and managing a complex organizational structure will make him an invaluable member of our leadership team.”

Mr. Sessa holds an executive master of business administration and a master of science in information systems from Pennsylvania State University.

As executive director of SRFS, Mr. Sessa will provide strategic and operational leadership on financial aid, billing, registration and operations. He will have a specific focus on developing a one-stop model of student service and designing comprehensive financial literacy programming for students.

Additional information about Student Registration and Financial Services is available at


Blaze Bernstein, Undergraduate

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caption: Blaze BernsteinBlaze N. Bernstein, a sophomore at the University of Pennsylvania, died earlier this month near his home in Lake Forest, California, during winter break. He was 19.

Mr. Bernstein was the incoming managing editor of Penn Appétit, the student-run food magazine. He was also a copy associate for 34th Street Magazine and Penn Review. He wrote opinion columns for the Daily Pennsylvanian. He had not declared a major, but spent his freshman year in the Vagelos Molecular Sciences Program.

He is survived by his parents, Gideon Bernstein and Jeanne Pepper, his sister, Beaue and his brother, Jay.

Donna Boyko, Residential Services

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Donna Boyko, former associate director for assignments and billing in Residential Services, died on January 7. She was 69.

She was employed by the University of Pennsylvania for more than 30 years before retiring in 2011. While at Penn, she volunteered for the Penn’s Way Campaign.

She was a graduate of Ancilla Domini class of 1966 and Gwynedd Mercy University class of 1970.

She is survived by her brother John Dellaporte, Jr.; sister Susan Weiss (Daniel); children, Christina Rose (Ronald Chang) and Todd Michael; and her grandchildren, Nathan Jia-Guo and Charlotte Rose Funing.

Geoffrey C. Hazard, Jr., Penn Law

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caption: Geoffrey Hazard

Geoffrey C. Hazard, Jr., emeritus professor of law at the University of Pennsylvania Law School, died on January 11. He was 88.

Professor Hazard served as Trustee Professor of Law at Penn Law for 15 years, from 1994 to 2009, and he was a leading figure in the fields of civil procedure, judicial administration and legal ethics. Prior to joining the faculty at Penn Law, he was a law professor at Yale, the University of Chicago and the University of California, Berkeley. In 2009, he joined the faculty of the University of California Hastings College of the Law, though he continued to regularly teach courses on advanced federal procedure at Penn Law.

“Professor Hazard was a true giant in American law,” said Ted Ruger, dean of the Law School and Bernard G. Segal Professor of Law. “In addition to making a lasting impact on the fields of civil procedure and legal ethics, he was an eminent member of the Penn Law community and the broader legal academy and a devoted teacher and mentor. He will be deeply missed.”

“Geoff Hazard was a gifted scholar, teacher, institutional leader and citizen,” said Stephen B. Burbank, David Berger Professor for the Administration of Justice. “A lawyer of immense and various talents and interests, he was as comfortable excavating the etiology of complex procedural doctrines as he was negotiating the drafting compromises necessary to achieve consensus on court rules or legislation.”

Professor Burbank added: “Geoff was a true public intellectual, a supremely effective pragmatist who preferred a life of active involvement to the leisure of the theory class. Rarely has a single lawyer achieved such distinction in so many roles, and rarely has the administration of justice had such an incisive and knowledgeable champion working for its benefit in so many ways. I was proud to have Geoff as a colleague. He will always be my mentor and friend.”

Professor Hazard coauthored leading treatises and casebooks on civil procedure and professional ethics.  His other writings spanned a broad range of topics, including civil procedure for international commercial disputes; joinder, including class actions and discovery; and legal ethics, particularly comparing the ethics practices of lawyers in modern industrialized nations.

From 1984 to 1999, he served as the director of the American Law Institute, the leading independent organization in the United States producing scholarly work to clarify, modernize, and improve the law.

“Geoff Hazard played a foundational role in the past half-century of civil procedure and legal ethics,” said Catherine Struve, Penn professor of law. “He was a beloved and revered counselor to the federal procedural rulemaking committees and the American Law Institute (having led the ALI for 15 years as its director). He was a brilliant, kind, and generous teacher, not only of law students but of his junior colleagues, including me.”

Raised in Kirkwood, Missouri, Professor Hazard graduated Phi Beta Kappa from Swarthmore College in 1953, and, in 1954, he received his LLB from Columbia University, where he served on the Columbia Law Review.

