Category Archives: Campaign

Penn Around the World

Author: Patrick Bredehoft

It’s amazing to think that just a week ago, Penn took the Time to Shine tour on the road, hosting its first off-campus event at the Ritz-Carleton in Hong Kong on Tuesday, May 21. The evening was a great success: in addition to hosting alumni from the past six decades, we welcomed Class of 2013 graduates, current students, recently admitted members of Penn’s Class of 2017, deans, faculty members, parents, friends, and Penn staff, all to celebrate the tremendous achievements of this campaign, and of the university.

In all, more than 250 people attended, including a large gathering for President Gutmann’s Time to Shine presentation, followed by a reception for Penn community members representing several generations and a host of countries across Asia and around the world.

I spoke with committed representatives from Penn’s regional clubs and with members of the Alumni Interview Program, with alumni who hadn’t been back to campus in years and with students who had flown directly to Hong Kong from Philadelphia, with global industrial leaders and with NGO interns.  But for everyone present, the groundswell of Penn pride was overwhelming: to a person, each guest was glad of their affiliation to the University of Pennsylvania.  From the April 19th campus events at the beginning of the campaign’s conclusion to the countless beaming smiles halfway around the world, there is a powerful sense of how much Penn has accomplished, as well as a palpable eagerness for what lies ahead.  The campaign conclusion events will continue, and if you have the chance, I’d strongly encourage you to attend one in your area; it’s a thrilling time to belong to Penn.

Below are just a few pictures, but you can view the whole photo album here.





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Filed under Alumni Programming, Campaign, Patrick B., Penn Clubs

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

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

What’s Going on in Penn Park?

Author: Stephanie Yee, C’08

The weather was perfect on Sunday – sunny with a slight breeze. I took advantage of the beautiful weather by taking a walk from West Philly to Center City. When I walked by Penn Park, I noticed some construction in the parking lot. I wonder if the construction has to do with the upcoming Time to Shine (#TimetoShine) celebration this Friday, April 19th. I am looking forward to seeing Penn Park during the big celebration!

2013-04-14 11 40 14

What’s going on here? Construction in the Penn Park parking lot.

2013-04-14 11 39 16

The bubble has been taken down thanks to the nice weather in Philly.

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Filed under Alumni Perspective, Campaign, Campus Life, Stephanie Y.

Tales of a New Staff Member

Author: Joshua Durando

All of us who work at Penn recognize that the university fosters a culture of excellence driven both by talented faculty and staff dedicated to making Penn even better than it was the day before. To be working here is an honor, and as a fairly new staff member, I confess that I suffered from the typical anxiety all new jobs cause.  Specifically, I pondered questions like: How will I fit in? Will people like me? Will I like them? Will I be good at my job? Before my first day at work, I did what any other consumer-minded American would do: I bought a “first day of work” outfit. I also spent some time thinking about good questions I could ask on my first day. Finally, and perhaps most importantly, I realized that I needed to find a name for the Betta fish I bought as a desktop accoutrement.

Well, suffice it to say, my new outfit was a hit, all of my questions were answered, and the fish has been named. He is called Pippen Speedwell Eventchild, and my picture of him is my most “liked” picture on Instagram. But don’t take my word for it. See for yourself. He is amazing.


I did not tell him that he’s popular on Instagram. If he knew I had his picture on something as mainstream as Instagram, he’d be so mad. He’s a total hipster – or, I should say, a “pipster.”

As you can tell by my fish-buying level of preparedness, I hit the ground running when I arrived at Penn. After all, I had some catching up to do – history had been made here. I quickly learned about the many great things Penn has accomplished over the last five years, and even more thrilling, what it plans to achieve moving into the future. “You’ve come at such an exciting time!” was the general motif of my first few weeks. No one passed on the opportunity to congratulate me not only on my new position, but also on becoming part of such an amazing institution on the heels of unprecedented success.

Their congratulatory messages were almost always followed by a “So, do you know what you are working on yet?” As luck would have it, I was fortunate enough to be assigned to assist with the “April 19th event,” a happening which instantly garnered reactions that ranged from “I’m so excited for that event! It sounds great!” to “Oh wow, you must be really busy already.” Both were true. The “April 19th event” is actually called “Making History at Penn Park” and it truly is shaping up to be an exciting day. In addition to a variety of events occurring throughout the day, MHPP (as it’s become affectionately known) is an evening event full of great entertainment, food and drink. In addition, it’s open to all of the Penn family.

