Monthly Archives: April 2013

5th Reunion Preview

Author: Stephanie Yee, C’08

My 5th Reunion is in 10 days, and I am bursting with excitement! The Reunion Outreach Committee has been working tirelessly for many months to make sure that the Class of 2008 has an incredible and unforgettable reunion. Here are a few events that 08ers can look forward to next weekend.

Friday, May 10th, 10 PM – 2 AM
3925 Walnut Street

Two bars (complete with drink specials) will be reserved for the Class of 2008 in the restaurant’s lower terrace.

Celebr(08) on Friday night at City Tap House.

Celebr(08) on Friday night at City Tap House.


Saturday, May 11th, 10:30 AM – 11:30 AM
Location: Steinberg-Dietrich Hall, 3620 Locust Walk, Room 1206
Fellow alums will talk about their start-ups in various fields – including business, social, tech, and non-profit. 08ers have accomplished so much since graduation, and this panel highlights how several alums are carving their own path to success.


Jason Gurwin, Co-Founder and CEO of Pushpins

Raymond John, Co-Founder and President of 12+

Abe Kwon, Founder and Chairman of 12+

Rachit Shukla, Founder, Partner, and CEO of Two Toasters

Brian Wang, Co-Founder and CEO of Fitocracy

Michael Young, Co-Founder and Director, Technology Development of Innova Dynamics

The founders of these companies are all Penn 2008 alumni. Come hear them talk about entrepreneurship and start-ups.

The founders of these companies are all Penn 2008 alumni. Come hear them talk about entrepreneurship and start-ups.


Saturday, May 11th

Parade line-up will be at 11:45 AM (on Locust Walk between 36th and 37th, complete with drinks and snacks to get the party started) and the parade is from 12:00 PM – 12:30 PM.

Relive Hey Day by marching down Locust Walk with other 08ers.

Relive Hey Day by marching down Locust Walk with other 08ers.



Saturday, May 11th, 12:30 PM – 3:30 PM, Hill Field

2008 classmates, families and guests are invited to enjoy “One Last Fling,” a throwback to Spring Fling. This picnic buffet includes performing student groups, live music, entertainment – and most importantly –  fried Oreos!

Remember fried oreos at Fling? There will be fried Oreos at the Saturday picnic!

Remember fried Oreos at Fling? There will be fried Oreos at the Saturday picnic!


Saturday, May 11th, 9 PM – 1 AM

Perelman Quadrangle, Wynn Commons Tent, 3417 Spruce Street

Celebr(08) your return to Penn by going back to where it all started. Join us for an exciting evening with good food, great friends, an open bar, and a killer dance floor. Share your personal updates and amazing memories with classmates, and make this party the highlight of our Alumni Weekend. Dress to impress!

The Saturday night party is the big event! Iron Chef Jose Garces is catering the party, so come hungry!

The Saturday night party is the big event! Iron Chef Jose Garces is catering the party, so come hungry!


Don’t forget to register! Advance registration ends this Friday. 5th reunion classmates can register here. But you don’t have to be celebrating a reunion to attend. All alumni are welcome and can still register online here.


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Filed under 5th Reunion, Alumni Perspective, Alumni Weekend, Reunions

A Lifetime of Learning

Author: Lisa Ellen Niver, CAS ’89

berger.rI did not realize when I picked Penn (after being admitted early decision in December 1984), that class would still be in session in 2013 while traveling on a local bus in Nepal! During this trip, I read Contagious, Why Things Catch On, because as a traveler, teacher, and writer it sounded extremely compelling. I too wanted to learn how to “create contagious content!”

As Wharton marketing professor, Jonah Berger, explains in the book, “putting up a Facebook page or tweeting doesn’t mean anyone will notice or spread the word. 50% of YouTube videos have fewer than five hundred views. Only one-third of 1 percent get more than 1 million.” We actually have several videos over five hundred views and our We Said Go Travel YouTube channel, so that was good to learn. It is incredible to me that while on sabbatical in Asia, I can study with the award-winning Wharton “Iron Prof” and learn exactly the lessons I need next for my personal and professional life!

