UNIVERSITY OF PENNSYLVANIA
The University of Pennsylvania (commonly referred to as Penn) is a private research university located in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA. Penn is the fourth-oldest institution of higher education in the United States, and is one of several institutions that claims to have been the first university in America. Penn is a member of the Ivy League and is one of the Colonial Colleges.
Benjamin Franklin, Penn's founder, advocated an educational program that focused as much on practical education for commerce and public service as on the classics and theology. Penn was one of the first academic institutions to follow a multidisciplinary model pioneered by several European universities, concentrating multiple "faculties" (e.g., theology, classics, medicine) into one institution. Penn is today one of the largest private universities in the nation, offering a broad range of academic departments, an extensive research enterprise and a number of community outreach and public service programs. Penn is particularly well known for its medical school, dental school, business school, law school, veterinary school, social sciences and humanities programs and its biomedical teaching and research capabilities. Its undergraduate programs are also among the most selective in the country.
In FY2009, Penn's academic research programs undertook more than $730 million in research, involving some 3,800 faculty, 1,000 postdoctoral fellows and 5,400 support staff/graduate assistants. Much of the funding is provided by the National Institutes of Health for biomedical research. Penn tops the Ivy League in annual spending, with a projected 2009 budget of $5.542 billion. In 2008, it ranked fifth among U.S. universities in fundraising, bringing in about $475.96 million in private support.