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All across America academicians and athletes alike are accustomed to an array of acronyms--BA, BS, JD, MBA, MD, MSW, Ph.D., RN, AAUP, ACE, NCAA, NBA, NLF, NHL USTA--and at Penn an abundance of acronyms abounds and confounds. For instance there is PennSTAR, ISTAR and STAAR.

Below is an admittedly partial list of some of the many Penn acronyms, some have been around for decades and others are relatively new to the University.

A Primer of the Plethora of Penn Acronyms--From A to Z

AARC logo AARC: African American Resource Center, provides services, counseling, mediation, advocacy and debriefings to any member of the Penn community, with a particular focus on those of African descent.

ACASA: Ackoff Center for Advancement of Systems Approaches, a think-tank created in 2000 by SEAS.

ACELA: La Asociacion Cultural de Estudiantes Latino Americanos, a student run organization, established in 1947, based in La Casa Latina.

ARCH: Arts, Research and Culture House, located at 3601 Locust Walk, formerly known as the Christian Association before Penn purchased the building in 1999; the name was selected by a contest which attracted 250 entries.

AWFA: Association of Women Faculty & Administrators, founded in the early 1960s to provide opportunities for women faculty and administrators to meet for intellectual exchange, information sharing and mutual support.

BEN: Business Enterprise Network, the suite of web-based applications that support University-wide financial functions.

CAPS: Counseling and Psychological Services, provides professional services including individual, group and couples counseling/psychotherapy to students who are having personal, social, academic and career issues.

CASI: Center for the Advanced Study of India, the only research institute in the U.S. focused on contemporary India.

CCPPR: Center for Children's Policy, Practice and Research, brings together scholars and professionals in law, medicine, and social work to protect children's rights.

CGS: College of General Studies, the continuing studies and lifelong learning division of SAS.

CHANGES: Center for Health Achievement Neighborhood Growth & Ethnic Studies, established at GSE in 1994.

CCPPR logo

CHOP: Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, the first hospital in the US dedicated solely to the care of children, home to Penn's pediatric department.

CTT: Center for Technology Transfer, obtains and manages patents, copyrights and trademarks derived from academic research.

CWiC: Communication Within the Curriculum, a program that supports student speaking as a means of both communicating and learning.
CWic logo

DMD: Digital Media Design, a multifaceted/multidisciplinary undergraduate program, based in SEAS, but with curriculum also from School of Design and Annenberg School.

DP: The Daily Pennsylvanian, the independent student newspaper, founded in 1885.

DRIA: Division of Recreation and Intercollegiate Athletics.

ENIAC: Electronic Numerical Integrator and Computer, gave birth to the Information Age in 1946, is worth a walk to the Moore Building for a glimpse of the computer that is over 50 years old and still a tourist attraction.

FLASH: Facilitating Learning About Sexual Health, a student organization.

GAASAM: Graduate Association for Asian American Students & Studies.

GAPSA: Graduate and Professional Student Assembly, the University-wide student government for graduate and professional students.

FLASH logo

GET-UP: Graduate Employees Together-University of Pennsylvania, a group in support of graduate employee unionization.
GET-UP logo

GIC: Greenfield Intercultural Center, an intercultural resource center established in 1984 to address the needs of Penn's increasingly diverse community.
GIC logo

GRASP Lab: General Robotics, Automation, Sensing and Perception lab, a multi-disciplinary research lab, founded in 1979 and housed in SEAS.

GSAC: Graduate Student Associations Council, represents students pursuing Ph.D. degrees and other graduate students in SAS. GSAC logo

GSE: Graduate School of Education.

GSFA: Graduate School of Fine Arts, now known as School of Design.

HR: Human Resources, the division dedicated to the recruitment, employment, development and retention of faculty and staff.

HUP: Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania.

IAA: International Affairs Association, organizes two annual conferences: ILMUNC, (Ivy League Model United Nations Conference) the premier model UN for high school students, hosted by Penn, celebrating its 20th anniversary January 29-February 1, 2004; and UPMUNC (University of Pennsylvania Model United Nations Conference) for college students, founded in 1967. ILUMNC

IAST: Institute for Advanced Science and Technology.

ICA: Institute of Contemporary Art, founded in 1963 at Penn, in its own building designed by Adele Naude Santos since 1990.

ILI: International Literacy Institute, established in 1994 by UNESCO and Penn's GSE.

IME: Institute for Medicine and Engineering, established in 1996, with a focus on interdisciplinary research and education to advance the treatment of disease.
IME logo

IRCS: Institute for Research in Cognitive Science, founded in 1990, fosters collaboration among departments in linguistics, mathematical logic, philosophy, psychology, computer science and neuroscience.

ISC: Information Systems and Computing, Penn's central computing organization, which provides leadership, infrastructure, standards and services.

ISTAR: Institute for Strategic Threat Analysis and Response, created as a reaction to 9/11, to examine acute threats.
ISTAR logo

LDI: Leonard Davis Institute of Health Economics, a cooperative venture among Penn's schools of dentistry, medicine, nursing and Wharton; a center for health services research, health policy analysis and health care management executive education.

LGBT Center: Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transgender Center, established in 1982, one of the oldest such centers in the country.

LIFE: Living Independently For Elders, a program of all-inclusive care to foster independence and health, a healthcare service of the School of Nursing.