His numerous awards included the ABA Michael Franck Award in Professional Responsibility; the American Bar Foundation Research Award and William Keck Foundation Award; the Columbia Law School Association Medal for Excellence; the American Judicature Society’s Outstanding Contributions to Promoting Effective Administration of Justice; the ceremony of Salute, Superior Court of Pennsylvania; the International Insolvency Institute Gold Medal; and the ABA Robert J. Kutak Award; as well as seven honorary degrees.

 “Few lawyers in the last half century have had a more profound impact on the state of the law than Geoff Hazard,” wrote Judge Anthony Scirica in a 2010 tribute in the University of Pennsylvania Law Review. “And few have had the ability to bridge and connect the worlds of the academy, law practice, and the administration of justice. The commonweal has always been Geoff’s polestar. He is one of the law’s wise men.”

He is survived by his wife, Elizabeth; children James Gardiner Hazard, Katherine Wade Hazard, and Robin Hazard Ray, Susan Pinto, Jennifer Pinto-Martin, Douglas Pinto, Jr., Carolyn Pinto Haury, John Starrett Pinto, and Geoffrey Cornell Hazard, III; as well as grandchildren and great-grandchildren. 

A memorial service will be held at University of Pennsylvania School of Law at 11 a.m. on January 27.

Aravind Joshi, Engineering

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caption: Aravind JoshiAravind Krishna Joshi, the Henry Salvatori Professor Emeritus of Computer and Cognitive Science at the University of Pennsylvania, died on December 31. He was 88.

Dr. Joshi earned a bachelor of engineering degree from Pune University in India in 1950, a master’s degree from Penn in 1958 and a PhD from Penn in 1960. As a graduate student, Dr. Joshi was on the team led by Zellig S. Harris and Henry Hiz that created the first natural language parser in 1959.

Dr. Joshi was appointed assistant professor of electrical engineering in 1961 and received a secondary appointment in the department of linguistics in 1964. He became associate professor of electrical engineering in 1967 and then professor of electrical engineering in 1972. He became emeritus in 2012.

His research focused on the intersection of computer science and linguistics. In his early work, Dr. Joshi developed much of the mathematics of linguistic called “tree-adjoining grammars,” which have aided the analysis of human languages and led to developments in artificial intelligence and biological computation. He later worked with Lila P. Gleitman of the psychology department on interdisciplinary research projects branching psychology, linguistics and computer science, and contributed to the growth of a new academic discipline called cognitive science. In 1983, Dr. Joshi became Henry Salvatori Professor of Computer and Cognitive Sciences. In 1990, along with Dr. Gleitman, he started Penn’s Institute for Cooperative Research in Cognitive Science.

In 2001, the Aravind K. Joshi Endowed Term Assistant Professorship in Computer and Information Science was created with a gift from Silicon Valley entrepreneur and Penn alumnus Jerry Kaplan (Almanac January 16, 2001).

Dr. Joshi was the recipient of many honors and awards, including the Benjamin Franklin Medal in Computer and Cognitive Science from the Franklin Institute (Almanac April 5, 2005); the Cognitive Science Society’s David Rumelhart Prize for Contributions to the Theoretical Foundations of Human Cognition, 2003; the Association for Computational Linguistics (ACL) Lifetime Achievement Award, 2002; and the International Joint Conference on Artificial Intelligence (IJCAI) Award for Research Excellence in 1997 (Almanac April 1, 1997). He also served as ACL president in 1975.

He is survived by his wife, Susan (Heyner); daughters, Shyamala and Meera; and grandchildren, Marco and Ava. 

Contributions in his memory should be directed to The Aravind K. Joshi Professorship Fund. Checks can be mailed to Penn Engineering, Office of Development and Almuni Relations, 123 Towne Building, 220 South 33rd Street, Philadelphia, PA 19104-6391.


Faculty Senate Executive Committee Actions: Wednesday, January 10, 2018

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The following is published in accordance with the Faculty Senate Rules. Among other purposes, the publication of SEC actions is intended to stimulate discussion among the constituencies and their representatives. Please communicate your comments to Patrick Walsh, executive assistant to the Senate Office, either by telephone at (215) 898-6943 or by email at

Faculty Senate Executive Committee Actions

Wednesday, January 10, 2018

Chair’s Report.  Faculty Senate Chair Santosh Venkatesh informed SEC members that Senior Vice President and General Counsel Wendy White will visit SEC at its February meeting to answer questions from the institutional perspective on the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) ruling in December that permitted graduate students to vote on whether to unionize.

