Faculty Masters for
Hi-Rise College Houses
Faculty Masters have been chosen for the three college houses located
in the hi-rise dormitories, to take office in the coming academic year
as part of the redesigned and expanded residential college system at Penn.
The houses and their masters are:
- Harnwell: Dr. David Brownlee of art history;
- Harrison: Dr. John Richetti of English; and
- Hamilton: Dr. Neil Shubin of of biology.
"I am absolutely delighted to announce these appointments,"
said Interim Provost Michael L. Wachter. "The quality of Penn's faculty
in residence has always been excellent and these three new appointments
build upon that tradition. To have this calibre of faculty join us in the
inaugural year of our comprehensive College House system is especially
Faculty Masters are appointed by the Provost to three-year terms, renewable
for a similar term or terms thereafter.
The appointments follow a comprehensive search process which included
members of the Residential Faculty Council, the undergraduate Residential
Advisory Board, Graduate Fellows, representatives from the four undergraduate
schools and staff from Academic Programs and Residence Life, Dr. Wachter
Each resident Faculty Master is a member of a multi-generational community
in which students and faculty meet regularly over meals and at numerous
social and cultural events sponsored by the House, he explained. The masters
bring other faculty into contact with the life of the House and build bridges
between the House's programs and other relevant activities on the campus.
"Each also brings to the life of the House some of his or her own
special interests," he added, "while working to support the greatest
possible variety of other programming developed by the House community-especially
its council of undergraduate members and the Residential Programs located
in the Houses." Working closely with the House Dean, the Faculty Master
ensures that the House provides "excellent counseling and academic
support," he said, including the locally-delivered services of "The
New Faculty Masters
Harnwell's Dr. David Brownlee is a historian of modern architecture
who headed the planning and implementation committees responsible for creating
the new system of 21st Century College Houses at Penn, and is now director
of College House implementation for the Provost's Office. He will be joined
in Harnwell House by his wife, Dr. Ann Blair Brownlee, an archaeologist
and historian of Greek art and Senior Research Scientist in the Mediterranean
Section of the University of Pennsylvania Museum.
Philadelphia-born David Brownlee was educated at Harvard, where he received
his A.B. summa cum laude in 1973. After taking his M.A. and Ph.D.
there, he joined Penn's History of Art Department in 1980 as an assistant
professor. He has been full professor since 1993 and has chaired both the
undergraduate and graduate programs in art history at SAS.
He is the only scholar to win all three major prizes of the American
Society of Architectural Historians and the only American ever to win the
book prize of the counterpart British society. Among his books are Building
the City Beautiful: the Benjamin Franklin Parkway and the Philadelphia
Museum of Art (1989), Louis I. Kahn: In the Realm of Architecture
(with David De Long) (1991) and Making a Modern Classic: the Architecture
of the Philadelphia Museum of Art (1997). He will be a guest co-curator
of the planned Robert Venturi retrospective exhibition in 2001.
Harrison's Dr. John Richetti, the Leonard Sugarman Term Professor
of Eighteenth-Century English Literature, has been a Faculty Fellow for
the past two years in Van Pelt College House, along with his wife, Dr.
Deirdre David, professor of English and former chair of the department
He is a 1960 alumnus of St. Francis College in Brooklyn who received
his M.A. and Ph.D. from Columbia University (1968) and taught at Columbia
and Rutgers before joining Penn in 1987. He has held the Sugarman chair
since 1987, and chaired the English department here in 1990-1995.
He is the author of Popular Fiction Before Richardson: Narrative
Patterns 1700-1739 (1969), Philosophical Writing: Locke, Berkeley,
Hume (1983) and Daniel Defoe (1987), and is currently working
on The Novel in History: Fiction and Social Change, 1660-1780.
A winner of the Lindback Award for Distinguished Teaching, he has also
won the Danforth Teacher Fellowship and held Woodrow Wilson, Fulbright,
Guggenheim and NEH Senior Research fellowships.
Hamilton's Dr. Neil Shubin, associate professor of biology,
will be joined in Harnwell House by his wife, Dr. Michele Seidl, a geologist
who was assistant professor at Rutgers in New Brunswick until her recent
move to the Pew Charitable Trusts as program associate in the Higher Education
Dr. Shubin is a 1982 Columbia alumnus who took his A.M. and Ph.D. (1987)
from Harvard, where he won the Harvard-Danforth Award for Excellence in
Teaching and the Biology Undergraduate Teaching Fellowship. Other honors
include the Young Faculty Award of the Natural Sciences Association and
selection for the University of Chicago's Sewell Wright Lectureship.
Joining Penn in 1989, Dr. Shubin became associate professor in 1995
and is currently chair of the College Committee on Study Abroad and the
Faculty Senate Committee on Students and Educational Responsibility. He
is a freshman advisor in SAS and member of the biology department's graduate
admissions committee. His research, supported by NSF, the National Geographic
Society, and Penn Research Foundation, is published widely in such journals
as Science, Nature and the Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology,
and he contributed also to Interpreting the Hierarchy of Nature and
Homology: The Hierarchical Basis of Comparative Biology.