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  #61  
Old Posted Feb 7, 2019, 5:22 PM
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According to the webcam, they are installing caissons, which means this is officially under construction

https://public.workzonecam.com/proje...archiveId=Home
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  #62  
Old Posted Apr 6, 2019, 10:59 PM
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Loads of formwork going up and many, many piles going in!

Image Credit: Me





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  #63  
Old Posted Apr 8, 2019, 1:06 AM
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just saw this on Saturday. Hadnt been in that block of walnut in a few years. Looks very different now
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  #64  
Old Posted Apr 9, 2019, 6:29 PM
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They are currently installing massive cassions, as I wait for my free Ben and Jerry’s
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  #65  
Old Posted May 17, 2019, 12:47 AM
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Pretty well finished the foundations.
Starting to pour the core of the highrise section.
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  #66  
Old Posted May 29, 2019, 1:50 PM
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Tower crane currently being erected:

https://public.workzonecam.com/proje...archiveId=Home
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  #67  
Old Posted Jun 11, 2019, 10:24 PM
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  #68  
Old Posted Jun 13, 2019, 12:58 AM
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Penn is already a jaugernaut, but if it made a few tweaks to its future strategy, I feel like it could be a behemoth.

My wishes.

1. Increase undergraduate enrollment by 500-1,000 students. I know colleges like to cap enrollment to keep their acceptance numbers down, etc, but the reality is the country adds 20-30MM people every ten years. It is my understanding most of the country's most elite institutions (Penn included) haven't increased enrollment in years, at least at the undergraduate level.

Further, to stay competitive as a country, we need MORE people receiving education of this caliber...not fewer.

2. Supercharge the Computer (and Data Science) Departments. It's sort of embarrassing Penn seems to have no interest in competing in this field, but rather seems content to continue to position itself as a feeder school for the NY banks.

3. Adopt more elementary schools in West Philly. Penn has the resources and has proven its model works. Time to add Lea or Powell or schools further west to the Penn Alexander Model. I know this was a part of Jamie Gauthier's platform (in winning Jannie's seat). Get on it.
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  #69  
Old Posted Jun 13, 2019, 8:06 AM
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Originally Posted by 3rd&Brown View Post
Penn is already a jaugernaut, but if it made a few tweaks to its future strategy, I feel like it could be a behemoth.

My wishes.

1. Increase undergraduate enrollment by 500-1,000 students. I know colleges like to cap enrollment to keep their acceptance numbers down, etc, but the reality is the country adds 20-30MM people every ten years. It is my understanding most of the country's most elite institutions (Penn included) haven't increased enrollment in years, at least at the undergraduate level.

Further, to stay competitive as a country, we need MORE people receiving education of this caliber...not fewer.

2. Supercharge the Computer (and Data Science) Departments. It's sort of embarrassing Penn seems to have no interest in competing in this field, but rather seems content to continue to position itself as a feeder school for the NY banks.

3. Adopt more elementary schools in West Philly. Penn has the resources and has proven its model works. Time to add Lea or Powell or schools further west to the Penn Alexander Model. I know this was a part of Jamie Gauthier's platform (in winning Jannie's seat). Get on it.
There have been efforts to get Penn to partner with Lea. Thus far, they've balked at the idea. Drexel is building a new school for Powell at uCity Square and has some level of affiliation with them, so I doubt we see Penn do anything with them. They don't really need to, anyway, Powell is a fairly popular / successful K-4 school as-is.