I also recently read  Made to Stick, by Chip and Dan Heath. Chip Heath was Berger’s graduate school mentor and while that book was helpful–Contagious’ “six key STEPPS” gave me new tools to propel my professional site to higher numbers and more views by using “the six principles of contagiousness: products or ideas that contain Social Currency and are Triggered, Emotional, Public, Practically Valued and wrapped into Stories.”

As a writer, the final emphasis on stories is of particular interest to me. Berger says: “Stories are an important source of cultural learning that help us make sense of the world. Information travels under the guise of what seems like idle chatter.” I hope that sharing our journeys will inspire others and soon be more and more contagious encouraging all to participate in our global community of travelers and writers.

I recommend getting a copy of Professor Berger’s book so you can “build a Social currency-laden, Triggered, Emotional, Public, Practically Valuable Trojan Horse, but don’t forget to hide your message inside. Make sure your desired information is so embedded into the plot that people cannot tell the story without it.”

Reading this book, I realized that our recent Inspiration Travel Writing Contest had so much traction as we used triggers (the contest ended on Valentine’s Day), emotions, and financial incentives. I will put my learning to work and hope that our Independence Travel Writing Contest (running from May 11 to July 4, no entry fee, and an even more valuable prizes).

Thank you to the Penn community for my past and continuing education! It is phenomenal that nearly twenty-five years after graduation I can still learn from Penn Profs and in a new digital way. As our Penn motto states, “We will find a way or we will make one.” Thank you, Professor Berger, for new tools for building a contagious community.

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“To succeed, jump as quickly at opportunities as you do at conclusions.”

~Benjamin Franklin

Author: Patrick Bredehoft

Future Interviewers

As we look ahead a mere few weeks to the graduation of Penn’s Class of 2013, those of us at the Penn Alumni Interview Program are taking Ben Franklin’s thoughts about opportunity to heart.  With the Interview Program now under the umbrella of Alumni Relations, we’ve found a host of opportunities to engage these alumni-to-be in our global efforts to offer an interview to every Penn applicant.

Yesterday was Hey Day, where current Penn juniors mark a collective rite-of-passage in becoming seniors. It was also Final Toast, where current seniors look ahead to their lives beyond Penn, and to their new roles as university alumni. Final Toast prompts no shortage of nostalgia for the hundreds of students who attend, but it’s also a venue to discuss what it means to be an alumnus or an alumna of America’s first university—these young alumni will have opportunities to serve, to join new communities, and to make profound contributions wherever they go.

For more than fifty years, Penn alumni have been offering interviews to prospective students, in ever-increasing numbers. This past year, Penn alumni interviewed more than 22,000 students, hailing from all 50 states and from 127 countries. No matter where a young alumna is headed (and many are still trying to figure that out!), she will have the opportunity to meet with other alumni interviewers, as well as to offer something of her time at Penn to applicants who are eager to learn more.

We’re ecstatic to have registered so many Penn ’13 grads as alumni interviewers; we hope that by the time these students don their caps and gowns, more than 500 of them will have joined the Interview Program.

As we’ve spoken with these seniors, we’ve been amazed by the profound and lasting impact that this particular tradition has had on Penn’s students. Many of the seniors who sought us out had a similar refrain: “When I applied to Penn, my alumni interviewer made me even more interested in the university.  I swore that if I went to Penn, I would conduct interviews myself after I graduated.” Equally exciting for us is the second-most common comment we hear from seniors: “When I applied to Penn, I was never offered an interview.  I promised myself that if I went to Penn, I would make sure that I conducted interviews after I graduated.”

Whether young alumni join in this effort because they benefited from the experience directly, or because they want to offer future students an opportunity they never had themselves, we’re glad to be a part of a decades-old Penn tradition that provides a wonderful opportunity for applicants and alumni alike.

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Filed under Interview Program, Patrick B.

My Top Penn List: Time to Shine

Author: Casey Ryan, C’95

Last Friday, Penn continued to make history with one of the biggest celebrations in the University: unveiling the Time to Shine multimedia show and showering appreciation on our donors, supports, alumni and friends with the festivities on Penn Park.

