University of Pennsylvania

Template:Infobox University2 The University of Pennsylvania (commonly referred to as Penn or UPenn, although the former is the preferred and recognized nickname of the University) is a private university in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and a member of the Ivy League. Penn is considered to be a leader in the sciences, the humanities, law, medicine, education, engineering and business. Shanghai Jiao Tong University World Ranking (2004) (


About Penn

A faculty of about 4,500 professors serves about 10,000 undergraduate and 9,000 graduate and professional students; the research community includes 1,000 faculty, 1,000 postdoctoral fellows, 3,000 graduate students, and 5,000 support staff, with a budget of $4.25 billion, annually, alongside a payroll of $2.183 billion. Penn has the largest budget within the Ivy League. Admissions are noted among the most selective in the United States, The The Atlantic Monthly ranks it as the eighth most selective college in the United States (after MIT, Princeton, Caltech, Yale, Harvard, Stanford and Columbia), and the Princeton Review ranks it as the sixth most selective (after MIT, Princeton, Caltech, Yale, Harvard). Since 2001, Penn has been ranked among the top five universities by the annual US News & World Report Best College Survey. In the 2005 issue, Penn holds the number four spot, after Harvard, Princeton, and Yale.

Some of Penn's more notable programs are its School of Veterinary Medicine, Wharton School of business, School of Medicine, School of Arts and Sciences, Law School, Nursing School, Annenberg School for Communication, School of Engineering and Applied Science, School of Education, and School of Social Work. It also contains many well-known departments including English, History, Economics, Philosophy, Computer Science, Biology, Psychology and Anthropology. It is also noted for its Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology.

Penn is an international leader in interdisciplinary programs. In addition to numerous cross-disciplinary majors and joint-degree programs, Penn is home to interdisciplinary institutions such as the Institute for Medicine and Engineering, the Joseph H. Lauder Institute for Management and International Studies, the Institute for Research in Cognitive Science, the Executive Master's in Technology Management Program, the Huntsman Program in International Studies and Business, and the Jerome Fisher Management and Technology Program.

The first medical school in the United States was founded at Penn in 1765. In 1786 Penn was chartered by the state as the first "university" in America. Penn hosts the country's second college of veterinary medicine, and the only college to offer the degree 'VMD' instead of 'DVM' for its veterinary graduates. The world's first all-electronic computer, ENIAC was built at Penn's Moore School of Electrical Engineering.

Located in downtown Philadelphia for over a century, the campus was moved across the Schuylkill River to West Philadelphia in 1872, where it has remained. The present campus covers over 260 urban acres (1 km²). Recent improvements to the surrounding neighborhoods include the opening of several restaurants, a large grocery store, and a movie theater on the western edge of campus.

The University of Pennsylvania is often confused with the Pennsylvania State University (commonly referred to as "Penn State"), another research-oriented (but public) university with the main campus located in the geographic center of Pennsylvania in State College.

Penn's sports teams are called the Quakers. They participate in the Ivy League and the NCAA's Division I (Division I-AA for football). In recent decades they often have been league champions in football (12 times from 1982 to 2003) and basketball (21 times from 1970 to 2004). The Quakers are also part of the Philadelphia Big 5 traditional basketball rivalries.

Penn's home court, the Palestra, is an arena used for Big Five contests as well as high-school sporting events, and Franklin Field, where the Quakers play football, hosts the annual collegiate track and field event "the Penn Relays (," and once was the home field of the National Football League's Philadelphia Eagles. It was also the site of the early Army-Navy football games. Franklin Field was also the home to the first commercially-televised football game, and was also the first stadium to sport two tiers.

Penn has been noted for its strong student culture, particularly award-winning a cappella groups, which range from jazz (Penn Counterparts), to traditional groups such as PennSix and Off the Beat to Penn Masala — the world's premier Hindi group, which has received global acclaim. Penn is also recognized for it's premier all-male a cappella group, the Chord on Blues. The University of Pennsylvania Glee Club is the oldest continually-performing collegiate performance group in the United States, having been founded in 1862. Penn Singers is the only collegiate group in the United States to have performed all but one of the Gilbert and Sullivan operettas. The Philomathean Society, Penn's student literary society, was founded in 1813 and is the oldest continuously-existing collegiate literary society in the United States. Mask and Wig, founded in 1889, is the oldest performing comedy group in the nation, and the Pennsylvania Punch Bowl is one of the nation's oldest humor magazines. The Daily Pennsylvanian, consistently ranked as one of the best student newspapers in the country, has been published since 1885. The University's Political Science Department is known for publishing a semesterly scholarly journal of undergraduate research called "Sound Politicks." The journal is student-run and is widely noted for the originality and quality of the articles it publishes. It accepts submissions from Penn students year round.

