Penn to Celebrate Franklin Legacies of Innovation, Education, Literature With Slate of Events

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Media Contact:Julie McWilliams | | 215-898-1422December 7, 2005

PHILADELPHIA The educational institution Benjamin Franklin envisioned more than 250 years ago that became the University of Pennsylvania will celebrate its founder with "Ben, Penn & You," an eclectic series of talks, exhibits, both actual and virtual, and musical performances.

All Franklin-related activities at Penn are open to the public.

-Ambassador Franklin in London - Tempesta di Mare, a Philadelphia-based baroque orchestra, will present a concert of the music Franklin would have heard in the concert halls of London during his diplomatic missions.  Jan. 28, 2006, at Irvine Auditorium. Additional information is available by calling the Penn Music Department at 215-898-7544.

-Experience Penn in the Age of Franklin: 1740-1790 - At this virtual site, people can view original documents, manuscripts, books, artifacts, essays, images and a timeline for Penn. (

-"For the Education of Youth": Franklin's Vision for Penn - An exhibit of the documents, drawings and maps that illustrate Franklin's proposal for higher education and how he turned this vision into reality. Through June 2006 in College Hall, first floor.

-Educating the Youth of Pennsylvania: Schooling and Society in Colonial Philadelphia - An exhibit of books, manuscripts and artifacts that illustrate the history and present state of higher education in America.  Jan. 17-May 31, 2006, at the Van Pelt-Dietrich Library Center.

-Art Project Space: Brian Tolle - A special commission commemorating Benjamin Franklin. Jan. 21-March 26, 2006, at the Institute of Contemporary Art.

-The Success Seminar: Carrying Franklin's Vision Forward - Participants from several of Penn's academic and administrative areas will be joined by guest speakers in this six-session seminar examining the cultural foundations of success.  Scheduled through April 2006, by limited enrollment. Information and registration: 215-898-7005.

-Benjamin Franklin Press of the University of Pennsylvania - Several programs and classes will focus on the Benjamin Franklin Press, a collaborative letterpress project between Kelly Writers House, the Fine Arts Department and Van Pelt Library.  Spring semester at Kelly Writers House.

-"7-Up on Ben" - Seven members of the Penn community will each spend seven minutes speaking , performing, singing or telling stories on some aspect of Penn's founder.  Jan. 17, 2006, at Kelly Writers House.

-Franklin Symposium - This panel discussion, held in collaboration with the Historical Society of Pennsylvania, will focus on Franklin's ideas about education and will be followed by a performance by Tempesta di Mare.  April 4, 2006, at the Van Pelt-Dietrich Library Center.

-Conversations about Caregiving: Franklin's Time to the Present -This conference will examine the connection between scholarship and the idea of care giving and the impact of both on individuals, families, communities, nations and the world.  Additional information is available at by calling the School of Nursing at 215-898-4522.

Updates to the list of activities will be posted at