By now, you may have seen some of the thousands of images that capture the excitement of our spectacular, especially since all alumni and friends were invited to join in the extravaganza by tweeting or instagramming with the hashtag, #PennTimeToShine. The reaction was amazing and I wanted to share with you my favorite 10 tweeted or instagrammed moments from last Friday.  (Also feel free to check out our Proud Penn twitter users by clicking their handles – The opinions and views expressed through these twitter accounts are the opinions of those individuals and do not reflect the opinions or views of the University or myself.)


10. @wharton: New York City artist Hani Shihada created a sidewalk chalk mural in celebration of #penntimetoshine:


9. @shivkapoor21: Proud Penn Alum! #penntimetoshine #upenn #epic


8. @xulucy: #penntimetoshine @Penn #penncommence2013 #penn #quaker love #schoolspirit @ Penn Park


7. @emilieckl: My photo on the big screen!!! Best day ever!!! #penntimetoshine


6. @jacob_henner: #PennTimeToShine Penn Park sight line @Penn


5. @jornthal: Pre-train and john legend concert at #penntimetoshine


4.  @enikaselby: #penntimetoshine #train #johnlegend


3. @daniellololol: Nothing says Penn pride like glitter!!! #naildesign #nails #nailart #nailpolish #PennTimeToShine


2. @xandriajames: Give me the green light @johnlegend #penn #johnlegend #penntimetoshine #perfection #iloveyou


1. @momofink: amazing moment, amazing show @Penn! #penntimetoshine RT @train: Philadelphia Angels in a tribute to Boston!

For additional social media accounts of Time To Shine, please visit our Penn Athletics’ You Tube page for a time-lapse video of our Penn Park event, taken from the very top of Franklin Field and visit our Storify page, Making History — It’s Time to Shine, highlighting many of the tweets and pictures sent during the night at

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Filed under Alumni Perspective, Campaign, Casey R., Top Ten

Hey Day 1993 – 21 Years Later

By Kiera Reilly, C’93  @KieraReilly

As the Junior Class celebrates Hey Day today, the Class of 1993 is busy preparing for our 20th reunion in just a few short weeks. But it’s also a good time to think back and remember our time as students. It’s hard to believe that twenty-one years ago, on April 24, 1992, we were strutting down Locust Walk about to become Seniors and officially begin our last year at Penn.

Remember the bookstore wall? Huntsman Hall now stands where this wall was. Hey Day is coming - buy your hat, canes and shirts!

Remember the bookstore wall? Huntsman Hall now stands where this wall was. Hey Day is coming – buy your hat, canes and shirts!

I asked my classmates to share their memories of Hey Day, but no one was willing to fess up and share anything on the record. So, here is Hey Day 1993…names withheld to protect the innocent.

Anonymous Classmate #1

OMG, Hey Day! I had 3 job offers and was deciding between them. Completely forgot that a rep from one of the 3 firms was coming to meet me that day to talk about his company. After many, many cocktails, I stumbled back to off-campus housing midday in my red t-shirt and broken hat to find him sitting on my front steps. I could hardly put 2 words together. Cheers to my housemates who saved the day and invited him into our filthy stinking apartment and got him completely wasted. Needless to say, I accepted the offer and stayed at that job for 12 years. It was so awesome. He was my first boss — we just had drinks together this past Tuesday!!

Everyone gathered in off-campus apartments and houses to start the celebration.

Everyone gathered in off-campus apartments and houses to start the celebration.

Hey Day Kiera Lisa

Hey Day Regan 2

Anonymous Classmate #2

First of all it was one of my best days at Penn – being with all my best friends on the Junior Balcony, hugging each other and laughing, while at the same time seeing – in one place – so many of our classmates that I had met during the 3 years before.

I remember after all the festivities started to die down, standing buzzed in the lightly falling rain in the middle of College Green listening to Jerry Brown give a campaign speech for President. I remember thinking, “Boy did his campaign staff really pick the wrong day to come to campus!” Everyone in the audience was a drunk junior – barely standing, cheering and not listening to him. It was a surreal experience for sure!

We made our way from Super Block, over the 38th Street Bridge.

We made our way from Super Block, over the 38th Street Bridge.

And then we headed to the Quad.

And then we headed to the Quad.