University of Pennsylvania borders Drexel University. Also nearby is the University City High School (


In 1749, eager to create a college to educate future generations, Benjamin Franklin wrote and circulated a pamphlet titled "Proposals for the Education of Youth in Pensilvania." Unlike the other four American Colonial colleges that existed at the time -- Harvard, William and Mary, Yale, and Princeton -- Franklin's new school would not focus on education for the clergy. He advocated an innovative concept of higher education, one which would teach both the ornamental knowledge of the arts and the practical skills necessary for making a living and doing public service. The proposed program of study became the nation's first modern liberal arts curriculum.

Ben Franklin assembled a board of trustees from among the leading citizens of the city, the first such non-sectarian board in America, and looked about for the least costly way to build a campus.

In 1740, a group of working class Philadelphians had decided to erect a great preaching hall for the evangelist George Whitefield. It was the largest building in the city, and it was also planned to serve as a charity school for "the instruction of poor children." The fundraising, however, for both the building and the school had fallen short and the plans for both chapel and school were suspended. Franklin saw an opportunity to open his Academy quickly and inexpensively and in 1751 the Academy, using the great hall at 4th and Arch Streets, took in its first students. A charity school also was opened in accordance with the intentions of the original "New Building" donors.

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The Quadrangle, one of Penn's undergraduate residence halls

The University cites the earlier date as its founding, which enables it to claim to be older than its athletic archrival Princeton. However it is the fifth-oldest college in the United States.

Penn has continued that innovative tradition with the founding of the first university teaching hospital in 1874; the creation of the Wharton School, the world's first collegiate school of business, in 1881; the construction of Houston Hall, the first American student union building, in 1896; and the building of ENIAC, the world's first electronic, large-scale, general-purpose digital computer in 1946.

Nobel prize winners

  • Alan MacDiarmid - 2000 Nobel prize in Chemistry
  • Raymond Davis - 2002 Nobel prize in Physics for "pioneering contributions to astrophysics, in particular for the detection of cosmic neutrinos."
  • Christian B. Anfinsen, Nobel prize winner in Chemistry
  • Michael S. Brown, Nobel prize winner in Chemistry
  • Lawrence Klein - 1980 Nobel prize in Economics "for the creation of economic models and their application to the analysis of economic fluctuations and economic policies."

Penn Traditions

Toast Throwing

As a sign of school pride, crowds of Quaker fans perform a unique ritual. After the third quarter of football games, spirited onlookers unite in the singing of "Drink a Highball." In years long past, students would literally make a toast to the success of Penn's athletic teams. During Prohibition, stubborn students insisted on keeping their tradition - since they could not use alcohol, they had no choice but to literally "toast" Penn. As the last line, "Here's a toast to dear old Penn," is sung, the fans send toast hurling through the air onto the sidelines. Also, in more recent years, some students have become more creative in their choice of projectiles, and it is not rare to see a hail of bagels or donuts, or even a loaf of French bread come flying down from the stands.

Befriending Ben

Penn students show love to the founder of their school, Benjamin Franklin, by paying special attention to the statues and monuments throughout campus. Students will often dress Ben up with hats and neckties. Students and tourists often take pictures sitting on Ben's lap or in other fun and friendly poses.

Goal Post Tossing

In past years, the Penn Quakers have won the Ivy League championship, sending the jubilant fans into a frenzy. In celebration, the fans ripped down the goal posts and tossed them into the Schuylkill River. This is one Penn tradition that the administration hopes is short-lived.

Econ Scream

At midnight on the eve of the first Economics 001 midterm, students ease their frustrations by participating in a campus-wide shout! Some brave students have even been known to streak through the Quad . . .

Class Day and Hey Day

In April, several class traditions are celebrated. Class Day, which began in 1865 to supplement the final graduation exercises, celebrates the progression of all classes and the departure of the seniors. In 1916, this day merged with Straw Hat Day and became the "day of two events." In 1931, Hey Day arose from these two celebrations. On this day, the juniors gather on Hill Field for a picnic, don straw "skimmers" and canes, and march triumphantly through campus. The procession tradition began in 1949. When the procession reaches College Hall, the students make an arch with their canes to greet the President of the University. The outgoing and incoming senior class presidents then give speeches, and the juniors are "officially" declared seniors. In recent years, the current senior class pelts the juniors with shaving cream, chocolate sauce, flour and other condiments.

The Compass

Showcasing their superstitious side, Penn students avoid stepping over the tiled compass on the scenic Locust Walk. Supposedly, the compass serves to guide freshmen through their first year; stepping over it will put a freshman in danger of failing his/her first midterms.