The event begins at 5:00 p.m. and is campus-wide party with food, fun, and musical performances by 17 student performance groups, with headline acts Grammy Award-winning Train and Grammy Award-winning and Penn alumnus, John Legend.

To register and to learn more, go here. (registration is required for all guests). The event, in addition to being totally awesome, will also be interactive – this is where you come in! Whether you are at the event or not, you can still participate via Instagram. For the entirety of the evening we will be pulling pictures from Instagram that are tagged with the hashtag #penntimetoshine. Whether you snap a picture of you and family or friends in the audience having a great time, or send us a picture from wherever you are with a sign that reads “Wish I was there!” we’d love to hear from you.


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My Top Penn List: Engagement and the Campaign

Author: Casey Ryan, C’95

We raised $4,302,890,707 in our Making History Campaign. Wow, that’s a lot of money.  If you haven’t yet visited the final report website, you should in order to see how much of an impact the legacy of this campaign will have on the University.

The “Number”

The “Number”

Yet our campaign was crafted to be different; we emphasized engagement goals for ourselves that focused on increasing every alumnus’s access and interaction with the University whether it was on campus and out in the world.  We took these objectives seriously and created or retooled over 25 programs during the life of the campaign that increased alumni engagement.

I wanted to highlight 10 of my favorite engagement programs that have come about due to the campaign.

10. Trustees’ Council of Penn Women (TCPW) Summer Networking Receptions: Over the summer, TCPW, whose charge is to support, foster and promote the advancement of women’s issues within the University, hosts Summer Networking Receptions for Penn alumnae and current Penn students to make social and business contentions. Bringing Penn alumnae together and spotlighting a female executive from the region as the keynote speaker for the reception, TCPW provided exclusive opportunities for networking.

TCPW Summer Networking Reception – Chicago (2012).

TCPW Summer Networking Reception – Chicago (2012).

9. Social Media: Social Media has been around since 1994 started by now defunct brands like TheGlobe, GeoCities and SixDegrees. Sites like My Space and Friendster, which started in 2002-2003, were the watershed portals of the Social Media trends that made way for Facebook in 2004 and Twitter in 2006. Facebook and Twitter burst onto the scene and soon became the ubiquitous means of staying in touch with over 500 million Twitter users and over one billion Facebook users. It was obvious that having a presence online would be valuable. While an ever-changing social landscape, this nexus of online communities and outlets will evolve and Penn will plan to stay in the forefront of new media.

Since the start of the campaign, seven years ago, Penn has since joined Twitter (with 4,244 followers) and Facebook (with 51,276 likes) in 2009. Also, that year, Penn started to manage its presence on LinkedIn with 26,728 members. As of summer and fall 2012, Penn has joined the ranks of Instagram and Pinterest.

8. Quaker Yellow Pages: The Quaker Yellow Pages were launched to help our alumni support businesses of Penn alumni. Alumni can find the products and services advertised by fellow alumni. Individuals are encouraged to post a listing to promote your own product or service for free. Simply select one of the choices below. Penn Dental was inspired to create their own Quaker resource, the Find a Penn Dentist tool, which will give you the names of Penn Dental alumni who practice in your area.

7. Penn To You: Penn To You: More than a School Night embraces Penn’s unofficial motto: Never stop learning. In the classroom, in the community, and in the wider world, Penn people bring an intense intellectual curiosity to everything they do. Penn to You is designed to bring Penn alumni, parents, and friends together for an evening of intellectual and social engagement. Each event will feature one of Penn’s 12 schools and will include conversation, presentations and panel discussions with select faculty—many of whom were recruited through the Making History Campaign.

: Penn To You – Chicago featuring Ezekiel Emanuel and Barbara E. Kahn (2012).

Penn To You – Chicago featuring Ezekiel Emanuel and Barbara E. Kahn (2012).

6. Penn Spectrum: In 2010, University held its first-ever weekend-long alumni conference devoted entirely to celebrating diversity, Penn Spectrum. After three years of taking the event on the road, Penn Spectrum returns to campus, capping the momentum of our diverse alumni. All alumni are welcome. More information will be available on the Penn Spectrum page.

Penn Spectrum on the Road – Washington, DC (2011).

Penn Spectrum on the Road – Washington, DC (2011).

