News

The Mark Foundation for Cancer Research: $12 Million Funding for New Center at Penn to Study Radiation Therapy and Immune Signaling

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caption: Establishing The Mark Foundation Center at Penn, standing left to right: Kevin Mahoney, James Metz, Michele Cleary, Robert Vonderheide, Jon Epstein. Sitting l-r: Alex Knaster, Andy Minn. Photograph by Daniel Burke.

The Mark Foundation for Cancer Research announced that it has awarded a grant of $12 million to establish The Mark Foundation Center for Immunotherapy, Immune Signaling and Radiation at the University of Pennsylvania.

The Center will bring together cross-departmental teams of basic scientists and clinical researchers who will focus on better understanding the interconnected relationships between advances in radiation therapy, important signaling pathways in cancer and immune cells, and the immune system’s ability to effectively control cancer.

“The results of this exciting project could have enormous significance for cancer patients,” said The Mark Foundation CEO Michele Cleary. “This multidisciplinary effort is well positioned for success, and we expect these leading researchers will uncover novel insights into cancer biology that will substantially expand the options for treatments with better efficacy and minimal toxicities. We look forward to working with this powerhouse team over the next five years and beyond.”

The new center at the University of Pennsylvania follows in the footsteps of The Mark Foundation’s establishment last summer of The Mark Foundation Institute for Integrated Cancer Medicine at the University of Cambridge, as well as previously announced collaborations with Cancer Research UK and Evotec. These awards all derive from The Mark Foundation’s commitment to funding interdisciplinary research that shows significant promise to transform how cancer is prevented, diagnosed and treated.

The Mark Foundation Center for Immunotherapy, Immune Signaling and Radiation will be led by Andy J. Minn, associate professor of radiation oncology in Penn’s Perelman School of Medicine. The primary efforts of the center will comprise five key projects that converge on understanding the signaling pathways elicited by radiation therapy and how those pathways can be exploited therapeutically to enable the immune system to recognize and eradicate cancer.

“These projects have the chance to change the paradigm when it comes to cancer treatment,” said Dr. Minn. “Understanding important and potentially targetable mechanisms of immunotherapy resistance and how to use novel radiation therapies to enhance immunotherapies carries enormous benefits for patients.”

The Mark Foundation for Cancer Research is dedicated to accelerating cures for cancer by integrating discoveries in biology with innovative technology. Launched in 2017, The Mark Foundation pursues its mission by funding a global portfolio of groundbreaking research carried out by individual investigators, multi-investigator teams, and inter-institutional collaborations. Since its launch in 2017, the Foundation has awarded over $57 million in grant funding to 70 institutions across 18 US states and three countries.

Recognizing the obstacles that can prevent scientific advances from improving patient outcomes, The Mark Foundation maintains a nimble, high-impact approach to funding research that encompasses grants for basic and translational cancer research, as well as venture philanthropy investment in companies that bridge the gap between the bench and the bedside. To learn more about the work of The Mark Foundation for Cancer Research, visit https://themarkfoundation.org/

Major Expansion of Gene Therapy Collaboration Between Amicus Therapeutics and Penn

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Amicus Therapeutics and the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania announced a major expansion to their collaboration with rights to pursue collaborative research and development of novel gene therapies for lysosomal disorders (LDs) and 12 additional rare diseases. The collaboration has been expanded from three to six programs for rare genetic diseases and now includes: Pompe disease, Fabry disease, CDKL5 deficiency disorder (CDD), Niemann-Pick Type C (NPC), next generation Mucopolysaccharidosis Type IIIA (MPS IIIA), and Mucopolysaccharidosis Type IIIB (MPS IIIB), both also known as part of Sanfillipo syndrome. In addition to these three new programs, a discovery research agreement provides Amicus with exclusive disease-specific access to option rights to collaborate with Penn’s Gene Therapy Program (GTP) to develop potentially disruptive new gene therapy platform technologies and programs for the majority of lysosomal disorders and 12 additional rare diseases.

John F. Crowley, chairman and chief executive officer of Amicus stated, “The extension of our collaboration with Penn is a bold step forward in our commitment to create potential cures that may alleviate an enormous amount of suffering for countless numbers of people in the world living with rare diseases, many of them children. Together with Penn we are now able to focus on additional lysosomal disorders, as well as several more prevalent rare diseases for which we can apply our understanding of underlying disease biology in rare metabolic disease, Amicus’ protein-engineering and development expertise and the world renowned capabilities of Dr. Jim Wilson’s laboratory to develop novel gene therapy candidates. With a globally approved precision medicine product for Fabry, a late-stage biologic product with breakthrough therapy designation for Pompe, and now the industry’s largest rare disease gene therapy pipeline, Amicus is well-positioned to become a leading global biotechnology company at the forefront of human genomic medicine.”

Building off the initial success of the ongoing Amicus-Penn collaboration, including compelling initial preclinical proof-of-concept data in Pompe disease, this expanded relationship will continue to combine Amicus’ protein engineering and glycobiology expertise with Penn’s gene transfer technologies to develop novel gene therapies designed for optimal cellular uptake, targeting, dosing, safety and manufacturability.

“This agreement is a significant step forward in creating a world class industry-academia gene therapy partnership in rare diseases,” said Dr. Wilson, professor of medicine and pediatrics at the Perelman School of Medicine. “We have already seen highly encouraging preclinical results and proof-of-concept in Pompe disease through our existing collaboration and are excited by what we can further achieve together. We are looking forward to expanding the relationship further for additional preclinical programs and committing to the research required to further advance the technology platforms at Penn. We have seen the first results of our combined capabilities and platforms and I believe that we can further expand and accelerate our efforts to rapidly develop gene therapies for many more patients with unmet needs.” 

“Penn Medicine has put Philadelphia on the map as the global epicenter of gene therapy research and development, and under the leadership and vision of Jim Wilson, our expanded agreement with Amicus is an exciting milestone for a field which is in the midst of transformative breakthroughs,” said J. Larry Jameson, executive vice president of the University of Pennsylvania for the Health System and Dean of the Perelman School of Medicine. “We are thrilled to be part of this collaboration, which will help to bolster our city’s growing reputation as a magnet for talent and an engine for gene therapy innovation.”

Editor’s Note: As an inventor of technology licensed or optioned to Amicus pursuant to this Gene Therapy Collaboration, Dr. Wilson and Penn may receive additional financial benefits under the license in the future.

Government Affairs Update

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PA State Budget Signed

On Friday, June 28, Governor Tom Wolf signed the General Fund Appropriations Bill (House Bill 790) into law, approving a state general fund budget of nearly $34 billion for fiscal year 2019-2020. The spending plan represents a nearly 2% increase, or $596 million, over 2018-2019 while imposing no new taxes. Governor Wolf also signed House Bill 1354, approving the School of Veterinary Medicine non-preferred appropriation at nearly $32 million—a 2% increase over the prior year. Additionally, support for the state’s Animal Health and Diagnostic Commission earned a $2 million increase—the first increase in six years. This funding supports New Bolton Center’s animal health lab, which is one of three such labs in a statewide system built to test for and diagnose diseases that threaten animal and public health, the state’s food supply, and major animal agricultural industries.

Funding to the Commonwealth Universal Research Enhancement Program, or CURE, will be held level at $51.3 million for the 2019-2020 fiscal year. Penn has leveraged CURE funding to advance new treatments for tobacco addiction and smoking cessation, while also developing in collaboration with the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia revolutionary treatments using Chimeric Antigen Receptor T cells that attack and kill cancer cells. Penn receives approximately $6 million of CURE funding each year.

New Staff at OGCA

The Office of Government and Community Affairs welcomed three new staff members over the previous academic year.

In May 2018, Jamie Spagna joined the office as OGCA coordinator. She has worked in state and local government for two decades, serving as a staffer in the state Senate; the City of Philadelphia, including the Mayor’s Office; and the School District of Philadelphia. 

Cassie Tomkins was named associate director of OGCA in June 2018. Previously, she worked as an assistant director for the Fels Institute of Government, and she completed her master’s degree in public administration from Penn in May.

Michael Smith assumed the role of director of Commonwealth Relations in November 2018. He has served in senior-level positions with the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania since 2005, developing strong relationships with agencies under the Governor’s jurisdiction and General Assembly. Prior to joining Penn, Mr. Smith was executive deputy secretary of the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture, where he worked closely with the leadership of Penn Vet.

—Jeffrey Cooper, Vice President, Government and Community Affairs

Wharton Dean Geoffrey Garrett: Becoming Dean of USC School of Business

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Penn President Amy Gutmann and Provost Wendell Pritchett announced that Wharton Dean Geoffrey Garrett will be leaving Penn at the end of the 2019-2020 academic year to become Dean of the University of Southern California Marshall School of Business in Los Angeles, effective July 1, 2020.

“Geoff has done an absolutely superb job in leading Wharton for the past five years and in helping firmly establish Wharton as the world’s leading business school,” said President Gutmann. “In partnership with Wharton’s incredible community of faculty, staff, students, alumni and friends, he has expanded the Wharton standing faculty to more than 240 members and increased its breadth, depth, diversity and eminence.

“Geoff’s career has been truly international in scope, and under his leadership the Wharton footprint continues to grow in Philadelphia and around the world. Wharton’s volunteer leadership and alumni are engaged as never before, and their unprecedented support has fueled the School’s continued ascent. We are committed to sustaining Wharton’s extraordinary momentum of the past five years throughout our Power of Penn campaign and far into the future.”   

During Dean Garrett’s tenure, Wharton’s reach has grown, spanning the nation and the world with record enrollments in the MBA Program for Executives in San Francisco and robust and growing offerings, including extensive Executive Education programming, the Wharton Global Forum and the launch of the Penn Wharton China Center in Beijing.

Online education has grown exponentially, including online preparation classes for incoming MBA first-year students and online specializations for business professionals in fields from leadership and management to business analytics and fintech. Hundreds of thousands of digital learners from around the world have accessed Wharton MOOCs.

Innovative programs such as the Penn Wharton Budget Model, Behavior Change for Good, the Stevens Center for Innovation in Finance, the Harris Alternative Investments Program and the Analytics Initiative are helping Wharton do pioneering work in novel ways, reach more communities, and have more global impact than ever before.

On campus, a new Wharton Academic Research Building is under construction, Tangen Hall and its associated Venture Lab, is set to transform Penn student opportunities in entrepreneurship, and renovations to Vance Hall, Lauder Hall and other Wharton facilities are providing faculty and students with the best and most cutting-edge facilities.

“Under Geoff’s leadership, the student body is now more accomplished, diverse and better supported than at any point in Wharton’s storied history,” Provost Pritchett said. “A revamped undergraduate curriculum has brought a renewed school-wide focus on experiential learning and teaching excellence. Dual-degree programs and cross-school partnerships have expanded in high-priority areas including global business and society, health-care leadership, management and delivery, integrated product design, business and law, and data science and information technology.”

Prior to becoming Dean of Wharton, Dean Garrett served on the faculty at Wharton, then became dean of the UCLA International Institute. He then returned to his native Australia, where he served as dean at both the University of Sydney and the University of New South Wales, returning to Penn as Dean in 2014.

In preparation for Dean Garrett’s departure from Penn, the University will initiate the process of forming a committee of faculty, students and alumni to advise on the selection of the next dean of the Wharton School. Penn Medicine EVP/Dean J. Larry Jameson has agreed to chair the committee.

Diana C. Robertson: Vice Dean and Director of the Wharton Undergraduate Division

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caption: Diana RobertsonWharton Dean Geoffrey Garrett has announced the appointment of Diana C. Robertson, the Samuel A. Blank Professor of Legal Studies and Business Ethics, as vice dean and Director of the Wharton Undergraduate Division; it was effective July 1. 

Since arriving on the University of Pennsylvania in 2007, Dr. Robertson has been recognized for outstanding instruction of Wharton undergraduate students, earning seven teaching awards. Known for her interdisciplinary research on individual and organizational business ethics, Dr. Robertson incorporates perspectives from neuroscience, psychology, sociology and organizational behavior into her work. She is a co-editor of Thinking about Bribery: Neuroscience, Moral Cognition, and the Psychology of Bribery, published by Cambridge University Press.

“Diana Robertson is a highly respected researcher with a sterling reputation among the many Wharton undergraduate students and alumni fortunate enough to have joined her classroom,” said Dean Garrett. “I am grateful to vice dean Lori Rosenkopf for the innovation she brought to the undergraduate program and look forward to continued success with Diana Robertson at the helm.”

Before coming to Wharton, Dr. Robertson served on the faculties of London Business School and Goizueta Business School at Emory University. She was also a visiting professor at the London School of Economics. She received her BA from Northwestern University and her PhD from UCLA. 

In addition to her teaching awards, Dr. Robertson has published an extensive set of refereed articles and book chapters, while winning numerous research awards. In 2007, she won the top research award at Emory. She is the faculty doctoral coordinator for Wharton’s legal studies and business ethics department. In 2018, she was named one of the Top 50 Undergraduate Business School Professors by Poets and Quants.

Dr. Robertson succeeds vice dean Lori Rosenkopf, who, having served two three-year terms, will return to the management department as the Simon and Midge Palley Professor.

During her tenure, vice dean Rosenkopf developed and implemented a new curriculum for Wharton undergraduate students and created the Wharton Industry Exploration Program in which students learn about the tech, entertainment and other industries on location while earning academic credit. She also led several important diversity and inclusion initiatives, including an orientation program for incoming Wharton students called the Successful Transition and Empowerment Program (STEP), and a multiyear program to increase STEM proficiency among disadvantaged Philadelphia high school students called the Summer Math and Science Honors Academy (SMASH).

