University of Pennsylvania

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University of Pennsylvania commencement procession.

The University of Pennsylvania gives the following descriptive information:

At the University of Pennsylvania, you'll find a historic, Ivy League school with highly selective admissions and a history of innovation in interdisciplinary education and scholarship. You'll also find a picturesque campus amidst a dynamic city and a world-class research institution.

Penn carries on the principles and spirit of its founder, Benjamin Franklin: entrepreneurship, invention, outreach, and a pragmatic love of knowledge. Franklin's practical outlook has remained a driving force in the university's development.


Penn traces its origins to 1740 when a trust was formed to establish the Charity School of Philadelphia. Later, in 1749, Benjamin Franklin presented his vision for a new type of learning institution, that unlike other American Colonial colleges, would not focus on education for the clergy, but would instead prepare students for lives of business and public service. The proposed program of study would become the nation's first modern liberal arts curriculum. When, in 1750, Franklin and the first Trustees purchased Penn's first campus, they also assumed responsibility for the Charity School (though it had never opened, the Trust was still alive and well). Both the Academy and the Charity School opened in 1751.

More than 250 years later, Penn continues to blaze trails in education. It is home to the nation's first medical school, which added as early as 1874, a university teaching hospital. The University is also the birthplace of technological invention. In 1946, Penn introduced ENIAC, the world's first electronic, large-scale, general-purpose digital computer.

See Also

A Career at Penn * AdmitSee * Barbara and Edward Netter Center for Community Partnerships * Bridges to Wealth * The Center for Carceral Communities * CommuniTech * The Daily Pennsylvanian * ENIAC At U Penn * Fisher Fine Arts Library * Forward Promise * Goldring Reentry Initiative (GRI) * Institute of Contemporary Art (ICA) * Kelly Writers House * MentorTech Ventures * Morris Arboretum of the University of Pennsylvania * Natives at Penn (NAP) * Penn Center for Innovation (PCI) * Penn Hillel * Penn Linguistics Conference (PLC) * Penn Medicine * Penn Vet * Penn Vet Behavior * PennApps * Pennovation Center * The Pennsylvania Gazette * Philadelphia Writing Project * PlanPhilly * Quechua At Penn * The Rotunda * University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology * Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania * The Woodlands * World Cafe Live * WQHS Radio * WXPN