Expectant dad can take time off

Illustration by Bo Brown


Dear Benny,
My wife is expecting a child soon, and I would like to take time off to be with her and our new arrival. How much paid leave may I take, and how is it allocated? Do I use paid time off first, then sick leave, or do I use sick leave first? Am I eligible for unpaid leave after I’ve used up my paid leave?
—Expectant Dad

Dear Father-to-Be,
I put your question to the Human Resources staff. They tell me that you are eligible for up to 12 weeks of paid and unpaid leave in a 12-month period for events such as this one under the provisions of the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA). In your case, you may take up to three days of sick leave for the care of a sick member of your household—that’s your wife—after which you must use your unused paid time off. Since you are not the one who has a medical condition, you may not use additional sick leave or short-term disability.

Once you’ve used up your paid time off, you may take additional unpaid leave up to the 12-week maximum to be with your wife and child. For details on FMLA, see the FMLA policy at www.hr.upenn.edu/policy/ policies/631.asp on the Web.

Dear Benny,
Who was the first Penn faculty member to win a Nobel Prize? How many Nobel laureates are currently on our faculty?
—Honors Scout

Dear Medalsome,
The first Nobel laureate on the Penn faculty was Research Professor in Physiological Chemistry Otto Meyerhoff, according to the list of Penn laureates on the University Archives Web site. However, he won the Nobel Prize in Medicine in 1922 for work done in England well before he joined the Penn faculty in 1940.

The first Penn faculty member to win a Nobel for his work at Penn was Professor of Physics John Robert Schrieffer, who shared the 1972 Nobel Prize in Physics with John Bardeen of the University of Illinois and Leon Neil Cooper of Brown University for their pioneering theory of superconductivity, known as the "BCS theory."

There are four Nobel laureates on the faculty right now: Professor of Medicine Baruch Blumberg, Professor of Physics Raymond Davis, Professor of Economics Lawrence Klein and Professor of Chemistry Alan MacDiarmid.

Originally published on February 13, 2003