Ivy Day

One of the oldest Penn traditions is Ivy Day, when the graduating class plants ivy by a building, and an "Ivy Stone" is placed on the building to commemorate the occasion. In 1981, the day was officially moved to the Saturday before Commencement. Also on this day, the prestigious Spoon, Bowl, Cane, and Spade awards are given, honoring four senior men; and the Hottel, Harnwell, Goddard, and Brownlee awards are presented to honor four senior women. During the celebration, a noted individual who is chosen by the class gives an address. Recent Ivy Day addresses have been presented by Penn Parent Joan Rivers, former Philadelphia Mayor and current Governor of Pennsylvania Ed Rendell, and basketball player Julius Erving (Dr. J).

Noted alumni

Some noted University of Pennsylvania alumni:

There are numerous other past and present U.S. Ambassadors, members of congress, governors, and cabinet members, and corporate leaders.

Notable professors

  • Dr. Christian B. Anfinsen: Nobel Prize winner in Chemistry
  • Dr. Baruch Blumberg: Nobel Prize winner in Medicine
  • Dr. Raymond Davis, Jr.: Nobel Prize winner in Physics
  • Dr. Gerald Edelman: Nobel Prize winner in Medicine
  • Dr. Ragnar Granit: Nobel Prize winner in Medicine
  • Dr. Haldan K. Hartline: Nobel Prize winner in Medicine
  • Dr. Robert Hofstadter: Nobel Prize winner in Physics
  • Dr. Lawrence Klein: Nobel Prize winner in Economics
  • Dr. Simon Kuznets: Nobel Prize winner in Economics
  • Dr. J. Robert Schrieffer: Nobel Prize winner in Physics
  • Dr. Steven Hahn - Pullitzer Prize winner, Roy F. and Jeannette P. Nichols Professor of History
  • Matt Blaze - Associate Professor - Computer Science Department
  • Robert F. Boruch - University Trustee Chair Professor, Graduate School of Education
  • John Bowker (adjunct professor)
  • Eugenio Calabi - Thomas A. Scott Professor of Mathematics Emeritus - Mathematics Department
  • Arthur Caplan
  • Britton Chance
  • Thomas Childers - Department of History
  • Peter Conn - Andrea Mitchell Term Professor of English
  • Francis X. Diebold - W.P. Carey Term Professor in Economics - Economics Department
  • John DiIulio - Department of Political Science
  • Michael Eric Dyson
  • Peter J. Freyd - Professor of Mathematics - Mathematics Department
  • Stephen Gale - Terrorism expert-Dept. of Political Science.
  • David Harbater - E. Otis Kendall Professor of Mathematics - Mathematics Department
  • Kathleen Hall Jamieson - University of Pennsylvania author and media analyst.
  • Aravind Joshi - Henry Salvatori Professor of Computer and Cognitive Science - Computer Science Department
  • Richard Kadison - Gustave C. Kuemmerle Professor of Mathematics - Mathematics Department
  • Donald F. Kettl - Stanley I. Sheerr Endowed Term Professor in the Social Sciences, Professor of Political Science & Director of the Fels Institute of Government
  • Bruce Kuklick - Roy F. and Jeannette P. Nichols Professor of American History - History Department
  • William Labov - Professor of linguistics
  • Mitch Marcus - RCA Professor of Artificial Intelligence - Computer Science Department
  • Walter McDougall - Department of History
  • Jeremy McInerney (Associate Professor) - Classical Studies Department
  • Fernando Pereira - Andrew and Debra Rachleff Professor of Computer Science - Computer Science Department
  • Jeremy Siegel - Department of Finance
  • Rogers Smith - Christopher H. Browne Distinguished Professor of Political Science - Political Science Department
  • Peter Stallybrass - Walter H. and Leonore C. Annenberg Professor in the Humanities - English Department
  • Tufuku Zuberi


Penn offers almost 90 majors across its four undergraduate schools:

College of Arts and Sciences:

School of Engineering and Applied Science:

Wharton School of Business:

  • Accounting
  • Actuarial Science
  • Business and Public Policy
  • Entrepreneurship (second concentration only)
  • Environmental Policy and Management
  • Finance
  • Global Analysis (second concentration only)
  • Healthcare Management and Policy
  • Insurance and Risk Management
  • Legal Studies (second concentration only)
  • Management
  • Managing Electronic Commerce (second concentration only)
  • Marketing
  • Marketing and Communication (dual concentration)
  • Operations and Information Management
  • Real Estate
  • Statistics
  • Transportation

Nursing School:

  • Nursing and Health Care Management
  • Nursing and Technology

Joint-Degree Programs

Penn offers specialized joint-degree programs, which award candidates degrees from multiple schools at the University upon completion of graduation criteria of both schools:

Dual Degree programs are also available, although they sometimes lack the flexibility of the Joint-Degree Programs.

External links


Ivy League:
Brown University | Columbia University | Cornell University | Dartmouth College | Harvard University | University of Pennsylvania | Princeton University | Yale University
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Ivy League

ja:ペンシルバニア大学 de:University of Pennsylvania fr:Universit de Pennsylvanie


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