University of Pennsylvania Launches Faculty Recruitment Initiative With Anonymous $10 Million Gift

PHILADELPHIA -- Penn Integrates Knowledge, a University-wide initiative to recruit faculty members to the University of Pennsylvania whose research and teaching exemplify the integration of knowledge across disciplines, has received its first significant gift.

The $10 million gift from an anonymous donor will create four endowed University professorships, which will be joint appointments between Penn schools.  

"I am thrilled to launch this ever-important initiative with such a spectacular gift," said University President Amy Gutmann, "one that recognizes both that Penn must build on its significant interdisciplinary strength in order to move to the next level and also that no resource is more vital to the life of a world-class university than its faculty."

The newly created professorships will be awarded to distinguished faculty who have demonstrated exceptional intellectual achievement across disciplines.

"Through their research, teaching and University service," Gutmann said, "these newly recruited faculty members will prominently add to the University ability to address the most challenging intellectual and practical issues of our times."

In making the gift, the donor said he was "delighted to give Dr. Gutmann the tools she needs to accomplish her ambitious plans for Penn." He described the initiative as catalyst for transforming the University.

A recruitment process, led by a nomination committee made up of the provost and the deans of Penn 12 schools, will begin immediately and will supplement ongoing searches conducted by departments and schools.  The president will approve the finalists, who will be appointed through the normal process.

Integrating knowledge is one element of the Penn Compact, Gutmann's three-point plan to take Penn from excellence to eminence and to equip the University with the resources it needs to tackle some of the most complex and urgent questions facing the world today.  Increasing access to a Penn education and building the University engagement with local and global communities are the two other components of the Compact.