Past-Chair’s Report.  Faculty Senate Past Chair Laura Perna reported on the work of the Capital Council and the Campaign for Community, which is launching a “Campaign for Wellness” in the coming weeks.

Proposal to Extend the Senior Lecturer Term in the Graduate School of Education.  Professor Tom Sollecito, chair of the Senate Committee on Faculty and the Academic Mission (SCOF), presented SEC members with a proposal from the Graduate School of Education (GSE) to extend the appointment term for Senior Lecturers in that school from three years to five years.   SCOF reviewed the proposal and an endorsement from Provost Wendell Pritchett and voted unanimously in support of it. Following a brief discussion and a call to question, SEC members also voted unanimously in support of the proposal.

Update from the Office of the Provost.  Provost Wendell Pritchett brought four matters for discussion with SEC members: junior faculty mentoring; retention of faculty; graduate student unionization; and wellness.  He stated that the Provost’s office is exploring some additional supports for new faculty including the idea of programming that would happen in the second year, after faculty are acclimated to Penn. Such programming would focus on drawing tighter connections among faculty across schools. On the matter of graduate student unionization, the Provost informed SEC members of the details of the NLRB ruling and invited them to prepare questions for Ms. White, a guest scheduled for the February SEC meeting. He asked that faculty members encourage all graduate students to fully verse themselves on the issues around unionization at Penn in preparation to cast an informed vote. The election date has not yet been set. On the matter of student wellness, Provost Pritchett indicated that Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS) has been authorized to increase its counseling staff by five full-time-equivalents. University leadership will undertake a full review of CAPS programs (which include other wellness initiatives such as I CARE training and the Faculty Wellness Ambassadors program). The Campaign for Wellness will launch a website that collects all student wellness resources, including resources that faculty can use to assist students. He invited feedback from Penn faculty to inform those efforts.

Update on the Teach-In to be held March 18-22, 2018.  Professor Venkatesh reviewed the various events planned during the Teach-In week of March 18-22, 2018. Planners are reaching out to the Penn community, surrounding neighborhoods, city and state leadership, other nearby universities and local schools to engage them in the activities.

Faculty who instruct classes are requested to incorporate Teach-In events into class assignments to encourage engagement among the student populations. For example, some instructors might opt to require student participation at one or more Teach-In events.  Please contact the Senate office or your school dean for more specifics on this request. The Faculty Senate will be launching a website by the end of January that provides more information on the various events being convened by schools and centers across campus.

Moderated Discussion.  Because of limited time, a moderated discussion of other topics of interest to SEC members was deferred to a later meeting.


Penn Band: Marching to the Beat for 120 Years

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caption: The Penn Band performs the “Star Wars” theme song for the crowd during halftime of the football Homecoming game against Princeton on November 4, 2017.

Photo by Eric Sucar

The Penn Band, one of the first collegiate marching bands in the country, began modestly in 1897 with just 27 volunteer musicians. The Penn Band quickly became a cornerstone of school spirit at athletic and campus functions at Penn.  The Band’s first documented support of the football team was in 1898, as it greeted the team off the train after a game against the University of Chicago, and by 1900 the Band was an established part of the Franklin Field game-day experience. The Penn Band is also believed to be the first college band to travel to an away football game; that happened in 1901, when it traveled for Penn’s game at Harvard.

Today, the Band stands among one of the most active college bands in the country, performing over 100 times a year. Unlike many collegiate band programs, the Penn Band is still a volunteer organization—no scholarships, stipends or academic credits are offered to its members. Their membership comes from 30 US states and 12 countries. And more than 70% of their current members are STEM-related majors­—there is only one music major in the whole group. It is one of the largest student-run organizations on campus.

On December 18, the band celebrated its 120th anniversary.

caption: Steven Meisler, EAS’17 (left) and Jackson Betz, C’19 (right), along with their fellow bandmates, make their way to Franklin Field as part of the 2017 Homecoming festivities on November 4, 2017.

Photo by Eric Sucar

Sponsored by the Vice Provost’s Office for University Life, the Penn Band is a part of the Department of Athletics. Woven into the cultural “red and blue” fabric of Penn, the Band marks the highlights of the academic year from Convocation to Commencement and everything in between: Homecoming, Family Weekend, Alumni Weekend, football games, basketball games and other events.

On Monday nights, the Penn Band practices at the Platt Student Performing Arts House, a central hub that supports the performing arts at the University by providing a rehearsal space, a place to relax, socialize and generate innovative ideas for the next big show. They practice on Wednesday nights at Franklin Field during football season.