Nancy Zhang: Vice Dean of Wharton Doctoral Programs

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caption: Nancy ZhangWharton Dean Geoffrey Garrett has announced the appointment of professor of statistics Nancy Zhang as the vice dean of Wharton Doctoral Programs (WDP); it was  effective July 1. In her new role, Dr. Zhang oversees the operations and management of the nine academic areas of WDP.

Among her many accomplishments since arriving at the University of Pennsylvania in 2011, Dr. Zhang served as doctoral program co-director for the Wharton statistics department from 2012-2017. She has been an important advisor and mentor for students in statistics, as well as in other departments, including genomics and computational biology; biostatistics, epidemiology and informatics; and applied mathematics and computational sciences.

“I’m very pleased that Nancy Zhang will join us as the doctoral programs’ leader. She represents the best of Wharton’s research capabilities while, through her highly collaborative approach, serving as a role model for students,” said Dean Garrett. “I am grateful to vice dean Cathy Schrand for her dedication to the doctoral program and look forward to continued success with Nancy Zhang.”

Dr. Zhang’s research focuses primarily on statistical and computational approaches for the analysis of genetic, genomic and transcriptomic data. In addition to her contributions in statistics, her methods have made contributions to genetics, tumor genomics and single-cell biology.

In the field of genomics, she has developed methods to improve the accuracy of copy number variant and structural variant detection, methods for improved false discovery rate control, and methods for analysis of single-cell RNA sequencing data. In the field of statistics, she has developed new models and methods for change-point analysis, variable selection, and model selection. Dr.  Zhang has also made contributions in the area of tumor genomics, where she has developed analysis methods to improve understanding of intra-tumor clonal heterogeneity.

Dr. Zhang earned her undergraduate degree in mathematics, her master’s in computer science and her doctorate in statistics from Stanford. In 2011, she was the recipient of a prestigious Sloan Fellowship. Prior to arriving at Wharton, Dr. Zhang was an assistant professor of statistics at Stanford and a post-doctoral fellow at the University of California, Berkeley.

Dr. Zhang succeeds Cathy Schrand, who will return to the accounting department as the Celia Z. Moh Professor. Dr. Schrand will continue her role as faculty director of the Wharton Research and Scholars programs.

During her tenure, Dr. Schrand upgraded the writing and communications offerings for doctoral students and encouraged cross-disciplinary engagement among students. She updated the statistics sequence and expanded offerings for applied courses. Dr. Schrand also oversaw outstanding placements for WDP graduates, including faculty positions at the University of Chicago, MIT, Stanford and Yale.

Under Dr. Schrand’s leadership, WDP also advanced diversity initiatives and enrollments of diverse students at WDP increased significantly. At the same time, WDP’s program for undergraduates, Introduction to Diversity in Doctoral Education and Scholarship (IDDEAS), expanded to Stanford, Berkeley, the University of Chicago and Northwestern University.

PASEF: The Penn Association of Senior and Emeritus Faculty Annual Report AY 2019

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Now in its 15th year, the Penn Association of Senior and Emeritus Faculty (PASEF) strives to organize programs and activities for its Members, encourage them to continue to remain active in the intellectual and social life of the University, and promote opportunities for  Members to render service to the University and the larger community. Major foci include assisting senior faculty in their transition to retirement; organizing lectures, excursions, and other social and intellectual events; and providing volunteer opportunities for Members. Encompassing both Standing Faculty in emeritus status and senior standing faculty age 55 and above, PASEF currently has 1,689 Members; 1,121 of these are senior faculty. This reflects both the growing tsunami of aging baby boomers as well as the greater longevity now enjoyed by our retirees. It also poses challenges in developing programs and services that suit the interests and needs of Members from age 55 to 100+. A sampling of our activities is described below.

Retirement Planning

Most highly subscribed of PASEF’s programs remains the series aimed at helping senior faculty plan mindfully for their own retirement. Given the importance of this life event to health and well-being, PASEF focuses not just on the financial implications, but also on the personal meanings and choices about what comes next in one’s life trajectory.  PASEF’s program series—Planning for Retirement—was enhanced this year by a new panel discussion Exploring Living Options in Retirement: The Continuing Care Retirement Community (November 28). Retirees living in different CCRCs spoke candidly about their decisions and transitions, and PASEF prepared and distributed a resource to assist interested Members to further explore this option. We continued our well-honed panel discussion by Members in various stages of their own retirement process, Negotiating the Retirement Transition: What’s Next? (February 27) and the program Nuts and Bolts of Faculty Retirement (March 27) on Penn’s choices, benefits & processes. Attendance ranged from 37 to 65 across the series. We also encouraged Members to attend Human Resources’ sessions on Medicare and Social Security in May. Our highly regarded publication, The Hitchhiker’s Guide to Faculty Retirement (12th ed.), is available on our website. As further outreach, the Steering Committee met with School Deans/Department Chairs to apprise them of PASEF’s resources for their faculty. We consulted with Penn’s Department of Human Resources regarding messaging a change in health benefits management, and we advocated for individual faculty experiencing system challenges. Finally, this year’s Celebration for New Retirees (sponsored jointly by ASEF –PSOM and PASEF) feted 45 Members on May 8 in  the Jordan Medical Education Center Atrium, with remarks by Vice Provost for Faculty Anita Allen and background music by past president Roger Allen.

Intellectual & Social Events

Our Program Committee, chaired by Paul Shaman, organized several events this year (see Table 2). The Fall and Spring Distinguished Lectures were given by Craig Carnaroli (Innovation at Penn on October 4, preceding the 25-Year Club Reception in Houston Hall) and Jane Eisner (What Does the Surge of Anti-Semitism in America Really Mean? on May 2 in Bodek Lounge, Houston Hall). Monthly luncheon lectures at the University Club spanned Vincent Feldman’s Ours to Lose: Places in West Philadelphia at Risk of Being Forgotten, Dick Polman’s Review of the Midterm Elections, Stephen Senturia’s Anatomy of a Tenure Case, and Nancy Hodgson’s Better Living with Dementia. (See PASEF website for videos.) The Library Committee (Ann Mayer, chair) hosted two additional lectures, one a panel discussion on Contemporary Issues in Scientific Publishing with Lewis Kaplan, Darren Taichman, Richard James and Brigitte Burris and the other Becoming Penn by co-author John Puckett. Two outings, co-sponsored by PASEF and ASEF, took members to The National Constitution Center (October 24) and to the Academy of Vocal Arts (April 10), the latter especially well-subscribed. The Membership Committee, with Anita Summers as chair, continued its outreach and organizing efforts to better meet needs and interests, especially of senior Members, and to promote social connections. Members were enabled to continue free access to rehearsals of the Philadelphia Orchestra, and a theatre option with discussion or back stage tour is planned for Fall 2019. Meanwhile, an opportunity for Members to mentor international graduate students is in exploration. In March, we formally inaugurated  PASEF’s Lounge, a small furnished room in Duhring Wing available to Members for small group  meetings or sessions with mentees or colleagues; Vice Provost Allen was instrumental in securing and furnishing this space for us, and we borrowed art work from University Collections.

Volunteer Service

PASEF’s newly launched Community Involvement Committee (Jorge Santiago-Aviles and Gino Segrè, Co-Chairs) explored volunteer opportunities in affiliated West Philadelphia schools & libraries through the Netter Center and, with the Penn Center for Innovation Ventures and the Office for Global Initiatives, identified and publicized opportunities on Penn’s Campus. Council Members continue to represent PASEF on the Senate Executive Committee and its standing committees as well as the University Council Committee on Personnel Benefits, bringing historical and experiential wisdom to these agendas. PASEF is also represented on an ad hoc committee exploring the feasibility of a University-affiliated continuing care retirement community near the campus. PASEF’s 28-member Speakers Bureau (led by Roger Allen), a service now in its 3rd year, provided 18 lectures to Philadelphia-area organizations, including CCRCs, Rotary Clubs, Public Libraries and senior residences. Finally, Council agreed to sunset the Library Committee and to inaugurate in Fall 2019 the PASEF Library Liaison role to keep retired Members connected and informed about library services and advise the library on Member access or service needs.

Organization

PASEF’s 17-Member Council (See Table 1), led by a three-member Steering Committee, is broadly representative of the campus, meets monthly and populates its various committees and liaisons previously described.  PASEF is a member of the Association of Retirement Organizations in Higher Education (AROHE) and two Members, together with ASEF-PSOM leaders, attended its fall biennial conference. Challenges addressed this year included establishing clarity in committee roles and responsibilities, facilitating replacements for two early resignations (via Nominating Committee, Marc Dichter, chair), initiating new initiatives together with an already full agenda and without additional human resources, and significant delays in launching the new website (part of the Provost Office suite). In AY2020, we will initiate a process for archiving PASEF’s important materials, increase the frequency of brief communications with Members, and launch our new Website to provide timely access to PASEF’s resources. With support from Vice Provost Allen, we engaged a consultant to facilitate a very successful half-day strategic planning retreat in June. These efforts will help us prioritize and move to the next phase of organizational development, enabling PASEF to even better meet the needs of Members. We remain grateful for the intellectual, collegial and financial support received from Vice Provost Allen, for the able management of multiple assignments by Sarah Barr, part-time administrative coordinator, and for the consultative support of Jillian Powell in the Provost’s Office. Personally, I thank the PASEF Steering Committee and Council and our ASEF-PSOM colleagues for their support, guidance and collaboration. I look forward to what our 16th year will bring!

For information, contact: pasef@pobox.upenn.edu (215) 746-5972   http://www.upenn.edu/emeritus/

—Lois K. Evans, PASEF President 2018-2019

Table 1. PASEF Council Membership 2018-2019

Roger M.A. Allen, SAS (Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations), Past President, Chair of Speakers Bureau

David P. Balamuth, SAS (Physics & Astronomy), Representative to University Council Committee on Personnel Benefits

Joretha Bourjolly, Social Policy & Practice, At-large member of Council

Janet Deatrick, Nursing (Family & Community Health), At-large member of Council, Co-Editor of The Hitchhiker’s Guide to Faculty Retirement

Marc A. Dichter, Medicine (Neurology), At-large member of Council, Chair of Nominating Committee

Lois K. Evans, Nursing (Family & Community Health), President, Chair of Steering Committee

James Ferguson, Veterinary Medicine (Clinical Studies-New Bolton Center), President-Elect (until February)

Joel H. Greenberg, Medicine (Neurology), President, ASEF –PSOM

Howard I. Hurtig, Medicine, At-Large member of Council (elected October)

John C. Keene, Design (City and Regional Planning), At-large member of Council, Representative to Senate Committee on Faculty Development, Diversity & Equity

Walter Licht, SAS (History), At-large member of Council (until September)

Ann Mayer, Wharton (Legal Studies & Business Ethics), At-large member of Council, Chair of Library Committee

Marshall W. Meyer, Wharton (Management), Representative to Senate Committee on Faculty and the Administration

Martin Pring, Medicine (Physiology), At-large member of Council, Representative to Senate Executive Committee, Senior Editor of The Hitchhiker’s Guide to Faculty Retirement

Jorge J. Santiago-Aviles, SEAS (Electrical and Systems Engineering), At-large member of Council, Co-Chair Community Involvement Committee

Gino C. Segrè, SAS (Physics & Astronomy), At-large member of Council, Representative to Senate Committee on Faculty and the Academic Mission, Co-Chair Community Involvement Committee

Paul Shaman, Wharton (Statistics), Secretary, Chair of Program Committee, President-elect(elected April)

Anita A. Summers, Wharton (Business Economics and Public Policy), Representative to Senate Committee on Students and Educational Policy (SCSEP), Representative to Retirement Community Committee, Chair of Membership Committee

Former Presidents: Benjamin Shen, Gerald Porter, Neville Strumpf, Vivian Seltzer, Roger Allen, Ross Webber, Rob Roy MacGregor, Jack Nagel, Anita Summers, Paul Shaman

The University of Pennsylvania Update to the 2018 Annual Security & Fire Safety Report (Statistics for 2015, 2016 and 2017)

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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.

The University’s new Sexual Misconduct Policy, Resource Offices and Complaint Procedures that went into effect on July 1, 2019, have been added to the 2018 Annual Security Report.

To review the University’s updated 2018 annual report containing this information, please visit: https://www.publicsafety.upenn.edu/ASR/2018_ASR_PENN_2.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

Deaths

Carl Brighton, PSOM

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Carl T. Brighton, emeritus professor of orthopaedic surgery in the Perelman School of Medicine at Penn, died July 3. He was 87.

Dr. Brighton earned his bachelor’s degree from Valparaiso University in 1953, and he graduated from Penn’s School of Medicine in 1957. Starting in 1954 he also worked as an assistant in physiology. He went on to receive his PhD in anatomy from the University of Illinois in 1969. He did his residency at the US Naval Hospital in Philadelphia and also was a veteran of the Vietnam War.

In 1968 he returned to Penn, where he became an assistant professor in orthopaedic surgery, and he earned full professorship in 1973. A few years later, he was appointed chair of the department and became the Paul B. Magnuson Professor of Bone and Joint Surgery, holding both appointments until 1993. Dr. Brighton was a pioneer in using electricity to stimulate bone growth.

According to Penn Medicine’s website, in his role as chair, Dr. Brighton immediately established the importance of basic research. He developed an interdepartmental research enterprise that was “the envy of every department in the country.” He also was responsible for the development of subspecialty services at Penn. The orthopaedic residents at Penn participated in basic investigations and received a “bedside” education in clinical orthopaedic surgery. This tradition of a preceptorship in the office, operating room and ward, in addition to emphasis upon the basic aspects of pathophysiology at the cellular and molecular levels, continues to characterize educational pursuits at Penn today.

