International House

International House students

Photo credit: University Archives

In 1908, Edward Cope Wood, director of the University of Pennsylvania’s Christian Association, extended a hand of friendship to foreign students from China—and invited those students to share his home. This inspired others to open their homes as well, and led to the establishment of International House. In the years since, numerous scholars from around the world have made I-House their home, including the students pictured at right (left to right): Edward A. Lee from the British West Indies; Bernard G. Cox from New Zealand; Nicolo M. Nicolov from Bulgaria; Narendra Nath Berry from India; and Casimiro M. Valdez from the Philippine Islands.

Today, I-House provides living quarters for nearly 400 students from 65 countries, as well as cultural programs for residents and the general public, including acclaimed film series, musical performances and art exhibits.

For more information on I-House, go to

Originally published on December 6, 2007