Penn Current | Top Stories en-us Penn Current: News, Ideas, and Conversations from the University of Pennsylvania 140 46 PHOS expands boundaries for forgivable loan program Penn Home Ownership Services (PHOS) has extended the boundary of its Forgivable Loan Program to include a wider section of West Jeanne Leong 2014-09-18T00:00:00 Penn criminologist demonstrates wearable gunshot detection Community-based offenders, such as those on house arrest or out on bail or parole, account for a disproportionately large share of the perpetrators of fatal and non-fatal shootings. Detecting and deterring shootings among this population can be challenging in the absence of reliable evidence that a particular community-supervised offender illegally used a firearm. Jacquie Posey 2014-09-18T00:00:00 Q&A with Wendy White From her light-filled office atop 113 S. 36th St., Wendy White jokes about the stresses of being a lawyer. It’s different day-to-day and week-to-week, she says, and a particularly difficult issue she’s working on in the morning often turns into a completely different obstacle by lunchtime. Maria Zankey 2014-09-11T00:00:00 Saving Syrian history in the middle of a civil war Syria’s Great Mosque of Aleppo, or Umayyad Mosque, was built in the eighth century in the Ancient City of Aleppo, one of the oldest continuously inhabited cities in the world. Sacked by fire, conquerors, and earthquakes, the Great Mosque was rebuilt several times, and is believed by some Muslims to contain the remains of the Prophet Zakariya, father of the Prophet Yahya, whom Christians call John the Baptist. Greg Johnson 2014-09-11T00:00:00 Student Spotlight with Sarah Lindstedt Greg Johnson 2014-09-11T00:00:00 Steig, Tehon, and the magic of making children’s books A dash of Picasso, a dose of William Blake, a formative boyhood in the Bronx, and a never-ending imagination stirred with artistic vigor formed William Steig, one of the 20th century’s most acclaimed cartoonists and children’s book authors. Greg Johnson 2014-09-11T00:00:00 Staff Q&A with Nancy Peter It’s easy for Nancy Peter to love her job, she says, because she created it herself. Maria Zankey 2014-09-11T00:00:00 Construction projects keep campus buzzing over the summer Even in the relative quiet of June, July, and early August, some parts of Penn’s campus were humming with activity. Construction crews remained hard at work during the summer months, tackling both long- and short-term facilities projects. Heather A. Davis 2014-08-28T00:00:00 Food truck vendors redefine fine dining at Penn From hot dogs to haute cuisine, the food trucks and carts on and around Penn’s campus offer menus to please even the most discerning palates. Food Network programs have showcased several of the University’s street food purveyors, including Magic Carpet food cart owner Dean Varvoutis. He’s been at the vanguard of the street food movement since 1984 when he wheeled his first cart to the corner of 36th and Spruce. Jacquie Posey 2014-08-07T00:00:00 People of Penn 2014-07-17T00:00:00 Exercise improves chemotherapy treatment, Penn study finds Chemotherapy, while potentially lifesaving, is notoriously draining on the human body. It can make patients feel fatigued, nauseated, and downright lousy. But a new study by researchers in the School of Nursing and the Perelman School of Medicine suggests that patients who push past the malaise and do some low-impact exercises during their chemo regimen might help their cancer drugs work better. Katherine Unger Baillie 2014-09-18T00:00:00 AppItUp Challenge returns for second year Last fall, the Penn Center for Innovation (PCI) launched the AppItUP Challenge, a contest that collected mobile app ideas from across the University and helped bring the best ones to life. The 2013 challenge yielded 185 ideas from 11 of Penn’s 12 schools. Of that pool, venture capital and development partners selected the top five ideas for free prototype development. Madeleine Stone 2014-09-18T00:00:00 Penn Museum promotes peace with Sonia Sanchez Poetic voices will soon harmonize in hopes of inspiring a more unified and tranquil society at “Footprints of Peace,” a featured program celebrating International Peace Day. Maria Zankey 2014-09-18T00:00:00 University to open ‘home away from Penn’ in China China is playing an increasingly important global role economically, socially, and culturally, and has become a significant focal point for researchers and students at Penn. But the only way to deeply know and understand the country—and be able to bring that knowledge back to classrooms on campus—is to have people on the ground in China, says Wharton Professor of Marketing Z. John Zhang. Heather A. Davis 2014-09-11T00:00:00 Penn surgeons make cancer glow green The key to a successful cancer surgery is to extract every last bit of the tumor. If any cancerous cells are left behind, they could cause the disease to reappear in the same place or close by later on. Imagine how useful it would be if the malignant tissue glowed bright green, practically shouting, “Cut me out, I’m dangerous!” Turns out, it can. Katherine Unger Baillie 2014-09-11T00:00:00 We the people of Penn celebrate National Constitution Day On Wednesday, Sept. 17, Penn’s Office of Government and Community Affairs (OGCA) is offering a variety