Dr. Brighton held a secondary appointment as a professor of bioengineering and also served on the Senate Advisory Committee. While at Penn, Dr. Brighton received the Kappa Delta Award of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons in 1974 and served as president-elect of the Orthopedic Research Society in 1976. In 1988, he was given a MERIT Award from the NIH. He was editor-in-chief of the journal Clinical Orthopaedics and Related Research 1993-2002 and was visiting professor at 36 universities and medical schools. He published over 200 articles in medical journals and obtained 29 patents. He retired in 1996 and earned emeritus status in 1997.

Dr. Brighton is survived by his wife, Ruth Louise; children, David (Marcia), Sue Terrell (Thomas), Andrew (Trisha), Joel (Jo Ann); grandchildren, Michelle, Emily, Jonathan, Benjamin, Elizabeth, Jenny, Ellie, Luke, Rachel, Lydia, Miriam, Abigail, Casey, Carl John, Micah and Zachary; and five great-grandchildren.

Denis Drummond, PSOM and CHOP

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caption: Denis DrummondDenis S. Drummond, emeritus professor of orthopaedic surgery in the Perelman School of Medicine and former chief of orthopedics at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, died June 18 of heart failure. He was 84.

Dr. Drummond was born in Montreal. He earned his BA in 1957 from McGill University and his medical degree from the McGill University Medical School in 1962. He completed advanced training in orthopedic surgery in 1968 at the University of Toronto.

From 1970-1977, Dr. Drummond served as an assistant professor at McGill’s medical school and was also an attending surgeon at Shriners Hospital for Children, Montreal. He spent seven years as director of pediatric orthopedics at the University of Wisconsin before joining CHOP, where he served as chief of orthopaedics 1985-1996. In 1985 he also joined the faculty at Penn’s Perelman School of Medicine. He retired early, in 2004, and earned emeritus status from PSOM at that time. He earned emeritus status from CHOP in 2012.

He was known as a skilled surgeon, with a particular interest in spine deformity and pediatric cervical spine anomalies and injuries. His pediatric spine thought-leadership was widely recognized and included both implant design (he was co-holder of six patents), surgical technique improvement and outcomes research. He published more than 180 original research studies and 42 chapters. He was legendary for his mentoring of young orthopaedic scholars, vetting ideas and very frankly critiquing project ideas, results and manuscripts. He was a six-time winner of teaching awards (Nicholson Award or Dean’s Award) at Penn/CHOP. His passion for teaching and mentoring young surgeons is honored each year with CHOP’s annual Denis Drummond Rising Star Visiting Professorship, which was initiated in 2016.

In a tribute to Dr. Drummond, Jack Flynn, a professor of orthopaedic surgery at CHOP, and John Dormans, an emeritus professor in the department of orthopaedic surgery at CHOP, wrote: “Denis’s signature legacy at CHOP was initiating the transformation of the Orthopaedics Division from a small group of clinicians into the internationally recognized, academic thought-leader powerhouse that it is today.“

Dr. Drummond helped create the Pediatric Orthopaedic Society of North America (POSNA). He served as president of the Pediatric Orthopaedic Study Group and chair of the Merger Committee of Pediatric Orthopaedic Study Group and the Pediatric Orthopaedic Society that navigated the merger process leading to the birth of POSNA. He was also a leader in the Scoliosis Research Society, serving on the SRS Board of Directors for 10 years, including president 2001-2002. He was the co-recipient of the SRS Hibbs Award for best paper (2006) and the SRS Lifetime Achievement Award (2011).

Dr. Drummond is survived by his wife, Joan; sons, Jim (Anna), Keith (Ellen), Bruce (Lisa) and Terry (Chella); and grandchildren, Ian, Brenna, Luke, Zoe, Grace, Ben, Sara, Julia, Georgia and Charlie.

Richard Ellis, PSOM

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Richard Ellis, former Perelman School of Medicine assistant professor of ophthalmology, died June 2 of respiratory failure. He was 94.

Dr. Ellis graduated from Overbrook High School and St. Joseph’s College before earning his medical degree from Thomas Jefferson Medical School in 1949. After his residency at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, he spent four months performing cataract surgery for the disadvantaged in India and Pakistan. In 1949 he married Gilda Rand Mann, daughter of Fredric R. Mann for whom Philadelphia’s Mann Center is named.

From the mid-1950s until his retirement in 1999, he practiced ophthalmology in Center City and Bala Cynwyd, and he performed surgery at Wills Eye Hospital. He taught ophthalmology at PSOM 1961-1966, first as an associate professor and then as an assistant professor. He also did research relating to examination of the eye, which was published in the Journal of Workplace Health and Safety in 1964.

Dr. Ellis is survived by his wife, Gilda; daughters, Jane, Eve, Marsha, and Susan; and three grandchildren.

Sherman Frankel, Physics

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Sherman Frankel, emeritus professor of physics at the University of Pennsylvania, died May 30. He was 96.

Dr. Frankel earned his BA from Brooklyn College in 1943. From 1943 to 1946, he was a staff member at the MIT Radiation Laboratory, and then he earned his PhD from the University of Illinois at Urbana Champagne in 1949.

He joined the faculty at Penn in 1950 as an instructor in the physics department. Over the next decade, Dr. Frankel was promoted multiple times, reaching professor status in 1960. His work dealt with color transparency and nuclear transparency in nuclei and searches for the quark-gluon plasma; problems relating to magnetic monopoles and their connection with astrophysics and particle physics experiments; and physics and public policy, publishing articles on missile defense and new smart decoys. He studied efficacy and safety of new medical drugs and procedures and had an fMRI-cognitive test research program relating to distinguishing between aging and dementia, as well as a Penn collaboration, placing cognitive tests on the web.

He was a John Simon Guggenheim Fellow in 1956 and in 1978. He won University Research Foundation Awards multiple years and also won National Science Foundation funding. He went on leave in 1974 to perform research at CERN (The European Organization for Nuclear Research). Dr. Frankel also served on the University Senate Committee, the Committee on Research, the Committee on Administration and the Committee on Overhead.

Outside of Penn, Dr. Frankel was the principal investigator for the federally-funded high-energy physics Atomic Energy Commission (AEC) research contract, which maintained the Princeton-Pennsylvania Accelerator (PPA) in the 1960s and early 1970s. He also served as associate editor for the Review of Scientific Instruments; guest scientist at the Niels Bohr Institute; guest fellow at the Stanford C.I.S.A.C.; senior fellow for the MIT Security Studies Program; visiting bioengineering professor at the University of California, Berkeley; and guest physicist at the Lawrence Radiation Laboratory in Berkeley.

He retired from Penn in 1993 and earned emeritus status at that time. Dr. Frankel is survived by his wife, Ruzena Bajcsy, professor emeritus of computer science and engineering; his son, Walter; his stepchildren Peter Bajcsy and Klara Narstedt; and his longtime friend and caregiver Patricia Stewart.

Don Graham, English

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Don Graham, former assistant professor of English at Penn, died June 22 after a stroke. He was 79.

Dr. Graham was born on a cotton farm near Lucas, Texas. He earned his BA and MA degrees in English from North Texas State University (now the University of North Texas) and then earned his PhD in American literature from the University of Texas–Austin in 1971.

After graduating, he was hired as an assistant professor of English at the University of Pennsylvania. While at Penn he also taught a course on Western films, taught in CGS (now LPS) and served on the University Council’s Research Committee. In an interview with Texas Monthly magazine, Vartan Gregorian Professor of English Peter Conn, who was a friend and colleague of Dr. Graham’s at the time, said, “For several years, Don hosted a bibulously uproarious Super Bowl party that became the must-go annual event for our otherwise rather mild-mannered faculty.”

In 1976, Dr. Graham returned to UT, becoming the J. Frank Dobie Regents Professor of American and English Literature. He was also a writer-at-large for Texas Monthly and considered a top scholar of the state’s literature, film and pop culture. He is survived by his wife, Betsy Berry.

John B. Neff, Emeritus Trustee

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caption: John NeffJohn B. Neff (Hon’84), emeritus trustee who grew the University of Pennsylvania’s endowment from $200 million to $3 billion, died June 4 after an illness. He was 87.

Mr. Neff was born in Ohio. He was an aviation electronics technician in the US Navy during the Korean War, then earned a BBA in industrial marketing from the University of Toledo (the finance department now bears his name) under the GI Bill, graduating in 1955 summa cum laude. He then attended Case Western Reserve University in the evenings, earning his  MBA in banking and finance in 1958, while working as a securities analyst for the National City Bank of Cleveland.

He became senior vice president and managing partner of Wellington Management Company and was a member of its Executive Committee. He built a reputation for value investing and served as the legendary portfolio manager of the Vanguard Group’s Windsor Fund, which under his stewardship outperformed the market 21 out of 31 years. He was a director of Crown Holdings Inc., Chrysler Corporation, General Accident Insurance, Greenwich Associates, Amkor Technology, and Invemed Catalyst Fund. He wrote John Neff on Investing, was a member and former Trustee of the Chartered Financial Analysts Federation, and a member and past President of Financial Analysts of Philadelphia.

Mr. Neff joined Penn’s Board of Trustees in 1980, when he became chair of the Investment Board. At this time, when Penn’s endowment performance ranked among the lowest in the country, then-President Martin Meyerson and Board Chair Paul Miller asked Mr. Neff to manage it. Under his 18-year leadership, the endowment outperformed the market by a wide margin. At his tenure’s end, it had grown from $200 million to $3 billion. He did this for no more than a University parking permit.

Mr. Neff also served on the Executive and Audit & Compliance committees. He was a popular lecturer at Wharton and served on the Advisory Board of Wharton’s Weiss Center for International Financial Research. He was a generous supporter of the Penn Museum and established the John and Lillian Neff Endowed Scholarship. In recognition of his tremendous service, the University established the John B. Neff Endowed Professorship at Wharton in his honor. 

Mr. Neff was a leading benefactor of the Philadelphia Scholars Fund, for which he received Philadelphia Education Fund’s inaugural Giving Forward Award. He was a Trustee of Case Western Reserve, as well as a Governor of the Research Foundation of the Association for Investment Management and Research. His honors included an honorary degree from Penn in 1984 and an honorary doctor of commercial science from the University of Toledo. He received the Association for Investment Management and Research’s Award for Professional Excellence and the Distinguished Alumnus Award from the Weatherhead School of Management at Case Western. He was chosen by Fortune and 300 of his peers as one of 10 outstanding investors of the 20th century.

He is survived by his children, Lisa Neff-Ryave and Stephen.

Gail Oberton, VPUL

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caption: Gail ObertonGail Oberton, director of the Provost’s Summer Mentorship Program at Penn, died on May 29 from breast cancer. She was 59.

Ms. Oberton joined the staff at Penn in 2000 as an administrative assistant in the Division of the Vice Provost for University Life (VPUL). In 2003, she took a position as the office manager for Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS), then became executive assistant for VPUL’s Equity and Access Programs. From 2008 until her passing in May, she served as director of the Provost’s Summer Mentorship Program (SMP) in VPUL.

According to William Gipson, associate vice provost for Equity and Access, “Her role as director of SMP will be her legacy. She took over the lead of a program that was in its infancy, having begun in 2006, and grew it into a highly sought after college preparatory program for Philadelphia public and charter high school students. Gail was a critical player in adding a year-round component to the program, which emphasized STEM. Further, she developed strong buy-in with key leaders in the five Penn partner schools—PSOM, Dental, Law, Engineering and Nursing—as well as with high school principals and counselors throughout the city. Her leadership embodied one of the best examples of the Inclusion aspect of the Penn Compact 2020. Most important, however, is the fact that over 400 alumni have matriculated at a wide variety of colleges and universities, including Penn, and many are now in masters’ programs.”

Ms. Oberton is survived by her siblings: Kathryn Bazemore (Weldon), Eugene Keenan Jr. (Cornelia), Betty Summerville (Howard), Milton Keenan (Dorothy), and Debra Keenan-Allison (Roberto); her children, Candace M. Braddock and Nicholas K. Oberton, Sr.; grandchildren, Collin Timberlake, and Nalani and Nicholas K. Oberton, Jr.

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

In Memory of Paul Sehnert

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caption: Paul Sehnert's siblings sitting on his dedicated park bench.A park bench in memory of Paul Sehnert has been dedicated at the Plaza at Pennovation Works, where, according to FRES VP Anne Papageorge, Mr. Sehnert was considered the ‘mayor,’ with gratitude from the community he helped shape as Penn’s director of real estate development. Mr. Sehnert died on May 19 at the age of 63 (Almanac May 28, 2019).

Governance

Trustees Annual June Meeting

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The University of Pennsylvania Board of Trustees held their annual stated meeting at the Inn at Penn on June 14. They amended the Statutes to recognize the recently changed name of the School of Design, now the University of Pennsylvania Stuart Weitzman School of Design (Almanac March 12, 2019).

The Trustees re-elected David L. Cohen as chair and Robert M. Levy as vice chair of the Board of Trustees, and they elected the executive committee and investment board.

A resolution of appreciation was passed for Robert S. Kapito, who has served as a Penn trustee since 2009 and prior to that was one of the founders of the Debt Subcommittee, providing leadership on 21 debt issuances totaling $4.6 billion.

President Amy Gutmann presented a resolution of appreciation, which was passed with a standing ovation, for Leslie Laird Kruhly, who was appointed secretary of the University in 2000. She served as vice president and secretary since 2011 and is now retiring.

