|3910 Irving Street, Philadelphia, PA 19104-6007
House Office: 215.573.3539 • http://harrison.house.upenn.edu
"A big House with a big heart"
Harrison College House brings Penn home to its residents to effect the seamless integration between education in the classroom and the life beyond. Harrisonians take their studies and friendships seriously, underscoring that the life of the mind can be lived with humor, respect, and creativity. The house with the largest number of residents and student staff, Harrison is a big house with a big heart, waiting to partner with student groups throughout Penn’s campus. Harrison’s size, population, and policies allow for unsurpassed opportunities and wide diversity of programming. Through the regular Dinner and Conversation series, Harrisonians invite their favorite members of Penn’s faculty into the house to meet students in a relaxed, convivial setting, giving Harrisonians numerous opportunities to meet the people behind the podiums from Wharton, the College, Nursing, and Engineering, while providing prominent professors the chance to connect with their students on a more personal level. Table Talk Conversations, organized through Penn’s International Affairs Association, invite faculty members for discussions and debates on topical issues. Partnership with Action, a volunteer organization that mobilizes volunteers to help make foreign language education accessible to the community, brings Harrisonians into the wider Philadelphia community to combine community service with academic excellence. Departments throughout campus, such as Digital Media and Design, Music, International Relations, Slavic Studies, Italian, and English, partner with Harrison to showcase the work of their students and foster a greater sense of collaboration between students and faculty.
Harrisonians enjoy the luxury of taking classes for credit and receiving expert advice and tutoring without ever leaving the coziness of their 25 story domicile. Faculty Director Michael Gamer, undergraduate chair of English, meets weekly with residents as the Career Doctor, operating on students’ job applications and fellowships; House Fellow Thomas Safley is Easy Writer, a motorcycle aficionado and undergraduate chair in History, who assists students with academic writing. Students also take courses in cinema with House Fellow and Associate Director of Cinema Studies, Nicola Gentili, and House Dean Frank Pellicone serves up Blood, Sweat, and Pasta, an introduction to Italian/American Literature, including tours of South Philly. Collectively, the Harrison staff offers each semester Cinema in Residence, a film studies course designed to introduce aspiring film buffs to the language and beauty of cinema from all countries, genres, and periods. Harrison also hosts annually the College House Film Festival Grand Finale, inspiring its residents to contribute to the creation of cinematic masterpieces. Penn’s Tutoring Center regularly provides assistance in Chemistry in Harrison 103. Harrison residents also participate in the College House Music Program, where House Music Fellow Michael Sheadel offers piano lessons and provides master classes.
Harrison Saturday Night events provide opportunities for Harrisonians who wish to stay close to home on any given Saturday night a low-pressure opportunity to socialize with events ranging from Quizzo hosted by the House Dean, arts and crafts, dance lessons, and laser tag. Through the Harrison Friday Night movie series, students select either a cult classic or a newly released film to watch together. The Harrison Anime Club also meets every Friday evening, as it has since 2001, to welcome all with a shared interest in all things anime. Once a month Harrison hosts house-wide brunches, bringing the broad array of Harrison residents together through their shared love for bagels, fruit, and yogurt.
If you can imagine it, you can build it in Harrison. Harrison boasts the largest staff of student workers ready to help all bring ideas for social interaction into reality. Residents are encouraged to work with staff to create programs of their own design, to present their research through Harrison’s Academic Work-in-Progress series, create a partnership between Harrison House and the various groups and activities in which they participate to cosponsor events.