Community residents at a meeting.The sprawling expanse and remarkable diversity of the city of Philadelphia present endless opportunities for Penn State to impact the lives of Philadelphians through educational programs, student internships, and field research.

The Penn State Center: Philadelphia connects Penn State students, faculty, and staff with Philadelphia citizens, communities, and organizations for learning-research partnerships in support of a sustainable future for the City of Philadelphia. We facilitate community-focused learning, student involvement, and solutions-oriented research to help enrich the lives of urban citizens, improve the quality of communities, and enhance the success of local entrepreneurs.

The Penn State Center: Philadelphia has helped initiate numerous improvement projects, including:

  • presenting informative, hands-on workshops that encourage the efforts of local entrepreneurs
  • delivering community-based adult education that helps to improve the lives of families throughout the city
  • involving Penn State faculty and students in discovering and addressing neighborhood needs surrounding public health, economic development, employment, and community resiliency
  • providing compelling and impactful volunteer opportunities for Philadelphia residents interested in supporting neighborhood needs
  • partnering with the City of Philadelphia in establishing new ways to make neighborhood recreation centers more relevant for residents, while addressing community needs through localized initiatives
  • engaging youth to enhance their skills in self-discipline and entrepreneurship and empower them to make positive changes in their lives and communities
  • investigating new ways of engaging vocational technology education through the development of innovative curricula
  • providing Penn State students the opportunity for designing and implementing urban interventions that enhance their capacity through hands-on learning

Additionally, Philadelphia’s nationally recognized Greenworks plan aligns well with the strengths of the center, emphasizing green infrastructure maintenance and walkable access to parks and recreation resources, as well as focusing on such issues as hunger, vacant land usage, and workforce development.

The center is located in downtown Philadelphia, with a new location due to open near Independence Hall in 2014.

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