Medha Narvekar was appointed vice president and secretary of the University effective July 1. She has been at DAR for over 30 years and has an MBA from Wharton. She will continue to provide leadership to DAR by serving as a liaison from Development to the President’s Office (Almanac March 12, 2019).

President Gutmann said that the Power of Penn campaign came full circle with a gala at The Met in Philadelphia this spring (Almanac April 2, 2019). She also noted that Geoffrey Garrett, “a spectacular Dean of Wharton,” would be leaving Penn at the end of the upcoming academic year (see article), and a search committee will be formed soon to find his successor.

Provost Wendell Pritchett mentioned two recent appointments: Rachel Werner as executive director of LDI and Martine Haas as the Anthony L. Davis Director of the Lauder Institute (Almanac May 28, 2019).

EVP Craig Carnaroli gave the financial report with forecasted results for the FY ending June 30, 2019: total net assets for the consolidated University are forecasted to increase $458 million to $19 billion due to strong operating performance. For the upcoming FY, total net assets are budgeted to increase $884 million to $20 billion ($13.7 billion academic component and $6.3 billion health system).

Dean Larry Jameson gave the Penn Medicine report, announcing that a Penn/CHOP team has shown that in utero editing could be a promising new approach for treating lung diseases before birth. Amicus Therapeutics and the Perelman School of Medicine recently announced a major expansion to their collaboration with rights to pursue collaborative research and development of novel gene therapies for lysosomal disorders and 12 additional rare diseases (see article). Dean Jameson also noted that Penn’s new Beckman Center for Cyro-EM (Cryogenic Electron Microscopy) held its ribbon cutting and inaugural symposium in late May.

Dean of Admissions Eric Furda gave the admissions report for the Class of 2023: There were more than 44,000 applicants with a 7.7% admit rate from all 50 states and Puerto Rico. The incoming class has 144 students from Philadelphia; one in eight students are first generation. There are also 116 transfer students.

The Trustees passed a resolution for the School of Dental Medicine to establish a department of basic and translational sciences by consolidating existing departments of anatomy and cell biology, biochemistry, microbiology and pathology, to foster interdisciplinary collaboration.

The annual resolutions concerning the budget were passed authorizing the FY 2020 operating budgets for the University ($4 billion on an RCM basis) and the Health System ($7.4 billion), the Capital Plan for the University ($377 million) and the Health System ($538.3 million), the spending rule for endowments (5.5% for financial aid endowments and 5% for non-aid endowments).

Other resolutions passed, including: authorization to design and construct the Pennovation Works Main Lab Building ($35 million); Lauder Institute renovations, phase 2 ($6.5 million); design, development and construction of the Interventional Support Center, formerly called the Sterile Processing Facility ($40 million); design, development and construction of a single room proton therapy unit at the Ann B. Barshinger Cancer Institute of Lancaster General Hospital ($48.2 million); increased equity interest in Good Shepherd Penn Partners joint venture ($10 million); a long-term lease of 3801 Market Street for Health System ($15 million).

There were numerous appointments to Penn Medicine, overseer and other boards.

Policies

Of Record: FY2020 Postdoc Stipends

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The Office of the Vice Provost for Research, in consultation with the Provost Council on Research, is responsible for setting minimum stipend levels for postdoctoral trainees across the University. The University has adopted the National Research Service Awards (NRSA) stipend scale for all postdocs. See: https://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/notice-files/NOT-OD-19-036.html

Please note that these stipend levels represent minimums. Schools and departments may establish their own guidelines as long as stipend rates meet or exceed those established by the University. Penn investigators are also expected to comply with any postdoctoral stipend guidelines promulgated by their sponsors, if these sponsor-specified guidelines exceed the Penn minimum stipend levels.

Note: Stipends should be adjusted upwards at the time of the annual postdoctoral reappointment, at the time of the annual grant renewal or at the beginning of the NIH fiscal year.

FY2020 Minimum Stipend Levels

Years of ExperienceStipend
0$50,004
1$50,376
2$50,760
3$52,896
4$54,756

—Dawn Bonnell, Vice Provost for Research

Human Resources Policy Updates for Fiscal Year 2019-2020

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As part of the Human Capital Management Initiative and after careful review, Penn has updated many of its Human Resources policies.

Three new Human Resources policies go into effect July 1, 2019:

Time Reporting: Policy 310
Form I-9: Policy 207
Payments in Advance of Hire Date: Policy 311

These new policies, along with all the revisions, are available in the online Human Resources Policy Manual (www.hr.upenn.edu/policies-and-procedures/policy-manual-updates-for-fy2020). They reflect the University’s ongoing commitment to organizational best practices, financial stewardship, transparency and compliance with local, state and federal law.

These changes will not impact faculty and staff members’ benefits eligibility, time off and pay. Most changes are technical and administrative updates to existing policies; these policy modifications integrate Workday@Penn with University Human Resources operations.

Time Reporting Requirement Reminder

Under the new Time Reporting policy, all weekly-paid non-exempt staff, temporary staff and student workers will report their hours worked and time away from work (i.e., sick leave and paid time off) each week in Workday. Their supervisors or designated administrators will approve these time reports.

  • To receive a paycheck, all individuals paid on an hourly basis need to enter their time into Workday.

Weekly timesheet submissions are due by Sunday at 9 p.m. Eastern time.

If you use a time clock system to report for the week, your time clock data will automatically feed into Workday for review and approval. If an individual cannot enter his/her time, the manager or timekeeper can enter it on his/her behalf.

Staff Paid Time Off Requests

The revised Paid Time Off policy states that all scheduled staff paid time off requests must be entered into Workday for supervisor approval. This policy change covers monthly-paid staff and weekly-paid staff. Unscheduled paid time off must also be requested in Workday. Staff members should enter it as soon as possible. If staff members are unable to do so, their supervisors may enter the request into Workday on their behalf.

Using Workday to Report Time, Request Time Off, and Approve Requests

Workday@Penn makes weekly time reporting and time off requests easier. Employees and supervisors will have access to one system of record for fairness, transparency and clarity.

You should have received your Workday “Week One Checklist” email with logon instructions. To learn more, faculty, staff, and student workers can take Workday self-service courses online at www.workday.upenn.edu/home/training Step-by-step Workday tips sheets are also available at www.workday.upenn.edu/home/training/tip-sheets

If you have questions, please contact the Penn Employee Solution Center at hcmsolutioncenter@upenn.edu or (215) 898-7372

—Division of Human Resources

Time Reporting—New Policy 310

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The purpose of this policy is to provide time reporting requirements for all individuals paid on an hourly basis (including weekly-paid staff, temporary staff and students). 

1. Reporting

Individuals paid on an hourly basis will follow positive pay reporting. Positive pay reporting is accurately entering/recording all hours worked, compensatory time and time away from work, including but not limited to paid time off (PTO), sick, holiday, bereavement and jury duty.

Individuals paid on an hourly basis must accurately enter into Workday their hours worked for each day of the work week.  At the end of the work week, the time worked for that week must be submitted.

For each day worked by an individual paid on an hourly basis, that person must enter the time they began working that day, as well as the time they stopped working that day.

In addition, if an individual paid on an hourly basis takes a meal or other break that is at least 30 consecutive, uninterrupted minutes, the individual must record the break in Workday by entering the time the individual stopped working to begin the break, as well as the time the individual began working again following the break. Individuals should not record in Workday any meal or other breaks that are less than 30 consecutive minutes in length. Rather, any break that is less than 30 consecutive minutes should be treated as working time and should not be recorded.

Workday uses a 15 minute rounding system based on seven minute intervals. For example, a start time of 7:07 a.m. is rounded to 7 a.m. A start time of 7:09 a.m. is rounded to 7:15 a.m. A similar rounding occurs for end times.

Monthly-paid staff will follow exception pay reporting.  Exception pay reporting is accurately entering/recording only time away from work, including but not limited to paid time off (PTO), sick, holiday, bereavement and jury duty.

2. Responsibilities

Individuals paid on an hourly basis are responsible for doing the following:

  • Accurately entering into Workday their start and end times for each day worked, as well as the start and end times of any meal break that is at least 30 consecutive, uninterrupted minutes. Individuals should not record in Workday any meal breaks that are less than 30 consecutive minutes in length.
  • Submitting their completed weekly time records in Workday within the time period required for approval.
  • Not entering the time worked of another individual or instructing/advising another individual to falsify or incorrectly report time.

Managers/Timekeepers are responsible for doing the following:

  • Ensuring that all of these individuals have entered their hours worked timely into Workday and submitted them for approval.  If an individual has not entered his/her time, the manager/timekeeper must ensure that it is timely entered and can do so on his/her behalf, if necessary.
  • Reviewing hours worked for accuracy addressing any issues prior to approving time, and timely approving these individuals’ time in Workday.
  • Not falsifying or incorrectly reporting time worked by an individual, or instructing/advising an individual to do the same.
  • If any errors or omissions are identified, promptly submitting corrections for any errors or omissions. This should be done before payment if possible, or after payment if necessary.

Individuals who violate this policy will be subject to disciplinary action up to and including termination.

Form I-9—New Policy 207

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Form I-9 is used to verify the identity and employment authorization of individuals hired for employment in the United States. In accordance with US Immigration Law, the University of Pennsylvania must ensure proper completion of Form I-9 for all individuals who are hired (or rehired) to perform work in the United States in exchange for wages or other remuneration.  

It is a violation of US Immigration Law to continue the employment of a person if the employer knows or should know that the person is not authorized to work in the United States.  Timely completion of the Form I-9 facilitates compliance with this obligation.

An individual who fails to present to the University the required Form I-9 documentation, or an acceptable receipt, within three (3) business days from his/her first day of work, or prior to the expiration of his/her work authorization documentation, is not permitted to work until the required documentation has been presented. If the documentation is not presented, then separation from employment is appropriate.

See the Hiring Officer’s Handbook for information about completing the Form I-9.

Payments in Advance of Hire Date— New Policy 311

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It is the policy of the University not to provide payments of any kind to any employee prior to the commencement of his/her employment with the University.

Honors

Maya Arthur: KWH Post-Bacc Fellow

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caption: Maya ArthurMaya Arthur (C’18) has been selected as the inaugural Kelly Writers House Post-Baccalaureate Fellow. The KWH Post-Bacc Fellows project extends a central objective of the Writers House: to direct resources toward opportunities, learning experiences and foundational support to young writers. The position comes with a full year of support (a full-time salary, mentorship and career-boosting learning opportunities). During the course of her fellowship, Ms. Arthur will pursue a self-directed creative project, working closely with professor Simone White, who has been named her faculty mentor. She will also work several hours a week at the Writers House, where she will learn editing and curating with PennSound and Jacket2, and she will assist with the presentation of public events.

Ms. Arthur is a writer and novice archivist/artist/researcher. She graduated from Penn with a BA in English with a concentration in creative writing. During her time at Penn, she gardened in graves, founded a zine library and recorded podcasts. Her senior year thesis was titled “Comma, Virginia,” a collection of poetry that sought to find cohesion through the collision and estrangement of genre, perspective, intricacies and history of her father’s family and the small, rural town they are from and where they still reside. She is currently based in New York. Through the KWH Post-Bacc Fellowship, she hopes to expand her thesis into a multimedia project that explores creating one’s own archive. She is also a 2019 Lambda Poetry Fellow.

Joy Azikiwe: Delaware Valley HR Person of the Year

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caption: Joy AzikiweJoy Azikiwe, associate director of staff & labor relations, Human Resources/Information Management/Records and Strategic Initiatives in Penn’s Division of Human Resources, was recently named Delaware Valley HR Person of the Year. Ms. Azikiwe is responsible for supporting, developing and maintaining comprehensive staff and labor relations plans. She also works closely with the VP of HR Jack Heuer on institution-wide opportunities and objectives.

This award was developed in 2001 to celebrate the HR industry and to recognize those in the HR profession who demonstrate outstanding achievement within the Philadelphia region’s HR community.

The Delaware Valley HR Person of the Year Award is a joint effort between the Tri-State HR Management Association chapters of the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM),  Chester County Human Resources Association, Delaware County SHRM, Delaware SHRM, Greater Valley Forge HR Association, HR Association of Southern New Jersey and Philadelphia SHRM. The nomination committee received more than 200 applications for consideration.

Damon Centola and Douglas Guilbeault: Facebook Research Grant

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caption: Damon Centolacaption: Douglas GuilbeaultThe proposal entitled “Networked Crowdsourcing: An Online Experiment in Content Moderation” by Damon Centola, Annenberg School associate professor of communication and director of the Network Dynamics Group, and Annenberg doctoral candidate Douglas Guilbeault, was recently selected by Facebook to receive funding.

After reviewing over 180 proposals from 38 countries, Facebook selected 19 projects to receive funding for research that examines online content and focuses on hate speech and/or preventing offline harm.

This study will investigate how to categorize content online and how to design a more effective system for categorizing new content. The current system for content moderation involves crowdsourcing, with each contributor kept independent of all other contributors. They plan to apply their prior research in networked crowdsourcing to content moderation, theorizing that having contributors work together, rather than in isolation, will produce more coherent and accurate content classifications.

Raina Merchant: NAM Emerging Leader

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caption: Raina MerchantThe National Academy of Medicine (NAM) selected Penn Medicine’s Raina Merchant as a member of its newest class of Emerging Leaders of Health and Medicine Scholars. Dr. Merchant is the director of the Penn Center for Digital Health and an associate professor of Emergency Medicine in the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania. She was one of only 10 selected to join this new class, which began July 1 and will serve through June 30, 2022.