LRSM: Laboratory for Research on the Structure of Matter, the center for materials research created to foster collaborative, interdisciplinary research.

LGBT Center logo

LUCY: Loop through University City, SEPTA circulator bus, started in summer of 1999 in conjunction with UCD to provide free transit service to/from 30th Street Station for those affiliated with the local institutions.

MAP: Major Advising Program, a new resource for students in the College to sample other majors.

MASCA: Museum Applied Science Center for Archaeology, part of the University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology.

MMETS: Multi-Media and Educational Technology Services, an instructional technology group that is part of SAS Computing and provides audio/visual support for academic and campus events.

NBC: New Bolton Center, a 680-acre campus located in Kennett Square, in Chester County--home of the School of Veterinary Medicine's George D. Widener Hospital for Large Animals, a working dairy, swine facility, chicken coops, research labs and a farm.

NCAL: National Center on Adult Literacy, established at GSE in 1990 with a major grant from the US Department of Education.

NCOFF: National Center on Fathers and Families, an interdisciplinary policy research center established in 1994 at GSE to improve the well-being of children.

NCOFF logo

NSO: New Student Orientation, held at the beginning of the fall semester.

OCP: Orthodox Community at Penn, provides information for the Orthodox Jewish community.

OCP: Orthodox Community at Penn, provides information for the Orthodox Jewish community.

OPIM: Operations & Information Management, a department in the Wharton School.

PACE: Programs for Awareness in Cultural Education, established in 1993 to facilitate dialogues across dimensions, at the Greenfield Intercultural Center.

PACE logo

PCC: Penn Children's Center, provides child care for children ages three months to five years, administered by Business Services, accredited by NAEYC.

PCC logo

PENNCAP: Pennsylvania College Achievement Program, works closely with academically talented students, many from low-income or educationally disadvantaged backgrounds.

PennSTAR: Penn Specialized Tertiary Aeromedical Response, the Penn Med helicopters that go to accident scenes to rescue trauma victims and transport them to trauma centers, such as HUP, for specialized care; the service began in June 1988.

PFP: Pre-Freshman Program, a four-week academic experience prior to matriculation, primarily for PENNCAP participants.

PFSNI: Penn Faculty and Staff for Neighborhood Issues, an organization established in 1993, drawn from Penn people who reside in the neighborhoods near campus.

PFSNI logo

PPSA: Penn Professional Staff Assembly, a network to serve administrative/technical staff.

PPSA logo

PVN: Penn Video Network, closed-circuit cable television and special video event network.

PVN logo

PWC: Penn Women's Center, founded in 1973.

SAC: Student Activities Council, recognizes, supervises and funds undergraduate activities, funded through the UA.

SAS: School of Arts and Sciences.

SCUE: Student Committee on Undergraduate Education, the oldest existing branch of student government, founded in 1965, works to enhance and expand curricular opportunities and quality of academic experience.

SEAS: School of Engineering and Applied Science.

SEC: Senate Executive Committee, the elected leadership of the Faculty Senate, representing faculty interests to the administration.

SEI: Scheie Eye Institute, serves as the department of ophthalmology of UPHS.

SFCU: Student Federal Credit Union, a non-profit organization founded in 1987 by three Wharton MBA students; the largest student-run credit union in the nation.

SFCU logo

SNAP: Student Nurses at Penn, promotes participation in community service activities in the area of health care and serves as the Penn chapter of the Student Nurses Association of Pennsylvania (SNAP).

SPEC: Social Planning and Events Committee, part of Connaissance.

STAAR: Students Together Against Acquaintance Rape, a peer health program founded in the late 1980s, part of Office of Health Education.

STAB: Student Theatre Arts Board, the student-elected representatives that serves as a link between the theatre arts students and the faculty.

STAAR logo

UA: Undergraduate Assembly, responsible for advocacy of undergraduate issues to the administration, consists of elected student officers.

UC: University Council, the University-wide advisory body, wtih representatives from all of the major constituencies.

UCD: University City District, established by a partnership of University City institutions, businesses and community organizations in August 1997, has worked to make the area cleaner and safer and has also revitalized neighborhoods and been a partner in city-wide events.

UMC: United Minorities Council, an interracial student alliance which sponsors cultural and educational programs to promote cross-cultural awareness.

UCD logo

UPHS: University of Pennsylvania Health System.

UPM: University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology.

UPPD: University of Pennsylvania Police Department, part of the Division of Public Safety.

UPS: Undergraduate Psychology Society, an organization of Penn students interested in exploring the field, sponsors events and publishes a journal, Perspectives in Psychology.

UTV-13: University Television, the student-run station.

VPUL: Vice Provost for University Life, a division that nurtures the interests and aspirations of Penn students through activities, resource and service centers.

VPUL logo

VSA: Vietnamese Students Association, to promote an appreciation for Vietnamese culture.

WGA: Wharton Graduate Association, the primary vehicle for coordinating and managing student activities and initiatives, both academic and extracurricular.

WGA logo

WPSA: Weekly-paid Professional Staff Assembly, formerly the A-3 Assembly, representing non-exempt and non-union employees.

ZBT: Zeta Beta Tau, fraternity founded in 1898 at Columbia, Penn's chapter was founded in 1907 and is the fourth oldest active chapter.



  Almanac, Vol. 50, No. 8, October14, 2003