The organization has a rich performance history over the past 120 years. The Band was the last organization to be conducted by the great John Philip Sousa and among the first college bands to record with RCA Victor in 1926. The Penn Band was the first collegiate marching band to ever march in the Macy’s Day Parade. Past performances during the group’s storied past also include the Rose Bowl, the 1964 World’s Fair in New York, the Miss America Pageant Parade, at local schools, at the Christmas Village and the annual lighting of the Hanukkah Menorah in Center City Philadelphia, in Walt Disney World in Orlando, Florida and at festivals and parades.

For decades, the Penn Band was an all-male organization, and women were not allowed on Franklin Field—it was believed to be bad luck. In 1962, Louise Ehrlich became the first female band member to perform in the concert band. By 1968, nine women were members of the group. Despite changes seen at other universities nationwide, even female cheerleaders did not appear on the field until the late 1960s. In 1970, Lynne Leopold became the first female band member to step on Franklin Field. Shortly afterwards, women were allowed in the group, and the group’s first female president and vice-president (Peggy Schnarr and Lynne Leopold respectively) were elected in 1972. Today, women constitute more than half the membership of the organization.

The Band was also helped after the advent of the co-ed cheerleading show “The Quakerettes,” eight select women who marched with the band in parades, like the World’s Fair in 1964. That eventually led to co-ed cheerleaders later that decade.

caption: Anne Leopold Finn, FAS ’76 (at left) and her sister,  Lynne Leopold-Sharp, CW’74, G’74 (at right).

Photo from the University of Pennsylvania Band Archives

caption: The Penn Band on a football field in California in 1925.

Photos from the University of Pennsylvania Archives

caption: James DePreist

James DePreist, who earned his BS in economics in 1958, and his MA in 1961 at Penn, was also a student conductor of the Penn Band. After receiving degrees from Penn’s Wharton School and Annenberg School of Communications, Mr. DePreist went on to become a world-renowned symphony conductor, shown here (above) leading the Band at halftime. Penn awarded him an honorary doctor of humane letters degree in 1971. The internationally acclaimed maestro received Penn’s first Creative Spirit Award in recognition of his artistic leadership and life-long commitment to the arts (Almanac November 17, 2009). As the nephew of the late Marian Anderson, he led efforts to raise money to establish the Marian Anderson Music Study Center at the Library (Almanac October 27, 1998).

Benjamin Franklin’s 312th Birthday: January 17

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caption: Benjamin Franklin (1706-1790), founder and trustee of the University of Pennsylvania. Painting done c. 1775, supposedly from life, in Paris for Count St. Morys. It was given to the University of Pennsylvania in 1914 by  Joseph Beale in memory of his father,  Dr. Joseph Beale, Class of 1831.Penn has been celebrating Benjamin Franklin’s birthday for nearly a century; at Penn his birthday has always been January 17, but he was born under a different calendar system, on January 6.  That system changed in 1752 resulting in a change of 11 days in the month of January. For those who quibble, that’s explanation enough for January 17.

He is universally accepted as the founder of the University of Pennsylvania. It is fitting to take a look at his connection with Penn, America’s oldest university, as we celebrate the 312th anniversary of Franklin’s birth this month.

Franklin was a runaway who came to Philadelphia from Boston in early the 1720s to establish himself in a trade. He quickly became a printer and by 1730 was thought to be Philadelphia’s best printer. He quickly established himself not only as a master printer, but he figured out a way to distribute his printed products. He expanded his printing trade into a printing empire, controlling the distribution and sale of his printed pieces. He was a powerfully innovative thinker; his ideas came to shape the very policy and international presence of the United States. Franklin sat on the boards of several local and national institutions, ranging from the American Philosophical Society to the Pennsylvania Hospital to several fire departments.

Franklin paved the way for Penn by publishing his pamphlet, Proposals Relating to the Education of Youth in Pennsilvania [sic]  and as a result of his writings, he was able to recruit 24 prominent citizens as trustees, for a new institution of higher education. He was also successful in persuading the trustees to acquire George Whitefield’s New Building at Fourth and Arch St. (Almanac January 25, 1972)  and convert it to educational purposes. In this work, Franklin spelled out his ideas for a perfect educational institution, addressing buildings, academic life, student health and service to the broader community, among other topics.