The NAM Emerging Leaders of Health and Medicine was established in 2016 for early and mid-career professionals who work in health care, health policy and similar fields. They participate in mentorship opportunities, exchange ideas and collaborate across multiple sectors and fields, and work to better shape NAM’s path forward in improving health in the United States.

“These extraordinary individuals represent the next generation of leading scientists, health care providers, public health professionals and policymakers, who are poised to shape the future of science, medicine and health equity,” NAM president Victor J. Dzau said.

Dr. Merchant’s work focuses on the intersection of the internet, digital media and health, for which she founded the Center for Digital Health within Penn Medicine’s Center for Health Care Innovation. Much of Dr. Merchant’s work focuses on the evaluation of health behaviors through lenses such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Yelp and search engines. Recently, she helped lead a team that discovered depression could be predicted as many as three months before it was diagnosed through the evaluation of language in Facebook posts.

Additionally, one of Dr. Merchant’s passions has been the marriage of new technology and heart health, leading to her directorship of the “MyHeartMap Challenge,” which used social media and crowdsourcing to provide an online map of automated external defibrillators (AEDs) across Philadelphia.

Laura Perna: Gates Foundation Commission Appointment

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caption: Laura PernaLaura Perna, James S. Riepe Professor in the division of Higher Education at Penn’s Graduate School of Education, was appointed to serve as part of a new Gates Foundation commission, the Commission on the Value of Postsecondary Education. This new national research group will “examine what we are learning about the value of postsecondary education and offer recommendations about how to define and measure that value.”

Joseph Subotnik: National Chemistry Award Finalist

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caption: Joseph SubotnikJoseph Subotnik, Edmund J. and Louise W. Kahn Term Professor of Chemistry, is a finalist for the 2019 Blavatnik National Award for Young Scientists. Dr. Subotnik is one of 31 “rising stars in science” selected as finalists out of 343 nominations from 169 academic and research centers. Three Blavatnik National Laureate Awards will be given, in the categories of chemistry, physical sciences and engineering, and life sciences. Each of the three laureates will win $250,000—the world’s largest unrestricted prize for early-career scientists.

Dr. Subotnik is a theoretical chemist who has made significant advances in the area of modeling electronic relaxation. This provides one of the few practical and rigorous means of modeling catalytically active and photo-excited materials. The announcement reads, “Subotnik’s work has made significant strides towards closing the gap between accurate theoretical chemistry models and experimentally obtained results.”

The Blavatnik Awards for Young Scientists were established by the Blavatnik Family Foundation in the United States and are administered by the New York Academy of Sciences. By the close of 2019, the Blavatnik Awards will have conferred prizes totaling over $8.4 million to 285 outstanding young scientists and engineers from more than 44 countries, representing 35 scientific and engineering disciplines. The 2019 Blavatnik National Laureates and finalists will be honored at the Blavatnik National Awards ceremony on September 23, 2019, at the American Museum of Natural History in New York.

Barbie Zelizer: ICA Mentorship Award

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caption: Barbie ZelizerAt the 69th Annual Conference of the International Communication Association (ICA), Barbie Zelizer, Raymond Williams Professor of Communication and director of the Center for Media at Risk at Penn’s Annenberg School for Communication, was awarded the 2019 B. Aubrey Fisher Mentorship Award, one of ICA’s top honors.

The award recognizes outstanding scholars, teachers and advisors who serve as role models in those capacities and who have had a major impact on the field of communication. Recipients of the award must also have influenced the discipline through their former students, who themselves are important figures in communication.

Dr. Zelizer’s advisees consistently impact the field of communication through their research, are the recipients of awards for their scholarship, and hold leadership positions throughout the discipline. She is known for her high standards and relentless encouragement, the combination of which pushes students to cultivate their own voices and passions.

CHOP: #2 US News Ranking

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Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia ranked #2 in US News & World Report’s “2019-2020 Best Children’s Hospital Rankings,” following Boston Children’s Hospital. CHOP ranked nationally in 10 pediatric specialties, including #1 rankings for pediatric diabetes & endocrinology, and in pediatric gastroenterology & GI surgery.

According to the listing, to create the pediatric rankings, key clinical data was gathered from nearly 200 medical centers through a detailed survey that looked at measures such as patient safety, infection prevention and adequacy of nurse staffing. In addition, part of each hospital’s score was derived from surveys of more than 11,000 pediatric specialists who were asked where they would send the sickest children in their specialty. In 2019, only 84 children’s hospitals were ranked in at least one of the pediatric specialties evaluated.

Fulbright Awardees

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Penn’s 2019-2020 Fulbright Award recipients include 14 undergraduates and two PhD candidates.

The Fulbright Program is the US government’s flagship international educational exchange program. Penn’s applicants are supported by the Center for Undergraduate Research and Fellowships (CURF).

Fulbright Study/Research Grants:

Fjora Arapi (COL’19) will conduct research in Albania

Carinthia Bank (SP2’19) will study at the University of Stirling in the United Kingdom, where she will read for a master’s in the Psychology of Sport

Wilson Fisher (SAS’19) will study photography made in the wake of the 2014 Euromaidan Revolution in Ukraine

Tiberiu Mihaila (SAS/GAS’19) will conduct research at the Max Planck Institute for Biophysical Chemistry in Berlin, Germany

Shiv Nadkarni (SAS’19) will study at the University of Roehampton in the United Kingdom, pursuing a master’s degree in dance anthropology and focusing on Kathak dance/movement therapy for kids with motor development disorders

Bryan Norton, a PhD student in the Program in Comparative Literature and Literary Theory, will be a visiting researcher in the German department at Goethe Universität in Frankfurt am Main, Germany

Hughes Ransom (SAS’19) will study film in Mexico starting in January 2020

Helen Stuhr-Rommereim, a PhD candidate in the Comparative Literature & Literary Theory Program, will conduct archival research in Russia, in Moscow and St. Petersburg, on the personal documentary materials of the authors central to her project in the 2019-2020 academic year

English Teaching Assistant Grants and the Countries to which they are headed:

Julia Bell (SAS’19)—Czech Republic

Savi Joshi (Wharton’19)—Malaysia

John McGahay (SAS’19)—Germany

Candace Morff (SAS’19)—Germany

Caroline Scown (SAS’19)—Taiwan

Nicholas Wehbeh (SAS’19)—Bahrain

Other Fulbright Grant Awardees:

Dillon Bergin (SAS’19) will be part of the Fulbright Young Professional Journalist Program in Germany, where he will be based out of Freiburg, writing freelance stories about the climate justice and environmental movement in Germany.

Mark Rinder (SAS/Wharton’19) will be a participant in the Fulbright-García Robles Binational Internship. He will be paired with a company or NGO and study international business at the Instituto Tecnológico Autónomo de México.

RealArts@Penn Summer Interns and Prize Winners 2019

  • July 16, 2019
  • vol 66 issue 1
  • Honors
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RealArts@Penn is a project of Penn’s Center for Programs in Contemporary Writing. Following are the recipients of its paid summer internships for 2019 as well as its prize winners, who are given funds to help with costs associated with internships they have already been offered.

Summer Internships

Journalism, Publications, and Print:

Elaina Doft (C’21): Downtown Bookworks Inc. (New York City)

Charlotte Bausch (C’20): Flathead Beacon (Montana)

Joyce Hida (C’21): Library of Congress (Washington, DC )

Carmina Hachenburg (C’21): Philadelphia Media Network (Philadelphia)

Sabrina Qiao (C’19): Philadelphia Magazine (Philadelphia)

Colin Lodewick (C’19): Pitchfork Media (New York City)

Sophia DuRose (C’21): McSweeney’s and the Believer (San Francisco)

Elizabeth Lemieux (C’21): Small Press Distribution (San Francisco)

Museum:

Brooke Krancer (C’20): Morgan Library and Museum (New York City)

Music:

Teresa Xie (C’20): Settlement Music School (Philadelphia)

Samuel Kesler (C’20): Shore Fire Media (New York City)

Television and Film:

Becca Lieberman (C’20): Brooklyn Films (Los Angeles)

Caroline Harris (C’19): David Stern and Stuart Gibbs, Writers (Los Angeles)

Liza Babin (C’20): Doug Robinson Productions (Los Angeles)

John Anderson (C’21): Genre Films (Los Angeles)

Kate Lindenburg (C’20): Grandview (Los Angeles)

Hughes Ransom (C’19), Lexi Lieberman (C’20): Management 360 (Los Angeles)

Shalom Obiago (C’21): Monami Productions (New York City)

Akhil Vaidya (C’22): Tremolo Productions (Los Angeles)

Francesca Reznik (C’19): Viacom Catalyst: Creative + Strategy (New York City)

Theater:

Lynn Osegura (C’19): 1812 Productions (Philadelphia)

Ali Yarto (C’20): Warner Bros. Theatre Ventures (New York City)

Prize Winners

Anjali Berdia, NoCamels.com

Ka Yee Christy Ching, Philadelphia Museum of Art

Rachelle Frederic, Safehouse Pictures

Maritza Hernandez, Creative Resilience Collective

Kati Kim, Mad Chance Productions and Joint Effort Productions

Peter Lu, Mophonics & Spin Move Producers

Amy Marcus, To Write Love On Her Arms

Cassidy Mazurek, Pennsylvania Ballet Association

Rowana Miller, The New York Public Theater

Galena Sardamova, The Barnes Foundation/Slought

Toni Walker, Viacom

Features

Establishing Relationships and Collaborations: A Formula for Diversifying Suppliers

  • July 16, 2019
  • vol 66 issue 1
  • Features
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Penn’s Executive Vice President Craig Carnaroli spoke at the Diversity Supplier Forum and Expo on June 20. Below is a lightly edited version of his remarks about Penn’s investment in civic engagement and economic development.

It is a genuine pleasure to be addressing you at our third annual Diversity Supplier Forum and Expo. This event continues to draw crowds because convening on this important topic has value. That value comes from the learning we all get from the best practices and success stories from our great panelists. And, let’s be real…the networking at the Expo is awesome. I want to take this opportunity to share some reflections on Penn’s dedication to Economic Inclusion. Penn’s investment in civic engagement and economic development is a bedrock principle of this institution. Under our President Amy Gutmann, it draws new inspiration from the Penn Compact—our strategic vision.

The Compact is organized by the three I’s:

Innovation

Impact

Inclusion

I believe a fourth I is relevant when it comes to supplier diversity, and that is Intentional. Now, I have intentionally used the word intentional. To be intentional is a powerful concept, and especially true for Anchor Institutions, such as Penn. It means we a take seriously our role as a fixed presence in Philadelphia, and one that is unlikely to move. As a result, we make deliberate decisions to enhance the community and city for the long haul. And just because we are a research university—does not mean this is an academic exercise. Quite the opposite—this is an action-oriented strategy, and it has been for decades.

In 1996, we began to formally set goals, track results and measure the impact of our local and diversity spend. And since then we have spent nearly $1 billion in aggregate, with more than 2,600 individual local and diverse suppliers. In the big picture, that is an impressive number.

However, I am equally proud of another data point because it demonstrates our team is not resting its laurels. Since 2014, we have added 635 new individual suppliers that are local and diverse.

Diversity Supplier Stories

As much as I like looking at the data, I am also very interested in hearing about the relationships and collaborations created in this space.

‘Relationships’ is not a traditional metric, but it’s critically important because relationships matter.

To that end, I thought I would share three brief examples:

EMSCO Scientific:

Eight months ago Penn awarded its lab equipment contract to EMSCO Fischer—a unique model of collaborative behavior. For the last 20 years EMSCO Scientific has been a leader in the competitive business of lab equipment, and a key Penn vendor. In 2018 it was time to take the business out to bid, and the RFP required every bidder to include a local and diversity element.

West Philly-based Fisher Scientific, a lab equipment company under the leadership of Lin Thomas, saw this as an opportunity to form a minority-majority partnership with EMSCO to serve Penn’s lab supplies needs.

Fisher drew on its other solid relationship with the Enterprise Center for expert counsel, and after an intense and competitive bidding process the newly formed EMSCO-Fischer won the contract as Penn’s first tier supplier of lab equipment.

It has been eight months and the EMSCO-Fisher model at Penn is operating smoothly and is ready to be scaled upward and outward.

As EMSCO expands its service model and scales beyond Penn, it is projecting the creation of new jobs focusing on West Philadelphia residents for the team’s first hires.

What I admire about this story is the creativity by both Fisher and EMSCO to see what was possible in building and forming a new relationship and thinking strategically about collaboration.   

AppleOne:

Way back in 2014, Penn Purchasing took a meeting with the Enterprise Center, our partner in finding and working with diverse businesses, which revealed information about AppleOne—a women-owned, minority-owned workforce management company.

As I mentioned, we behave with intent, and it was clear that AppleOne was a company we should know more about, even if it was just a “get to know you” meeting.

In 2015, Penn’s HR department was bidding out its contract for a company to supply our temporary staffing services. The RFP required the contract go to a firm with demonstrated skill in setting and measuring diversity and inclusion metrics and the ability to partner with the West Philadelphia community.

AppleOne was invited to bid, and beat out 15 other companies for the Penn account.  How did they win? Was it competitive pricing? A track record of quality services? Sophisticated management systems?

Yes, yes and yes.

But what AppleOne had more than anything else was a core value and demonstrated skill of building relationships and a history of collaboration in service of diversity and inclusion.

AppleOne has built a location at 34th and Market Street, and for the last three years it has provided Penn, and the neighborhood, services to help local residents find gainful employment at Penn, and help Penn draw upon local talent.