5. Frankly Penn: Frankly Penn, the Penn Alumni Blog, was established in March 2011 to represent life at the University of Pennsylvania. The team of bloggers consists of alumni, students, staff and faculty from around Penn –both on campus and beyond. This mixture of voices illustrates the dynamic and robust spirit of the University to all who read it. Led by the communications team at Penn Alumni, the blog has had 89,992 views and 564 posts, plus the blog has been continuously updated, Monday through Friday, since its launch.

4. Family Programs: Penn Alumni Families provides Penn Alumni family-specific events for our Philadelphia area alumni with children ages 12 years and under. This new series provides an opportunity for alumni to enjoy Penn events with an emphasis on programming for their children. With the success of Family Day at Mask & Wig and 40 Winks with the Sphinx, look for more events in Philadelphia and in the regions.

40 Winks with the Sphinx (2011).

40 Winks with the Sphinx (2011).

3. Penn Quotient: The Penn Quotient was developed at our Winter Board Retreat as an easy way to determine how you can best show your loyalty and support for your alma mater. It’s a simple checklist to identify those things you are already doing and to explore those you have yet to try.

Complete the checklist once a year to achieve a perfect score:

  • Attend Alumni Weekend in May
  • Explore arts and culture at Homecoming
  • Join or attend events with your local club
  • Visit QuakerNet and update your profile
  • Promote Penn to prospective students
  • Participate in an Alumni Education program
  • Donate to one of Penn’s many annual funds
  • Read The Pennsylvania Gazette
    The real reason for reunions, Alumni Weekend (2011).

    The real reason for reunions, Alumni Weekend (2011).

    2. Penn Alumni Office Hours: As a student at Penn, you could take part in the opportunity to ask in-depth questions and to explore points of interest with your professor outside of class during his or her office hours. Penn Alumni Office Hours provide this same opportunity to alumni by hosting a virtual Office Hours webinar presentation featuring one of Penn’s dynamic faculty members, who will focus on a topic or issue of their choice.

    From the ease of your computer, you can attend these free webinars and submit questions and comments both in advance of and during the program.  If you are unable to visit the Office Hours live, all Office Hour webinars will be recorded and made available through the Penn Alumni Relations site.

    1. Penn Alumni Interview Program: The Penn Alumni Interview Program involves the largest number of Penn Alumni who volunteer for a single project. During Making History, we were able to transition seamlessly the program from the Admissions to Alumni Relations. Capitalizing on the synergies that exist in the Alumni Relations office as well as the leadership of our dedicated staff, the Interview Program was able to steward our Interview Program chairs and interviewers to conduct 21,750 interviews which represents 68% of the total candidates that applied to Penn.

    Penn alumni interviewers help high school students learn more about Penn, and they help the Admissions Office learn more about applicants to the university.  As the Interview Program has the goal of being able to offer an interview to every student who applies as a prospective undergraduate, the Interview Program team will be traveling out to our alumni to help provide training and the information our alumni interviewers will need to help Penn see its goal come true.

    Look at all this Penn Pride. (Homecoming, 2011).

    Look at all this Penn Pride. (Homecoming, 2011).

    Author’s note: I am currently out of the office on a business trip. At the time I submitted this entry, all statistics sited in this blog were accurate.


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Filed under Alumni Weekend, Campaign, Casey R., Homecoming Weekend featuring arts and culture, Interview Program, Making History, Top Ten, Uncategorized

326,952 Thank You Notes

Author: Dan Bernick, C’14

Penn made history. Five years and $4,302,890,707 later, Penn has accomplished and surpassed the Making History Campaign goals. Faculty, staff, administrators, alumni, and Penn family and friends are rightly overjoyed by our collective accomplishment.

But what does the Campaign mean for students?

In a word, everything.


$366.3 million was raised for undergraduate financial aid. That means more of my friends can take advantage of a Penn education for years to come. It means Penn will continue attracting the best and brightest students in the world, no matter their background.

$752.7 million was raised for buildings and facilities. This money goes to create new collaborative spaces for students, like the Education Commons; it goes towards improving dining and living facilities, so students can make Penn their home; and it goes towards building the world class facilities where students are learning and building and curing and discovering the future.

In total 326, 952 donors gave to Penn. That means my friends and I are graduating into a great big Penn family – thousands of individuals we can turn to for advice, support, friendship, (and a job!).

Ben Franklin would be proud.

Penn President Amy Gutmann wrote, “At Penn, we know that history does not just happen; it is made.” Well, we made it. Now, It’s Time to Shine.

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Filed under Campaign, Daniel B., Student Perspective, The Penn Fund