Hey Day Quad

Hey Day Lincoln

Hey Day Karen Jamie Deanna

Hey Day 2 friends

Hey Day girls college green

Anonymous Classmate #3

I remember I had a blast that day…smooched a couple people amid the hustle and bustle and had a great excuse to act silly and irresponsible all day. What I remember most though is how I ended the day…meeting class of ’92 friends on Locust Walk. One friend (Name withheld), W’92, took a bite out of my styrofoam hat and then drenched me in beer head to toe. He told me it was part of the Hey Day tradition and to this day I am not sure if his claim was true or just a sneaky opportunity to soak me 🙂

And our class board led us down Locust Walk to College Green. L-R: Ed Miller, Elissa Laitin, Lisa Luther, Julie Berliner, Chrissy Bass, Mike Rosenband, Laurie Bieber, Brooke Hayes.  Not pictured Jennifer Spadano and Doug Rosenberg.

And our class board led us down Locust Walk to College Green.
L-R: Ed Miller, Elissa Laitin, Lisa Luther, Julie Berliner, Chrissy Bass, Mike Rosenband, Laurie Bieber, Brooke Hayes. Not pictured Jennifer Spadano and Doug Rosenberg.

Hey Day Regan

Hey Day Kathleen P Scoops

Hey Day crowd

Hey Day classmates

Congratulations to the Class of 2014 – we hope you have wonderful memories of today to share twenty-one years from now!

The Penn Archives shared the history of Hey Day.

See photos from today’s Hey Day on campus by following @UofPenn on Instragram or @Penn on Twitter. Hashtag is #HeyDay.

1993 Classmates – it’s only a few weeks until our 20th reunion

We can’t wait to see you on campus May 10-11, 2013!



Filed under 20th Reunion, Alumni Perspective, Campus Life, Class of 1993, Historical, Kiera R., Memories of Penn, Photos, Reunions, Traditions


Author: Lisa Marie Patzer

Tomorrow, April 24th, is Final Toast for the Class of 2013!  Final Toast, started by The Penn Traditions program in 2009, is a celebration for the seniors who are becoming Young Penn Alumni.  Follow @yPennAlumni on Twitter and Penn Alumni on Instagram to see live updates. Contribute your own photos with the hashtag #yPennFinalToast.

For inspiration, here are some photos from Final Toast 2012:

Seniors sporting Final Toast T-Shirts

Seniors sporting Final Toast t-shirts

There will be a lot of dancing.

There will be a lot of dancing.

More dancing and celebrating.

More dancing and celebrating.

Final Toast cups

Final Toast cups

Live music by talented students.

Live music by talented students.

Class of 2012 Tree planting.

Class of 2012 tree. Every year a new tree is dedicated at Final Toast.

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Filed under Campus Life, Lisa Marie Patzer, Traditions, Uncategorized, y-Penn, yPenn

A Trip to Belgium

By Sabrina Shyn, C’13

Today until April 30th, a group of Penn alumni, along with Professor Simon Richter, are visiting Belgium and the Netherlands for Penn Alumni Travel’s “River Life along the Waterways of Holland and Belgium” trip.

I spent a semester studying in Belgium last year and I loved it. Here are some photos I took in various cities in Belgium while I was there. I wish I could go back!













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Filed under Sabrina Shyn, Travel

Using Science and Art to Preserve the Past at the Penn Museum

Author: Gabriela Coya, C’14

For over 125 years, the Penn Museum has been transporting people back in time through artifacts from all around the globe. From 5,000-year-old mummies from Egypt, to Mayan hieroglyphics tracing back to 600 BCE, these diverse and often-fragile artifacts need proper care if they are to be around for future visitors.

This couldn’t be done without the help of researchers and conservators, who often stay behind the scenes but will reveal their secrets at Long Live Our Treasures: The Science of Conservation and Preservation, a Philadelphia Science Festival Signature Event taking place next Wednesday, April 26.

Conservators and researchers from the Barnes Foundation, the Mütter Museum, and even our own Penn Museum will tell all about the science and art involved in preserving our most precious artifacts, such as those from In the Artifact Lab. This new exhibit, which opened last fall, allows you to speak directly to conservators about the artifacts they are working on, including a  fragile coffin from 600 CE in need of repair, a complete adult mummy called PUM I, and this little (and even kind of cute) falcon mummy, which you can learn even more about from the conservators themselves on their blog.