Telrose Corp:

Let me take you back to the year 1995. Todd Rose is a West Philadelphia sales rep with Xerox, servicing the Penn account, with a dream of being an entrepreneur. Todd was familiar with the University’s culture and created an idea for a new company, Telrose Corp, which he would start in his apartment in West Philadelphia. His vision was for Telrose to partner with Office Depot and serve as a Tier 1 supplier of office supplies to Penn.

Todd’s ability to create win-win partnerships led to his expansion into office furniture and servicing multi-functional devices on campus. Not only has it worked well at Penn, Telrose is a vendor to other anchor institutions around Philadelphia. Telrose grew to 24 employees, with 75% of them living in West Philadelphia.

It’s no longer run out of Todd’s apartment, but has its own headquarters on Powelton Avenue. Todd himself gives back to the community by collaborating with the West Philadelphia Corridor Collaborative—one of Penn’s partners in the room today—as well as the University City District’s West Philadelphia Skills Initiative.

What impresses me most about Telrose and Todd is their talent for collaboration which has created more opportunity and more jobs.

Conclusion

In wrapping up, let me point out that Penn itself focuses on building relationships around supplier diversity and inclusion. We are proud to support two city-wide efforts:

The Philadelphia Area Collegiate Cooperative, or PACC, is a procurement cooperative of over 20 colleges and universities in the Philadelphia region who collaborate to achieve best procurement outcomes for the collective.

The Philadelphia Anchors for Growth & Equity, or PAGE, led by the Economy League, advocates among Anchors’ and major suppliers to think creatively about how to grow diverse and local businesses.

As I reflect on Penn’s own performance I can point to some data on our local and diverse spend. For example, in calendar year 2018 the diversity spend across the city was $126 million. And the local spend in West Philly was $90 million. And as I have pointed out, we don’t achieve those figures and make that impact without first establishing relationships and collaborations. And we don’t achieve any of this unless we have talented people on both sides of the equation who are intentional about this work.

Research

Retail’s Big Mistake: Slashing Payroll Cuts into Profits

  • July 16, 2019
  • vol 66 issue 1
  • Research
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A common strategy for retailers to boost profits is to cut labor, but this quick fix is “business school thinking gone wrong,” according to Wharton professors of operations, information and decisions Marshall Fisher, Serguei Netessine and Santiago Gallino. It is imperative for retail companies to recognize that employees are the most valuable asset on any sales floor.

In their latest research, the professors make the case for having an adequate, well-trained staff as the long-term solution to stable profit margins. They also unveiled a mathematical approach they have devised to help companies determine how much staffing is needed at which locations. The research is captured in a paper titled, “Setting Retail Staffing Levels: A Methodology Validated with Implementation.”

“Understaffing stores and undertraining workers was never a good idea, but it’s especially bad now, because it takes away the biggest advantage traditional stores have over e-tailers: a live person a customer can talk with face-to-face,” the professors wrote in an article for Harvard Business Review.

Temporary reductions in personnel or hours often become permanent or cyclical, and stores get caught in what the professors describe as a downward spiral until there is little or nothing left.

Using statistical software tools, the professors created a three-step methodology for retailers to set staffing levels at each store location: 1) Use historical data on revenue and planned and actual staffing levels by store to estimate how revenue varies with the staffing level at each store. Use employee absenteeism to help you: If an employee does not show up for work at the last minute, check sales impact. 2) Using historical analysis as a guide, validate the results by changing the staffing levels in a few test stores. 3) Implement the results chain-wide and measure the impact.

The professors employed this method with several retailers with significant results. For one retailer, right-sizing the staff in 168 stores over a six-month period produced a 4.5% revenue increase and a nearly $7.4 million annual profit increase, after accounting for the cost of the additional labor.

The professors also advocate for employees to be trained properly in both the products and the processes of the store. “One surprising thing we found is that when you train store employees on a particular product, it’s not that they increase sales of only that product. What we found is they actually increase sales across a product category,” Dr. Netessine said. Their research found that for every hour a month an employee spent on simple online training, the revenue from that employee went up about 6% that month.

The bottom line? Employees are an essential part of any retail operation’s top line.

Aging Homeless Population Will Nearly Triple by 2030

  • July 16, 2019
  • vol 66 issue 1
  • Research
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The population of individuals who are homeless and elderly is expected to nearly triple over the next decade, according to a new study released by researchers at the University of Pennsylvania, University of California Los Angeles, New York University, and Boston University.

Experts say the projected upturn of the aging homeless population—concentrated among those born 1955-1966—will also lead to a surge of cost increases associated with health care and shelter needs.

The multi-site study includes Boston, New York City and Los Angeles County, but is likely indicative of growth that is expected to take place across the country, according to homelessness expert Dennis Culhane, The Dana and Andrew Stone Professor of Social Policy at the University of Pennsylvania School of Social Policy & Practice.

More specifically, the national population of people 65 or older experiencing homelessness is estimated to grow from 40,000 to 106,000 by 2030. The predicted spike is based on 30 years of existing census data.

“Caring for this elderly group in homelessness is going to cost about $5 billion a year—that’s just for their health care and shelter, not to house them,” said Dr. Culhane, the principal investigator of the study.

The forecast is bleak, but not inevitable. Dr. Culhane said they’ve identified evidence-based approaches that would alleviate both housing instability for the aging and the increase in costs.

A number of housing interventions, including permanent supportive housing and rapid re-housing, could offset issues of homelessness, declining health statuses, and excessive healthcare spending all at once.

The study, broken into four phases, subdivided and analyzed groups based on their use of shelter and medical acuity to project future figures, as well as determine solutions that would best accommodate individuals.

“We can either just maintain people who are in poor health and in a state of homelessness, with crowded emergency rooms, hospitals and nursing homes, or we could use the money wisely to actually solve their homelessness problem and reduce the total costs,” said Dr. Culhane.

Targeted Drug for Leukemia Helps Patients Live Longer

  • July 16, 2019
  • vol 66 issue 1
  • Research
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An inhibitor drug that targets a specific mutation in relapsed or refractory acute myeloid leukemia (AML) helps patients live almost twice as long as those who receive chemotherapy. Researchers at Penn’s Abramson Cancer Center presented the findings of ADMIRAL—a randomized clinical trial investigating the drug gilteritinib in patients with a mutation in the Fms-like tyrosine kinase 3 (FLT3) gene—at the 2019 American Association for Cancer Research Annual Meeting. Alexander Perl, an associate professor of hematology-oncology in PSOM, led the trial. The drug was recently approved by the FDA as XOSPATA.

“Patients with FLT3 mutations who have relapsed or refractory AML have very low response rates to chemotherapy at the time of relapse, and their survival is poor as a result,” Dr. Perl said. “This drug is specifically designed to help this group of patients, and now we’ve shown it can make a huge difference for those who, until recently, had no specific therapies available beyond chemotherapy.”

FLT3 is the most commonly mutated gene in AML and is found in about 30% of patients’ leukemia cells. The FLT3 gene is expressed in normal bone marrow cells and regulates the orderly growth of blood cells in response to daily demands. When the gene is mutated in a leukemia cell, the cancer cells grow in an uncontrolled manner unless the function of FLT3 is turned off by drugs like gilteritinib.

In the ADMIRAL trial, 371 patients were randomized, with 247 receiving gilteritinib and 124 receiving chemotherapy. The patients who took gilteritinib had a median overall survival of 9.3 months compared to 5.6 months for the chemotherapy patients. At one year, 37% of patients on gilteritinib were still alive, compared to 16.7% of patients in the chemotherapy group. The combined rates of complete remissions (CR) or CR with partial hematologic recovery (CRh) were 34% for the gilteritinib arm and 15% for the chemotherapy arm.

“Although the incidence of various side effects was similar across the study arms, patients took gilteritinib for considerably longer than they underwent chemotherapy,” Dr. Perl said. “This actually means the likelihood of side effects on a daily basis is lower on this drug.”

Dr. Perl noted that the safety profile of the drug also means gilteritinib can be used not only to stabilize patients for a potentially curative bone marrow transplant, but also as an ongoing therapy following transplant in the hope of reducing the chance for relapse.

Unlocking the Female Bias in Lupus

  • July 16, 2019
  • vol 66 issue 1
  • Research
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The autoimmune disease lupus strikes females far more often than males. According to a new study by Penn researchers, females with lupus don’t fully “silence” their second X chromosome in the immune system’s T cells, leading to abnormal expression of genes linked to that chromosome.

The work, led by Montserrat Anguera, an assistant professor in the department of biomedical sciences at Penn Vet and published in the journal JCI Insight, is the first to connect disruptions in maintaining X chromosome inactivation in T cells to lupus. It also suggests that changes to the nuclear structure in the inactive X chromosome of T cells may play a part in the genetic missteps that can arise in lupus.

In earlier studies, Dr. Anguera’s lab found that in females both T cells and B cells have incomplete inactivation of the second X chromosome due to changes in the patterns of Xist, an RNA molecule that is necessary for X inactivation. In the new work, they wanted to more closely examine this process in T cells in the context of an autoimmune disease.

Tracking the process of X inactivation in T cells from healthy mice, they found as T cells develop, Xist temporarily diffuses away from the inactive X chromosome. When a T cell is activated, Xist RNA returns to this chromosome. They then used a mouse model that spontaneously developed lupus in a female-biased manner. All female mice of this strain developed the disease; only 40% of males did. Those at early stages of disease resembled healthy controls in their patterns of Xist localization. Those in the later stages had a very different pattern.

“Abnormal X inactivation is a consequence of the disease; it’s not predisposing the animal to develop the disease,” noted Dr. Anguera. When the researchers looked at T cells from pediatric lupus patients, provided by study co-author Edward M. Behrens, Joseph Hollander Associate Professor in Pediatric Rheumatology at PSOM, they found the same mislocalization of Xist, even though the children were in remission. Comparing additional data from female and male lupus patients with either severe or mild disease, as well as healthy controls, they found a subset of genes altered only in the females with lupus. The research team also found that a subset of the altered genes in the lupus patients belonged to regions of the X chromosome that didn’t normally escape inactivation. Of this smaller group, some were lower in expression in lupus patients are involved in controlling nuclear organization and structure.

Events

Human Resources: Upcoming Programs in July and August

  • July 16, 2019
  • vol 66 issue 1
  • Events
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Professional & Personal Development Programs

Open to faculty and staff. Register at http://knowledgelink.upenn.edu/

July

STEP-UP Introduction: the First Steps to Excellence; 7/17; 9 a.m.–noon, $300 for entire course. STEP-UP Introduction: the First Steps to Excellence is the first session of a multiple-session course. STEP-UP (Self-Management, Teaming, Empowerment and Professionalism at the University of Pennsylvania) is for motivated individuals who want to lead themselves and others more effectively. By the end of the First Steps to Excellence, you’ll have a deeper understanding of your five signature strengths and discover additional ways to take charge of your career at Penn. Pre-work is required, so please register as far in advance as possible.

Tools for Career Assessment and Development; 7/23; 12:30-1:30 p.m. In this program we will examine questions for assessing and developing your career. You will contrast your career options by utilizing a variety of tools. By the end of the session you will have the resources needed to develop a plan for career success.

Tips for Effective Meetings; 7/25; 12:30-1:30 p.m. In this program we will discuss key things that can be done as both the meeting organizer and participant to ensure meetings are more effective and productive.

Challenging Negative Attitudes; 7/30; 12:30-1:30 p.m. By challenging negative attitudes, we have the power to take control of pessimistic perspectives and stressful situations. During this course, participants will learn to manage the impact of negative situations and deal with negative people.

August

Adapting Your Leadership Style; 8/8; 12:30-1:30 p.m. Leadership styles can vary based on working environment, personal background, or industry. Knowing how to effectively channel the right leadership style given a specific audience or setting is key to being an effective leader.  In this course, we will uncover the qualities it takes to be a leader, recognize style differences, understand how to conduct one-on-ones, and develop motivation approaches for employees.

Project Management; 8/13; noon-1 p.m.,;$75. Managing projects can feel daunting. It requires a focus on defining the initiative, planning for work, managing the initiative and monitoring results. Join us for a seminar to learn about tools and techniques that can help you manage your projects successfully.

The Gift of Feedback; 8/21; 12:30-1:30 p.m. Feedback can be an amazing gift that helps improve performance, but many managers feel challenged by giving and receiving feedback.  In this session managers will learn how to frame feedback as a gift that creates productive dialog and improved performance. We will also cover how managers can solicit feedback from staff in order to become more effective leaders.

Work-life Workshops

Open to faculty and staff. Register at www.hr.upenn.edu/registration

August

Alzheimer’s Disease and Dementia: Caregiving Challenges and Strategies; 8/6; 1-2 p.m. There are more than 5 million Americans currently living with Alzheimer’s disease and more than 15 million family caregivers who help them in the United States. Within the next 10 years, that number is projected to increase by 40%. This seminar will review the different forms of dementia, including Alzheimer’s, and signs your loved one may have the disease. Despite the devastating nature of Alzheimer’s disease, there are supports out there that can make a difference and help you continue to connect with your mom or dad. Learn about caregiving strategies and types of care that can improve the quality of life for both you and your parent.

Guided Meditation; 8/15 and 8/27; 12:30-1:30 p.m. Practice mindful breathing that focuses your attention on the present moment with kindness, compassion, and awareness. Self-massage and gentle mindful movements that promote relaxation and reduce stress may also be included in the workshop. No experience necessary.

