Penn president Gaylord Harnwell Hon53 dies. The Alumni Center,
named for longtime head of development E. Craig Sweeten C37, opens
in the former Delta Tau Delta fraternity house at 3533 Locust Walk.
alleged gang rape at Alpha Tau Omega fraternity leads to widespread
public outcry and protests from all sides about the Universitys
response to the incident. After multiple hearings and litigation,
the fraternity is temporarily suspended.
Penn Gay and Lesbian Alumni Association (PennGALA) is established.
animal-rights activists break into and wreck the Head Injury Clinical
Research Laboratory in protest against experiments there, Penn suspends
primate research at the clinic.
to student protests, the University trustees vote in January to
consider divesting from companies doing business in South Africa
in 18 months without substantial progress on ending apartheid. Penn
garners its fifth consecutive Ivy title in football, and its fifth
undefeated season ever. Commencement moves outdoors to Franklin
Trustees Council of Penn Women is formed. Anniversaries include
the Institute of Contemporary Arts 20th, the Glee Clubs 1ooth,
and Mask & Wigs 125th. The trustees vote in favor of divestment.
Gazette publishes a special report on AIDS. An exhibition of photos
by Robert Mapplethorpe at the ICA sparks protests. Students also
protest a ban on beer kegs by wearing CCCPenn T-shirts. Fran Dunphy
joins Penn as assistant basketball coach, promoted to head coach
the following year.
Sheldon Hackney Hon93 writes an essay responding to attacks on
the National Endowment for the Arts by Senator Jesse Helms and his
allies. The University launches the Campaign for Penn with a goal
of $1 billion.
University celebrates its 250th anniversary with fireworks and a
big birthday bash featuring performances by Dolly Parton and Kenny
Rogers and a speech by former President Ronald Reagan. The Gazette
publishes a commemorative double issue in February-March 199o, including
a capsule history of the University (which omits the magazines
founding in 1902).
Persian Gulf War prompts campus rallies. After protests, Smith Hall
is demolished to provide a site for the Vagelos Institute for Advanced
Science and Technology, completed in 1997.
Bagnoli is named Penns football coach. Dormitories for married
students are opened to gay, lesbian, and unmarried heterosexual
Hackney resigns to become head of the National Endowment for the
Humanities. A pair of race-related eventsthe water buffalo incident
and the destruction of 14,ooo copies of The Daily Pennsylvanian
deemed offensive by a group originally signing itself the Black
Communityputs the University at the center of the raging public
debate over free speech vs. political correctness.
provost and Penn alumna Dr. Judith Rodin CW66 becomes the Universitysand
the Ivy Leaguesfirst woman president. The Penn Relays cross the
century mark. The Campaign for Penn concludes with $1.3 billion.
25 years, Anthony A. Lyle C61 retires as Gazette editor. The University
launches a five-year strategic plan, titled The Agenda for Excellence.
Halls Centennial and the 50th anniversary of ENIAC are celebrated.
John Prendergast C80 is named editor of the Gazette. A campus crime
wave including robberies, shootings, and a murderprompts new security
measures and spurs efforts to improve neighborhood relations. Kelly
Writers House opens at 3805 Locust Walk.
cracks the top 10 in the US News & World Report rankings, tying
with Dartmouth in seventh place. Alumnus Dr. Stanley Prusiner C64
M68 wins the Nobel Prize in Medicine.
announces partnership with the school district and teachers union
to create a pre-K-8 public school in West Philadelphia. The new
University Bookstore opens in Sansom Common at 36th & Walnut,
with the Inn at Penn hotel and retail and restaurants to follow.
The 25th anniversary of Penns womens studies program is celebrated.
New undergraduate residential system of 12 college houses is inaugurated.
death of Jesse Gelsinger, an 18-year old participant in an experimental
gene-therapy trial, leads to the suspension of clinical trials at
Penns Institute for Human Gene Therapy and an FDA investigation
of IHGT head Dr. James Wilson. Alumnus Dr. Ahmed Zewail Gr74 Hon97
wins the Nobel Prize in Chemistry.
worries about Y2K computer failures and other disasters prove unfounded.
Chemistry Professor Alan MacDiarmid wins the Nobel Prize. Perelman
Quadrangle, the renovation and construction project linking Houston,
Logan, and Williams Halls and Irvine Auditorium around the new Wynn
Commons, is opened.
attacks on the World Trade Center and Pentagon kill thousands, including
16 Penn alumni. The 125th Celebration of Women at Penn brings 1,2oo
alumnae to campus for two days of events marking the century-and-a-quarter
since the first women were admitted to a degree-granting program
at the University.
is fifth in the US News & World Report rankings. Milestones
(other than the Gazettes Centennial) include the 5oth anniversary
of the veterinary schools New Bolton Center, the 90th of the Association
of Alumnae, and the 10th of the Center for Community Partnerships.
Penn announces a new strategic plan, Building
on Excellence, to solidify and extend the gains of recent years.