of ways for we the people of Penn to celebrate National Constitution Day, more than two centuries after the Founding Fathers first signed the document on Sept. 17, 1787. Maria Zankey 2014-09-11T00:00:00 Green Campus Partnership recruiting staff/faculty Eco-Reps Penn faculty and staff who hold their reusable mugs and eco-totes high now have the opportunity to make their dedication to environmental sustainability official. The Green Campus Partnership is currently accepting applications for members of the 2014-2015 Staff & Faculty Eco-Reps Program. Applications are due by 5 p.m. on Friday, Sept. 12. Maria Zankey 2014-08-28T00:00:00 Penn's 'ModPo' MOOC partners with the New York Public Library Emily Dickinson and Walt Whitman created an American tradition of radical poetry about 160 years ago, and this year, Penn’s Kelly Writers House (KWH) and the New York Public Library (NYPL) have created a radical way to teach it. Christina Cook 2014-08-28T00:00:00 'Year of Health' covers wide range of wellness issues Whether it’s maintaining an exercise regimen, finding ways to de-stress, or following a doctor’s suggestions, the issue of health is of utmost importance to everyone. For the 2014-15 academic year, Penn is focusing on the theme of the “Year of Health,” addressing wellness and welfare in people’s daily lives. Jeanne Leong 2014-08-28T00:00:00 Philly high school students get a taste of the Penn experience Penn’s Open Learning programs expanded this summer with the Blended Learning Initiative, a pilot program that gives some Philadelphia area high school students a chance to take a college-level course and experience life on campus. Through the “Greek and Roman Mythology” course offered by the Blended Learning Initiative, 24 students attended class in Williams Hall for three weeks in July to study Homer’s “The Odyssey.”  Jeanne Leong 2014-08-07T00:00:00 Penn employee transforms health due to ‘Be in the Know’ The Division of Human Resource’s (HR) “Be in the Know” campaign is a program designed to give Penn faculty and staff better insight into their health status—as well as a $100 incentive, less applicable payroll taxes. Maria Zankey 2014-08-07T00:00:00 Introducing the Penn Center for Innovation Scientific research is one of the main drivers of technological innovation. Whether it is a drug for treating cancer or a new material for building solar panels, every new invention owes its existence to fundamental discoveries about the workings of the world. The boundaries of this sphere of knowledge are principally pushed in the labs and workshops of research universities like Penn.    Evan Lerner 2014-06-05T00:00:00 Penn family welcomes Ffoster, a WDC foster dog With three children under 7, Utsav Schurmans and Andi Johnson already have a busy, full home. Katherine Unger Baillie 2014-06-26T00:00:00 Eagles return to Franklin Field for open practice The Philadelphia Eagles called Penn’s Franklin Field home for 13 seasons from 1958-70, after moving from the former Connie Mack Stadium at 24th and Lehigh. Their first win at Franklin Field was a 27-24 defeat of the New York Giants on Oct. 5, 1958. In the second quarter, Hall of Fame quarterback Norm Van Brocklin connected with Hall of Fame wide receiver Tommy McDonald for a 91-yard score. Greg Johnson 2014-07-17T00:00:00 Staff Q&A with Hikaru Kozuma Hikaru Kozuma says that many people who end up working in student affairs in higher education do so by accident. But Kozuma’s path down that road was purely intentional. Heather A. Davis 2014-06-05T00:00:00 PennPraxis proposes user-friendly upgrades to Fairmount Park Fairmount Park’s appeal to walkers, runners, bicyclists, nature lovers, and the like can sometimes be curbed by the difficulty in accessing some sections of the grounds, which together, form one of the largest urban green spaces in the country. Jeanne Leong 2014-05-15T00:00:00 Staff Q&A with Silvana Burgese In their November letter to the Models of Excellence Committee nominating their manager, Silvana Burgese, for the Model Supervisor Award, members of the Faculty Support S Greg Johnson 2014-05-08T00:00:00 Bringing Louis Kahn’s houses to light at the Kroiz Gallery The exhibit currently on view at Penn’s Kroiz Gallery of the Architectural Archives, “Brought to Light: The Houses of Louis Kahn,” is the first to showcase the houses designed by the world-renowned architect. Christina Cook 2014-04-10T00:00:00 Inside the Morris Arboretum’s ‘jewel’ In 1899, amateur botanist John Morris and his sister Lydia built a “jewel” on the property of their summer estate, Compton. This fernery, a glassed home for ferns, rimmed by a foundation of stone, perfectly tapped into the Victorian era fascination with the plants. Fascination, however, may be an understatement. Some say the Victorians were downright obsessed. The term pteridomania describes this fixation on ferns: Forms of the plant appeared on textiles, pottery, furniture, and even gravestones. Heather A. Davis 2014-03-13T00:00:00 Renovation slated to begin on historic Richards Labs Planted firmly between the Quad’s Gothic revival dormitories and the lush oasis of the BioPond is the Richards Medical Research Laboratory, or Richards Labs, a structure credited with changing the course of modern architecture. Christina Cook 2014-04-24T00:00:00