Mindfulness; 8/21; 12:30-1:30 p.m. This monthly workshop will offer participants an opportunity to practice awareness activities adapted from Jon Kabat-Zinn’s Mindfulness-based Stress Reduction (MBSR) program. During the first part of our practice, we will begin with a guided meditation focusing on the breath. The second half of our session will focus our attention on a guided exploration of the body, bringing awareness to the different areas of the body, and allowing ourselves to experience how each part feels, without trying to change anything. No experience necessary. All warmly welcome.    

Coping with Change; 12:30-1:30 p.m. Change in the workplace is inevitable. However, a changing environment can often produce stress or anxiety. Change and the resulting stress derive from both positive and negative events. This workshop explores the various stages of change, and steps employees can take to achieve acceptance. Through awareness, participants can increase their ability to cope with change in both their professional and personal lives.

Lactation Resource Group: Integrating Breastfeeding and Work; 8/27; noon-1 p.m. This interactive conversation, led by Diane Spatz, professor of perinatal nursing and Helen M. Shearer Term Professor of Nutrition; nurse researcher, director, Lactation Program; and director, Mothers’ Milk Bank, The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, will provide an opportunity for expecting, new and experienced parents on campus to get help with lactation challenges, ensure a smooth transition back to work and academics and share helpful tips with one another. If you are breastfeeding, chestfeeding, pumping and bottle-feeding, pregnant and thinking about breastfeeding, formula-feeding and curious about breastfeeding, this brown bag conversation is for you. This event is open to UPHS and University faculty, staff, students, post docs and their partners. Please feel free to bring your lunch.

Penn Healthy You Workshops

Open to faculty and staff. Register at www.hr.upenn.edu/registration

July

Cigarette Butt Clean-Up Walk; 7/18; noon- -12:30 p.m. Join the Healthy Penn Partnership and beautify Penn’s campus with a cigarette butt clean-up walk! We will split up into small groups to cover an assigned section of campus. Each group will ideally have one person with an iPhone to download the Rubbish app, which will be used to log the locations of cigarette butts on campus. Gloves and trash bags will be provided. Your work will help clean Penn’s campus and identify areas not in compliance with Penn’s Tobacco-Free Campus policy. Clean-up walks will be offered monthly this summer, each focusing on a different area of campus. This is a Be in the Know “Special Bonus Action Opportunity” for 2018-2019! Participants can submit a proof of bonus actions form to earn 10 bonus action points for this event.

August

Gentle Yoga; 8/1 and 8/8; noon-1 p.m. Let your body reward itself with movement! Join us for this Gentle Yoga session and explore the natural movements of the spine with slow and fluid moving bends and soft twists. During this session, you will flow into modified sun salutations that loosen those tightened muscles and joints of the lower back, neck, shoulders, and wrists. And as an added bonus, you’ll get a workout in the process. Mats and props will be provided.

August Wellness Walk; 8/2; noon-1 p.m. Our wellness walks encourage participants to increase their physical activity by stepping outside to pump up their heart rate by walking through Penn’s beautiful campus. What better way to get motivated and gain energy for the day! Meet the Center for Public Health Initiatives staff at noon in front of College Hall by the Ben Franklin statue. The walk will be approximately 2 miles and we will inform you when we have reached the 1-mile mark in the event that you need to exit the walk early. We hope you will be able to join us. Bring your water bottle and don’t forget your bring along a colleague and your sneakers!

Chair Yoga; 8/14; noon-1 p.m. Interested in trying yoga but don’t know where to start? Join us for a wonderful class of chair yoga. You get the same benefits of a regular yoga workout (like increased strength, flexibility and balance) but don’t have to master complex poses. Chair yoga can even better your breathing and teach you how to relax your mind and improve your wellbeing.

Spin; 8/14; 11:30 a.m.-12:15 p.m. Pedal your way to a fantastic workout indoors! With the use of stationary cycles, each class is led on a “virtual” outdoor road, complete with a variety of exercises. This class will give you an energizing, calorie-burning, fun workout and it is great for all fitness levels because you will always ride at a self-directed pace.

—Division of Human Resources

One Planet: Three Exhibits—Design with Nature, 50 Years Later

  • July 16, 2019
  • vol 66 issue 1
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The Ian McHarg Center for Urbanism and Ecology at the University of Pennsylvania, in conjunction with the Arthur Ross Gallery, and the Weitzman School of Design, present exhibits and related events through September 15 to commemorate the 50th anniversary of Ian McHarg’s landmark work, Design With Nature (1969). See mcharg.upenn.edu/now

caption: New forthcoming book.Design With Nature Now: Five Themes, 25 Projects at Meyerson Hall Lower Gallery, gallery hours: Tuesday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Saturday noon to 5 p.m. This exhibit which takes as its point of departure his book, is a global survey of ecological design in the 21st century. Design With Nature Now surveys 25 dynamic and visionary approaches to landscape architecture around the world, takes visitors to Professor McHarg’s Glasgow in a series of abstract meditations on place and time, and traces the development of his ecological approach to design. Themes: Big Wilds, Urban Futures, Rising Tides, Fresh Waters, Toxic Lands. A Curators Talk with KarenM’Closkey and Richard Weller on Designing Natures will be in Meyerson B-1 at 6:30 p.m. on August 28.

Laurel McSherry: A Book of Days at the Arthur Ross Gallery, in the Fisher Fine Arts Library Building, gallery hours: Tuesday, Thursday and Friday 10 am to 5 p.m.; Wednesday 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.; Saturday and Sunday noon to 5 p.m. Laurel McSherry: A Book of Days is conceived to inspire visitors to think about their everyday landscapes in new and thoughtful ways; it is meditations on place and time in Scotland. This site-specific installation by the landscape architect and visual artist, takes as its subject the Clyde River Valley in Scotland, Professor McHarg’s childhood home. Professor McHarg’s experiences in the landscapes there inform the very personal narrative which is central to Design With Nature. A Book of Days brings that experience to life through a series of installations using the mediums of video, etchings and sculpture. On August 7 and September 4 at noon, there will be a 12@12 gallery talk there. An Artist Talk and Reception will be held on September 11 at 5:30 p.m. at ARG.

caption: Ian McHarg in 1967 in Portugal. Ian and Carol McHarg Collection, Architectural  Archives, University of Pennsylvania.Ian McHarg: The House We Live In at Kroiz Gallery, Architectural Archives, gallery hours: Tuesday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Saturday noon to 5 p.m. Draws from extensive archival holdings in the Weitzman School of Design’s Architectural Archives to locate the foundations of Design With Nature in the 1950s and challenge some critics’ perception that Professor McHarg was uninterested in design and aloof to the subtleties of human experience. It brings a new emphasis to his early teaching, the activism it inspired among his students and followers, and the tools he created to redefine the parameters of design to be more attuned to the natural processes that form our ever-changing landscapes.

Update Summer AT PENN

  • July 16, 2019
  • vol 66 issue 1
  • Events
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Exhibits

Now Fruits of Matadero; explores the idea of growing microbially-augmented popsicles to develop new forms of cooling rituals in public space; Esther Klein Gallery. Through July 27.

Fitness and Learning

Institute of Contemporary Art

Info: www.icaphila.org

7/17    Lecture with Orkan Telhan; 6:30-8 p.m.

8/3      Visiting Infants & Parents Hours; 9-11 a.m.

Morris Arboretum

Info: www.morrisarboretum.org

7/17    Guided Regularly Scheduled Matinee Tours; 11 a.m. Sundays through October.

8/3      Saturday Morning Live Water Features Tour; 11 a.m.

Readings and Signings

Penn Book Center

Info: www.pennbookcenter.com

7/18    Matthew Kepnes’ Ten Years a Nomad; 6:30-8 p.m.

7/25    Amos Mac & Rocco Kayiatos present Original Plumbing; 6:30-8 p.m.

7/27    Poetry Reading & Book Launch: Emily Wallis Hughes’ Sugar Factory; 2:30-5 p.m.

Special Events

7/17    A New Spin on Summer Nights; happy hour featuring music, cocktails and strolls through the Penn Museum; 5-7:30 p.m.; free with PennCard; info: www.penn.museum/summernights Also July 31, August 7, 14, 28 and September 4.

Deadlines: Almanac will resume weekly publication at the end of August. The deadline is August 12, 2019 for the August 27 issue and the September AT PENN calendar. The deadline for the September 3 issue is August 19, 2019.

Penn Museum Summer Events, Deals and Updates

  • July 16, 2019
  • vol 66 issue 1
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caption: An aerial view of Penn Museum.

Penn Museum has many events during the remainder of the summer—and some important announcements as construction continues.

For $5, or free with a PennCard, A New Spin on Summer Nights. Enjoy cocktails, music outdoors and stroll through the Museum, 5-7:30 p.m., July 17 and 31, August 7,14 and 28, and September 4. For info, visit www.penn.museum/summernights

Through August 14, World Wonders, a weekly program on Wednesdays, 11 a.m.-noon, features Daria World of Music on July 17, Traditions of India on July 24, and the Franklin Institute Presents Motion & Machines on July 31. These performances introduce children to a new world culture.

Storytime Expeditions is a program for families with young children, 11:30 a.m.-12:15 p.m., Fridays through August 30. It’s an interactive experience with touchable replica artifacts. Families can make a day of it—watch and talk to Penn Museum conservators at work in the Artifact Lab at 11 a.m., dig into lunch at the Pepper Mill Café (or bring your own lunch to eat in one of the courtyards), then get a deeper understanding of a different artifact with the Daily Dig, a 15-minute conversation at 1 p.m.

The Penn Museum encourages people to converse with strangers and practice their second-language skills with monthly Conversational Corners, where the Museum provides a topic for unfacilitated discussion in one of its iconic spaces. Highlighted languages include: Spanish, English, Italian and Mandarin. Upcoming discussions, July 13 and August 10, are free and open to the public; 10-11:30 a.m. in the Pepper Mill Café.

Start or maintain a morning exercise routine at a manageable pace with the Museum Mile on Thursday, July 11 and August 8 from 8:30-9:30 a.m. Ideal for beginners, it helps people of all ages to get moving through the Museum’s galleries. Stroll along a one-mile indoor walk through history—before the Museum officially opens for the day. Get in 2,000 steps as you walk by stone pharaohs of Egypt, Etruscan battle armor and Buddhist sculptures. Enter through the Kress) Entrance on the east side. The event is free and open to the public. Bring-your-own mug for $1 coffee at the Pepper Mill Café.

At the Museum Shop, July 14-21, visitors receive 10% off of Egyptian-made products to celebrate Wep Renpet (Egyptian New Year) and the discovery of the Rosetta Stone (July 19, 1799).

Starting Tuesday, July 30, visitors will be able to walk into the Museum using the Trescher Courtyard entrance. The Kress Entrance will continue to be available for use while the Museum continues with its Building Transformation. General admission will be reduced to $10, July 30-November 15. PennCard holders, including faculty, staff, and students, get free admission to the Museum.

Penn Museum: Blue Star

Now through Labor Day, military families can enjoy free admission to the Penn Museum through Blue Star Museums, which offers free admission to active duty, reservists, veterans with valid military or military family ID. See www.penn.museum

Crimes

Weekly Crime Reports

  • July 16, 2019
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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 July 1-7, 2019View 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 July 1-7, 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.

07/02/19         11:58 AM         3740 Hamilton Walk   Macbook Pro and iPad taken from office

07/02/19         12:47 PM         3740 Hamilton Walk   Temperature senor taken from office

07/02/19         1:33 PM           51 N 39th St               Male causing disturbance/Arrest

07/02/19         3:53 PM           3955 Baltimore Ave    Lawn chair taken from back yard

07/03/19         1:49 PM           300 S 34th St             Subject threatened police/Arrest

07/04/19         11:17 AM        4200 Locust St            Stolen automobile

07/05/19         12:30 AM        4006 Market St           Complainant knocked unconscious and cell phone stolen

07/05/19         2:57 PM           140 S 34th St             Clothing stolen

07/06/19         1:28 AM          3813 Chestnut St        Bill not paid

07/06/19         6:30 PM           3925 Walnut St           Household goods stolen

07/06/19         11:52 PM         3600 Sansom St         Credit card stolen and used

07/07/19         2:45 AM          3300 Walnut St            DUI/Arrest

07/07/19         10:45 PM         3744 Spruce St           Food stolen

18th District

Below are the Crimes Against Persons from the 18th District: 6 incidents (3 assaults and 3 aggravated assaults) with 4 arrests were reported from July 1-7, 2019 by the 18th District covering the Schuylkill River to 49th Street & Market Street to Woodland Avenue.

07/01/19         4:42 PM           4601 Chestnut St        Aggravated Assault

07/02/19         12:54 PM         3000 Market St           Assault/Arrest

07/02/19         12:54 PM         3000 Market St           Assault/Arrest

07/02/19         7:07 PM           4600 Chestnut St        Aggravated Assault/Arrest

07/03/19         2:47 PM           3400 Spruce St           Assault/Arrest

07/03/19         3:10 PM           416 S 46th St              Aggravated Assault

Bulletins

Chestnut Street Bridge Closure

  • July 16, 2019
  • vol 66 issue 1
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PENNDOT has notified Penn that the Chestnut Street Bridge will close for renovation August 5. The bridge will be closed to ALL TRAFFIC, including pedestrians, bicycles and cars, for approximately one year.

The closure will result in many changes to traffic patterns, signs and signals, along with volume and detours near campus. Commuters should anticipate traffic congestion and travel delays. Please adjust your commute accordingly.

For more info on the Bridge Project, go to http://chestnutstreetbridges.com/ and https://cms.business-services.upenn.edu/transportation/permits-passes/commuter-passes.html for info on detoured Penn Transit routes.