Photo credit: Penn Museum

Photo credit: Penn Museum

Among other treasures currently Penn’s campus is the Lod Mosaic, which has been exhibited at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York and is in its final American pit stop before heading to the Louvre in Paris. The mosaic found near Tel Aviv, Israel, in 1996 was impressive upon first glance — despite being nearly 2,000 years old, I didn’t think it looked a day over 100. The colors are vibrant and nearly each tiny cube on this huge 300-square-foot mosaic is still intact. Learn more about its discovery and conservation story in the video below:

If you’re interested in learning more about how the Penn Museum and other Philadelphia museums use science and art to keep the past alive, register for “Long Live Our Treasures” here. Go give artifacts like mummies a little love and attention; because it turns out they need it too.

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Filed under Campus Life, Gabriela C., Penn Museum, Student Perspective, Video

It’s #PennTimeToShine

By Kiera Reilly, C’93  @KieraReilly

Did You Know…that Penn’s Making History campaign celebration, Time to Shine, is tomorrow? Over 14,000 alumni, students, faculty, staff and guests will celebrate on Penn Park with headlining acts Train and John Legend, C’99. The event is free, but registration closes at noon EDT tomorrow, April 19th. Register here. The show will go on, rain or shine. Please note backpacks and umbrellas will not be allowed in Penn Park.

Read the article in The Daily Pennsylvanian today about the event.

During the event, screens around the park will showcase your Instagram photos with the #PennTimetoShine hashtag. Can’t make the event? Share your Penn Pride with us – post your photo of you and your friends or your clubs on Instagram (wearing your Penn gear) with the hashtag #PennTimetoShine and you’ll be featured during the celebration (and of course you can follow along on Instagram and twitter too).

The Regional Clubs team already got into the spirit:

Penn Alumni Regional Clubs director Tara Davies' post.

Penn Alumni Regional Clubs director Tara Davies’ post. L-R: Molly Rand, Marge Tinsley, Laura Foltman, Tara Davies, Kiera Reilly and Casey Ryan (not pictured: Denise Bowden).



Casey Ryan, C'95, post. Follow Casey on Instagram @IrishWombat

Casey Ryan, C’95, post. Follow Casey on Instagram @IrishWombat

Kiera Reilly, C'93, post. Follow Kiera on Instagram @KieraReilly

Kiera Reilly, C’93, post. Follow Kiera on Instagram @KieraReilly

Please like our photos on Instagram!

Penn Alumni (PennAlumni)

University of Pennsylvania (UofPenn)

Penn Alumni Regional Clubs team:

Tara Davies (TaraAnnDavies)

Kiera Reilly, C’93 (KieraReilly)

Casey Ryan, C’95 (IrishWombat)



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Filed under Campaign, Casey R., GAN, Kiera R., Making History, Molly Rand, Penn Clubs, Photos, Social Networking, West Coast Regional Office

Time to Celebrate

Author: Rebecca Eckart, GEd’13

As the school year nears its completion, many of my classmates and I find that we have a lot to celebrate. Prime example: in one of my classes, the due date for our final paper was pushed back a whole week!  I’m sure I can speak for my classmates in sharing my excitement.

Outside of class, we have a lot to celebrate, as well.  The Graduate School of Education (GSE) and the Wharton Doctoral Council hosted a Masquerade Ball for GSE and Wharton students last Saturday.  It was a fun evening to dress up, see friends that I haven’t been able to catch up with recently, and indulge my creative side by decorating a mask.  My full time cohort members and I will graduate in May, so while we enjoyed the evening, we also took a lot of photos with each other, trying not to think too much about the good-byes we’re all going to have to say in a month or two. \

GSE formal: Posing high-school-dance-style with some of my cohort members.

GSE formal: Posing high-school-dance-style with some of my cohort members.

Tomorrow Time to Shine will be held in Penn Park to celebrate the success of the Making History campaign.  The whole campus is full of bright signs and floating stars, and Locust Walk has a festive air to it.  I hope to see many of you there on Friday!

The view on Locust Walk today.

The view on Locust Walk today.

And one more...

And one more…

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Filed under Campaign, Penn Park, Rebecca E., Student Perspective