An update to the Penn community

At Penn, we pursue our academic mission guided by fundamental commitments to upholding freedom of inquiry and open expression, while maintaining a safe, inclusive, and respectful campus community.

Over the last 24 hours, we have closely monitored the protest that evolved into an encampment on College Green. We have vigilantly supported the rights of our community members to protest peacefully. Representatives from Open Expression, University Life, and faculty leadership have engaged with some of the protestors, with limited access to the broader group.

Unfortunately, blatant violations of University policies and credible reports of harassing and intimidating conduct compel us to protect the safety and security of our campus community.

The encampment itself violates the University’s facilities policies. The harassing and intimidating comments and actions by some of the protesters, which were reported and documented by many in our community, violate Penn’s open expression guidelines and state and federal law, including Title VI of the Civil Rights Act. All members of our community deserve to access our facilities without fear of harassment or being subjected to discriminatory comments or threats.

The vandalism of the statue in front of College Hall with antisemitic graffiti was especially reprehensible and will be investigated as a hate crime.

As we have repeatedly emphasized, we will uphold free speech and the productive exchange of ideas, but we will not allow any actions that harass, threaten, or intimidate others. We have also said that the safety of our community is paramount, and we will live up to our commitment.

I am deeply saddened and troubled that our many efforts to respectfully engage in discourse, support open expression, and create a community that is free of hate and inclusive for everyone have been ignored by those who choose to disrupt and intimidate.

We have notified the protestors of their legal and policy violations. Failure to disband the encampment immediately and to adhere to Penn’s policies will result in sanctions consistent with our due process procedures as they apply to students, faculty, and staff.


J. Larry Jameson, MD, Ph.D.
Interim President

John L. Jackson, Jr.

Craig R. Carnaroli
Senior Executive Vice President