For the full University announcement, go to: https://www.publicsafety.upenn.edu/chestnut-street-bridge-closure-information

Summer Construction Limits SEPTA Service to University City Station

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This month, SEPTA’s Arsenal Interlocking Reconstruction Project will enter another phase: the Southwest Connection Improvement Program. Round-the-clock construction is scheduled for Saturday, July 20 through Sunday, August 4 (including weekdays), affecting the regional rail lines that normally stop at University City Rail Station.

During construction, the Airport and Airport shuttle bus, Media/Elwyn, and Wilmington/Newark lines will not stop at University City Station.

Select Chestnut Hill East, Fox Chase, Glenside, Lansdale/Doylestown, Manayunk/Norristown, Warminster and West Trenton Line trains will continue to provide service to University City Station. However, departure times for these lines may differ from their regular schedules.

Check www.septa.org/southwestconnection/ for details about modified public transportation service in the University City area.

ModPoMinute Series

  • July 16, 2019
  • vol 66 issue 1
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There are now 58 episodes of the ModPoMinute series, each a 5-minute conversation with poets about a poem. Each weekly episode features an improvised conversation about one poem. Join Al Filreis and Anna Strong Safford as they encounter both a thoughtful colleague and a compelling poem. ModPoMinute is hosted by the free & open online course called “ModPo,” sponsored by Penn’s Kelly Writers House.

The ModPoMinute YouTube channel: https://tinyurl.com/y6yk9o9k

The newest episode features a discussion about a poem by Larry Eigner: https://youtu.be/hEB_AMqD76k

One Step Ahead: Minimizing Risk Associated with Software Purchases on Procurement Cards

  • July 16, 2019
  • vol 66 issue 1
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Another tip in a series provided by the Offices of Information Systems & Computing and Audit, Compliance & Privacy

Making software purchases using the Penn Purchasing Card (PCard) can be challenging from an information security perspective since a purchase made with a PCard does not offer the same contractual protections found in a Purchase Order.  In many instances, the online procurement process when the payment made is via a credit card also entails accepting the supplier’s standard terms and conditions (i.e. a click-through action is required), which often protects the supplier more than it does the organization purchasing the software solution.   

Here are a few examples of contract terms from software providers that necessitate further examination before they are accepted by a buyer at Penn:

  • The supplier has the right to use and/or publicly share data entered into the system;
  • Users of the system are automatically signed up for either the supplier’s or the supplier’s partners promotional marketing;
  • Suppliers may change or remove functionality (and all the data contained or configured within that functionality) at any time; and
  • The supplier establishes its maximum liability at the cost of the software. This means that in the event of a breach that leaks sensitive Penn data, the software company is only liable for the annual cost that the University paid for the license.

Leveraging available resources at Penn to better understand the complexities of software suppliers’ terms and conditions is especially important when the data shared with the supplier is considered Medium or High risk as indicated on the chart from the Office of Audit, Compliance and Privacy: https://www.isc.upenn.edu/security/data-classification

Such resources include:

Contact Purchasing Services at Sourcing@upenn.edu if you have questions about interpretation and management of click-through contract language in an agreement before using a PCard to make the software purchase.

For additional tips, see the One Step Ahead link on the Information Security website: https://www.isc.upenn.edu/security/news-alerts#One-Step-Ahead

Workday@Penn is Here

  • July 16, 2019
  • vol 66 issue 1
  • Bulletins
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On July 1, 2019, the University launched Workday@Penn, the new faculty affairs, human resources, and payroll system—a major milestone in Penn’s people-centered strategy.

Workday@Penn transforms how Penn delivers human capital management services such as staff recruitment, faculty and staff benefits administration, compensation, payroll, time entry, academic appointment information, and leaves of absence. It enables simplified and integrated processes, allowing the University community to work more efficiently and collaboratively.

The new system provides various advantages for faculty, staff, postdocs, and student workers, including:

Self-Service: Workday Self Service enables the management of one’s own personal information, such as pay elections (up to three direct deposit accounts) and contact information.

Improved Workflow: In addition to a personalized inbox and notifications, Workday allows users to track the status of various tasks, which is especially helpful for processes involving multiple parties.

Increased Visibility: Workday provides increased transparency into supervisory organizations, which is how Workday organizes people and processes.

An Integrated System: In Workday, all users—exempt and non-exempt staff, faculty, postdocs, student workers and colleagues from other organizations who have managerial or professional responsibilities at Penn —sign into one system, where information is stored and managed.

Mobile-Friendly: Workday allows secure access to information through browsers on mobile devices.

Security: Workday is a state-of-the-art, cloud-based solution that is updated regularly to stay current with compliance and risk conditions. It uses a number of approaches to ensure the security of Penn data.

Just the Start: July 1 is just the start, as data improves and the community learns and adapts. Workday undergoes continuous innovation and improvement, with two major releases per year.

Most faculty, staff, postdocs and student workers who only use Workday@Penn as a self-service platform may access a variety of online videos and tools to help step through different processes. Managers have optional online training videos. Those who have robust faculty affairs, human resources, or business roles in Workday undergo required training.

For more support, knowledgeable Penn Employee Solution Center Specialists are available Monday through Wednesday and Friday, 9 a.m.-5 p.m., and Thursday 9 a.m.-4 p.m. You can reach them by calling (215) 898-7372 or by sending an email to hcmsolutioncenter@upenn.edu

Family Medical Leave and Paid Parental Leave Application Changes

  • July 16, 2019
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As of July 1, 2019, the way you apply for Family Medical Leave (FML), Short-Term Disability (STD) and Paid Parental Leave (PPL) is changing. Through Workday, there is a self-service portal to initiate the leave request process. In addition, the University will be working with a third-party partner, Broadspire, to review and approve new leaves.

To apply for FML or PPL leaves after July 1, 2019, log into Workday and follow the steps outlined in the Workday tip sheet and summarized below.

  • Go to the Workday “Time Off and Leave Application”
  • Click on “Request Leave of Absence”
  • Enter the “First Day of Leave” and the “Estimated Last Day of Leave”
  • Click on Leave Type “FMLA” or “PPL” and scroll down to locate the type of FMLA or PPL leave you are requesting
  • Once the request is submitted, you will receive a notice to contact Broadspire. To complete your leave request you must either call Broadspire at (866) 357-1122 or complete an intake form that can be emailed to Broadspire (you will be directed to the link for these forms after you complete the Workday steps). Please keep in mind that your submission will not be complete until you call Broadspire and provide the required information. Broadspire will determine whether your leave will qualify for short-term disability and will supply you with the appropriate paperwork.

After July 1, 2019, no FML, STD or PPL paperwork should be sent to the FMLA Administrator at the University, or to your department HR administrator. Any leaves that are in progress as of July 1, 2019 will automatically be transferred to Broadspire. A Broadspire representative will contact you about taking over administration of your leave.

If you are currently on an approved FML, PPL or STD leave, there will be no changes to your approval. If your request for a FML, PPL or STD leave is pending as of July 1, 2019, Broadspire will take over the review process and will communicate a decision to you. Any certification form(s) you had previously submitted to your employer will be shared with Broadspire. Any new certification form(s) you will need to submit as of July 1, 2019 must be mailed or faxed to Broadspire at:

Broadspire Services Inc.

PO Box 14773

Lexington, KY 40512

Fax: (859) 550-2744

—Division of Human Resources

Volunteer Opportunities

  • July 16, 2019
  • vol 66 issue 1
  • Bulletins
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Dear Penn Community,

Thank you for your spirit of volunteerism. Many benefit from your willingness to share. We receive many expressions of gratitude from community members and agencies we have partnered with. The University community continues to work towards being good neighbors in our shared community. We thank you for your overwhelming support and for your generosity. Let us help you volunteer! The following are volunteer activities available to the Penn community:

School Supplies Drive August 6-23: Don’t forget to collect school supplies for the Annual Penn Volunteers in Public Service School Supplies Drive.  Support school children by providing books, pens, pencils, book bags, calculators, crayons, rulers, dictionaries, elementary school story books and other items children need to help them be successful in school. Below is a list of suggested items for donation:

BindersDividersRulersNotebooks
DictionariesStaplersBookbagsBookcovers
Glue/TapeCalculatorsMarkersPencil cases
CrayonsPencilsFoldersLunch Boxes/Bags
UmbrellasCDs and DVDsPensSchoolbags

Please feel free to take donations to any of the following convenient locations.

Contact Isabel Mapp at sammapp@upenn.edu for additional information.

President's Office100 College HallBrenda Gonzalez898-0447
Provost Office353B 3401 Walnut StSusan Curran898-6841
Human Resources600 Franklin Bldg.Syreeta Gary898-6018
Van Pelt LibraryIPC, Room 454Rachelle Nelson898-9048
Netter Center111 S. 38th St., 2nd FloorIsabel Mapp898-2020
ISC265C 3401 Walnut StMaureen Goldsmith573-8771
Stouffer Commons3702 Spruce StLinda Kromer898-8240
Wharton1000 SH-DHJennifer O'Keefe898-1092
ISC203A Sansom WestKathie Ritchie573-3561
Research Services5th Floor, Franklin Bldg.Elizabeth Peloso573-6710
FMC2929 Walnut/Suite 1st FloorGretchen Ekeland898-3633
Comptroller's Office312 Franklin Bldg.Celestine Silverman898-7593
FRES3101 Walnut StCarole Mercaldo573-8795
Physics & AstronomyDRL 2E5Michelle Last 898-5954
NursingFagin Hall, 3rd/4th Floor MailroomPat Adams573-1630
Af-Am Resource Center3643 Locust WalkColleen Winn898-0104

Become a Mentor in the Penn Workplace Mentoring Program! Encourage 7th graders from a local school to do well in school. Talk to them about the importance of college. Share your area of expertise in your job with them and help them to think about their futures. Make a difference in the life of a young person! Mentors meet with students once a month from September-May. All sessions are held on Penn’s campus. Training is held in September. Volunteer today. Contact Isabel Mapp at sammapp@upenn.edu for additional information.

Teach at the University Assisted Community School (UACS Nights): Have a special talent? Want to teach it to members of the surrounding community? Our exciting program, University Assisted Community Schools Nights, continues. Teach adult learners your expertise. Teach resume writing, interviewing skills, computers, employment prep, dance, hair braiding, cooking and/or a subject you are passionate about. Teach once a week for a one- or two-hour period for four to six weeks. We also welcome classes that can be taught in one session. Classes are normally held from 6-8 p.m. Convenient location TBA. Contact Isabel Mapp at sammapp@upenn.edu  for more information.Become a Mentor in the Penn Workplace Mentoring Program! Encourage 7th graders from a local school to do well in school. Talk to them about the importance of college. Share your area of expertise in your job with them and help them to think about their futures. Make a difference in the life of a young person! Mentors meet with students once a month from September-May. All sessions are held on Penn’s campus. Training is held in September. Volunteer today. Contact Isabel Mapp at sammapp@upenn.edu for additional information.

Penn Adopts A Classroom: An opportunity for you and your colleagues to “adopt” a Philadelphia school classroom and help teachers with needed supplies for their rooms. Provide needed classroom items like reams of paper, pens, pencils, tissues, hand sanitizer, notebooks, folders, glue sticks, disinfecting wipes, calculators, index cards, scissors, backpacks, pencil sharpeners, dividers, protractors, highlighters, markers, construction paper, book socks, combination locks, personal organizers, Post-Its, tape, staplers and staples, etc. Work with classrooms involved in Community Schools operated by the Netter Center for Community Partnerships. Schools include Lea,  Sayre, West, and Comegys. You could select the age group you prefer. A classroom would be assigned to you with a wish-list. You and your colleagues can spend the summer collecting the supplies. Arrangements will be made in September for you to make your donations to your adopted class. Contact Isabel Mapp at sammapp@upenn.edu for additional information.

Become a Dropsite Volunteer: Dropsite volunteers are located throughout the University and provide the site for collections during our annual school, food, gift and change drives. All that is required is for you to set up a collection area, put up a flyer and collect the donations.  There are only approximately 3-4 activities per year. Contact Isabel Mapp at sammapp@pobox.upenn.edu for more details.

Leftover conference bags, t-shirts, pens, etc.? Donate them to Penn VIPS.  We will share them with school children and members of the community. Contact Isabel Mapp at sammapp@upenn.edu  for additional information.

Putts, Prana and Peace event: The day will include a yoga/meditation session, along with the mini-golf, and a lunch for at-risk youth. Several days are available between August 19-30. Volunteers interact with the kids in the programming by participating in a round of miniature golf with them. If you are interested, contact Michael Kostinas michaelk@shelteredyoga.org

—Isabel Sampson-Mapp, Associate Director, Netter Center for Community Partnerships

Office of Government and Community Affairs

Correction

  • July 16, 2019
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caption: Serena Mayericaption: Sharon LorenzoIn the May 28, 2019 issue, the “Penn Law 2019 Teaching Awards” incorrectly switched the captions of two photos: Serena Mayeri and Sharon Lorenzo. We regret the error. ­—Eds.

Almanac is Hiring!

  • July 16, 2019
  • vol 66 issue 1
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Almanac is the University of Pennsylvania’s weekly journal of record, opinion and news. We publish in print and online at www.upenn.edu/almanac

We’re looking for students who have strong attention to detail, good communication skills and the ability to work independently. Microsoft Office experience required; Photoshop, InDesign and CMS website experience preferred. Hours are flexible between Monday-Friday, 9 a.m.-5 p.m. All majors and years are encouraged to apply in August.

Email your resume to Louise Emerick at emerick@upenn.edu along with relevant samples. Include the hours you are available to work during the fall semester. Positions are also posted on the Student Employment website.