Inspired by Franklin’s proposal, the Trustees drafted a Constitution of the Publick [sic] Academy, in the City of Philadelphia in 1749, codifying Franklin’s ideas into a concrete school charter. In 1751, Franklin’s Academy opened at Fourth and Arch Streets (above), and four years later the Academy was converted to a College with the authority to confer undergraduate and professional degrees.

No sooner than the College of Philadelphia opened in 1755 Franklin entered the international political fray. He wrote a pamphlet in 1754 advising the 13 American colonies to unify against Britain, and two years later he became a major supplier of the British Army as it marched toward the northwestern frontier and the outbreak of the Seven Years War, the first true world war. 

A Faculty of Medicine was joined in 1765, making Penn the first American colonial college to also support a professional school. The American Revolution was a turbulent time for the College of Philadelphia and not until 1791 did Penn obtain a new charter for the “University of Pennsylvania.”

Ben Franklin died in 1790 after an exceptionally prolific career in politics, journalism and science. While the original Fourth Street campus buildings, the campus Franklin knew, were demolished in the 1840s, Franklin remains the dominant character in Penn’s history and identity.

caption: A procession enters Penn’s first campus, located at 4th and Arch Streets. This is the Penn campus that existed during Benjamin Franklin’s lifetime.

caption: Additional Charter of the College, Academy, and Charity School of Philadelphia, 1755,  version printed by Benjamin Franklin,  30 x 18 cm (12 x 7.5 in).

caption: This 1958 football program shows that Franklin’s likeness had become part of Penn’s lore.

All images courtesy of the University of Pennsylvania Archives.


A Peace of My Mind

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caption: John NoltnerThe American Stories exhibit, a part of the multimedia arts project A Peace of My Mind, which explores the meaning of peace, will be on display in Houston Hall January 14-19 as part of the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Commemorative Symposium on Social Change. 

A Peace of My Mind is built around the question, “What does peace mean to you?” Founded in 2009 by award-winning Minnesota photographer John Noltner, the project began as his effort to rediscover humanity in an increasingly polarized world. With portraits and personal stories, ordinary people reveal extraordinary insights into how we can work toward common good and create a world that is more just for all.

Additional stories will be gathered from the Penn community on Wednesday, January 17 and Mr. Noltner, who founded A Peace of My Mind, will speak at the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Interfaith Program and Awards Commemoration on Thursday, January 18 at 6 p.m. in Bodek Lounge, Houston Hall.

For more information, visit

It’s A Small World at Wistar

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The Wistar Institute’s annual Nikon Small World exhibition runs from January 19 through March 2. The exhibition includes the top 20 winning images from the 2017 Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition. The opening reception will take place on Friday, January 19, 6-7:30 p.m. Register:

caption: Prostate cancer cells from Wistar Institute’s president & CEO Dario Altieri’s lab taken on the confocal. Jamie Hayden, managing director of Wistar’s Imaging Facility, received “Image of  Distinction” for this and an image of mouse skin collagen from Ashani Weeraratna’s lab.

caption: Newborn rat cochlea with sensory hair cells and spiral ganglion neurons by Michael Perney.

caption: Living volvoz algae releasing its daughter colonies by Jean-Marc Babalian.

caption: Sea cucumber skin by Christian Gautier.

Music in the Pavilion

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The Music in the Pavilion series, presented by University of Pennsylvania’s Music Department and the Kislak Center for Special Collections, Rare Books and Manuscripts, will continue with a concert by Kleine Kammermusik, playing Kleine Kammermusik: Ensemble Music from the Baroque Period. The concert will take place January 26 at 7 p.m. in the Class of 1978 Orrery Pavilion, Van Pelt-Dietrich Library.

The concert will be preceded by a short introduction at 6:15 p.m. by a Ph.D. student in musicology, Emma Barnaby. 

To register:

For more information about the group Kleine Kammermusik, visit

Update: January AT PENN

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18 Pensar l’Afrique; an exhibition and transdisciplinary program of study about African intellectual histories, curated by James Merle Thomas, Temple University; Slought; opening reception: January 18 from 6:30-8:30 p.m. Through February 14.


23 Oncogenic Ras-dependent Determinants of Tumor Fitness; Dafna Bar-Sagi, NYU Langone Medical Center; noon; Sarah and Matthew Caplan Auditorium (Wistar Institute). 

AT PENN Deadlines 

The January AT PENN calendar is now online.

The deadline for the February AT PENN calendar is today, January 16.  The deadline for the March AT PENN is February 13.


