University of Pennsylvania Fast Facts:
Located in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (Just across the Schuylkill River from popular sites such as Independence National Historical Park, Reading Terminal Market, and the Museum of Art)
Acceptance Rate of 9.4%
#8 in National Universities According to US News and World Report
Entering the campus of UPenn from the city of Philadelphia almost feels like setting foot in a different world; although both the university and the city combine their historical roots with modern aspects, UPenn feels like a sanctuary in a bustling city. Crossing over the Schuylkill River into the university is a true change of pace, with the crowded streets of the city giving way to quieter avenues.
Despite this, the University of Pennsylvania is anything but sleepy. Founded in 1740 by Benjamin Franklin, the school has always been committed to academic excellence and training leaders, which is clearly evident with alumni including Donald Trump, Elon Musk, John Legend, and Warren Buffett. The Ivy League institution is today one of the country’s top universities, ranking eighth nationally and first in all business programs (Wharton School of Business). The school is also a leader in the research field, with over 141 research centers and many opportunities for undergraduates to research alongside their professors.
The urban location provides a wealth of opportunities for both academic and recreational experiences. The university has several options for hands-on work in the Philadelphia community, including academic partnerships with local community centers, non-profits, and elementary schools. Recreationally, Philadelphia has plenty of leisure activities, not only as a thriving 21st century city, but an important American historical hub. The city is America’s first World Heritage City, with sites such as the Betsy Ross House, the Museum of the American Revolution, Independence Hall, the first U.S. Mint, and the Liberty Bell showcasing the history of America’s revolutionary days. For sports fans, the city is home NHL, NBA, MLB, and NFL teams, all of which play in the same complex on the outskirts of the city.
For those looking for spirited campus life, UPenn doesn’t lack. The school has over 450 student-run groups, including political advocacy clubs, Greek life, cultural performing troupes, peer-reviewed publications, and religious associations. For athletics, 25 Division I teams compete in the Ivy League conference, and the lacrosse and basketball teams find national success year after year. Each spring, the university plays host to the Penn Relays at Franklin Field, one of the most prestigious international, collegiate, and high school track competitions in the United States.
Penn’s campus itself is breathtaking. Gothic architecture lines the streets, and quads filled with artwork. Despite the old-fashioned exterior of the buildings, inside, many are modernized and sleek, such as the Office of Undergraduate Admissions. Additionally, Houston Hall, the first student union in the United States, is a must-see aspect of campus; one can feel the school’s history radiating from the building, which houses several alumni portraits and a cafe. The campus also lies along the Schuylkill River, providing a view of the rest of Philadelphia across the water.
No matter looking for academic strength, fun student life, or a beautiful campus, UPenn has it all. For more information on the university, go to upenn.edu.