Weekly Crime Reports

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This summary is prepared by the Division of Public Safety and includes Crimes Against Persons, Crimes Against Society and Crimes Against Property reported and made known to the University Police Department between the dates of January 1-7, 2017. View prior weeks' reports. —Ed.

The University Police actively patrol from Market Street to Baltimore Avenue 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.

1/2/18      8:01 AM    3800 Spruce St.      Unsecured laptop taken

1/2/18      9:54 AM    3700 Walnut St.       Items taken from office

1/2/18     10:37 AM   420 Guardian Dr.      Scarf and sweater taken

1/2/18     11:16 AM   3744 Spruce St.       Defiant trespass/Arrest

1/2/18     1:56 PM     110 S 36th St.          Merchandise taken without payment/Arrest

1/2/18     3:06 PM     3417 Spruce St.       Unsecured bike taken

1/2/18     9:16 PM     3400 Spruce St.       Items taken from vehicle

1/3/18     1:24 PM     3000 Chestnut St.    Intoxicated male/Arrest

1/3/18     9:32 PM     3400 Spruce St.      Jacket and shoes taken

1/4/18     9:06 PM     3925 Walnut St.       Defiant trespass/Arrest

1/4/18     8:45 AM     51 N 39th St.           Assault on police officer/Arrest

1/5/18     12:11 PM   3730 Walnut St.      Hostile message left on work phone

1/5/18     9:32 PM    3025 Walnut St.       Wallet taken from unsecured purse

1/7/18     4:26 AM    4201 Walnut St.      Merchandise taken without payment

1/7/18     8:48 PM    4244 Pine St.          Unsecured bike taken

1/7/18     9:32 PM    3401 Walnut St.      Unsecured tip jar taken

18th District Report

Below are the Crimes Against Persons from the 18th District: 3 incidents (1 aggravated assault, 1 assault, 1 robbery) were reported between January 1-7, 2018 by the 18th District covering the Schuylkill River to 49th Street & Market Street to Woodland Avenue.

1/1/18      8:50 PM   S 46th and Pine St       Robbery

1/7/18      2:06 PM    3401 Civic Center Blvd Assault

1/7/18      7:57 PM    4807 Walnut St             Aggravated assault


One Step Ahead: Archiving Data for the New Year

  • January 16, 2018
  • vol 64 issue 19
  • Bulletins
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The start of the new year is a time that many people choose to start new good habits.  A good habit to start for your digital life is “tidying up” your data. One way to do this is by archiving data. You likely already know the importance of making sure you have good backups and a good backup strategy to protect your data. Archiving data is different than backing up, but is just as important. 

The purpose of a backup is to have an easily accessible copy of your current work in case of data corruption or loss. An archive is for data that is no longer in active use, but still should be retained. Data stored in an archive should be searchable and accessible but not necessarily stored in the same location as data currently in use or being actively edited.

For help archiving your data, consult with the IT organization of your school or center to see if there is a preferred archive location or plan already in place. For information on the University’s resources for both digital and physical archives, see:

The University has retention schedules for all data that must be retained for “... all University and Health System records for which there is a legal, regulatory or management retention requirement.” 

Retention schedule information can be found here:

Year of The Dog Photo Contest

  • January 16, 2018
  • vol 64 issue 19
  • Bulletins
  • print

Help the Penn Museum  call in the Year of the Dog! Submit your best dog photo in their Year of the Dog photo contest.

Until January 22 the Penn Museum welcome submissions of your best dog photo on Instagram. In the caption, include your dog’s name and its New Year’s resolution! Be sure to include @pennmuseum and #YearOfTheDog in the caption as well. They are looking for photos that are original, creative, cute, funny, or maybe something else… whatever you think makes a great dog photo!

Nine photos will be selected as finalists and announced on the Penn Museum’s Instagram on January 24. These nine photos will be put on display at the Penn Museum during the Chinese New Year Celebration on January 27, when the public will be invited to vote for their favorite photo. The votes will be counted at 3 p.m. and a winner will be announced during the event—with prizes for photographers and their dogs!

The grand prize winner will receive a one-year Penn Museum Household Membership.* 

Second place wins a $25 Gift Certificate to the Pepper Mill Café at the Penn Museum. 

Third place wins a $20 gift certificate to the Penn Museum Shop. 

And all nine finalists win a doggie goodie bag for their pooch!**

*If the grand prize winner already has an active Penn Museum Household Membership, this prize may be exchanged for a $50 gift certificate to the Penn Museum Shop. 

**Note that service dogs are the only dogs allowed inside the Museum. Entrants do not need to be present at the event to win.