Also, there is no Penn Alexander model, per se. Teachers are drawn from the same pool as any other district school, curriculum is the same as any other district school. Penn pays to keep class size low and does fund a liaison / coordinator type position, but that's it really. It's not the model that's successful (well, smaller class size definitely helps), it's the Ivy League name that entices well-educated upper middle class families to send their kids there in large numbers that really drives the school's success. In other words, it's marketing.
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  #70  
Old Posted Jun 13, 2019, 10:03 AM
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Also, there is no Penn Alexander model, per se. Teachers are drawn from the same pool as any other district school, curriculum is the same as any other district school. Penn pays to keep class size low and does fund a liaison / coordinator type position, but that's it really. It's not the model that's successful (well, smaller class size definitely helps), it's the Ivy League name that entices well-educated upper middle class families to send their kids there in large numbers that really drives the school's success. In other words, it's marketing.
I agree it is marketing to an extent and the self-perpetuating, stabilizing nature of having wealthy families, but you are understating how important the Penn subsidy is. I know a teacher at another, decent Philly elementary and her friend at Penn Alexander so here is my take. At other schools, teachers can be tremendously disadvantaged by the big class sizes relative to Penn Alexander. If you have 30 3rd graders rather than 20 in your class, it is like giving another worker in another industry a 50% workload increase (maybe the analogy isn't perfect but I'm guessing not that far off). Plus Penn Alexander teachers have better supplies and facilities. Teachers in other schools struggle for the basic things (ACs, white boards) unlike Penn Alexander.
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  #71  
Old Posted Jun 13, 2019, 11:57 AM
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Originally Posted by 3rd&Brown View Post
1. Increase undergraduate enrollment by 500-1,000 students. I know colleges like to cap enrollment to keep their acceptance numbers down, etc, but the reality is the country adds 20-30MM people every ten years. It is my understanding most of the country's most elite institutions (Penn included) haven't increased enrollment in years, at least at the undergraduate level.

Further, to stay competitive as a country, we need MORE people receiving education of this caliber...not fewer.
I’m not suggesting that one doesn’t receives a better education at Penn as compared to say, Temple but isn’t it more about collecting the most elite students in the country at these Ivy League Institutions? That being said, increasing enrollment doesn’t create 500-1000 more super-smart people but would only simply open the door to someone who might otherwise attend Drexel or Lehigh or Penn State, etc.
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  #72  
Old Posted Jun 13, 2019, 12:22 PM
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I’m not suggesting that one doesn’t receives a better education at Penn as compared to say, Temple but isn’t it more about collecting the most elite students in the country at these Ivy League Institutions? That being said, increasing enrollment doesn’t create 500-1000 more super-smart people but would only simply open the door to someone who might otherwise attend Drexel or Lehigh or Penn State, etc.
I wouldn't go that far. There's a big stretch between Lehigh and Penn. But, yes, increasing enrollment is only helpful if population growth allows the university to maintain the exact same caliber of students it has had. Otherwise, it only hurts it. I'm sure they are on top of this. More students = more $$$. Schools are always looking to grow when they can do so in a beneficial and advantageous way.
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  #73  
Old Posted Jun 13, 2019, 12:54 PM
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Originally Posted by PHL10 View Post
I’m not suggesting that one doesn’t receives a better education at Penn as compared to say, Temple but isn’t it more about collecting the most elite students in the country at these Ivy League Institutions? That being said, increasing enrollment doesn’t create 500-1000 more super-smart people but would only simply open the door to someone who might otherwise attend Drexel or Lehigh or Penn State, etc.
Hmm...can you define a "better" education?
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  #74  
Old Posted Jun 13, 2019, 12:58 PM
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I wouldn't go that far. There's a big stretch between Lehigh and Penn. But, yes, increasing enrollment is only helpful if population growth allows the university to maintain the exact same caliber of students it has had. Otherwise, it only hurts it. I'm sure they are on top of this. More students = more $$$. Schools are always looking to grow when they can do so in a beneficial and advantageous way.
Would Lehigh engineering and Penn engineering be comparable? I think we would need to drill down to the programs. I also think many time people get into a so called prestigious school to get the moniker to get their foot in the doors and make connections, but for me it is what they do in their careers that says whether they are a sucess or not. In a 5+ years, most employers aren't looking at where you went, but looking at your real world experiences and how impressive they are or not?
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  #75  
Old Posted Jun 13, 2019, 1:14 PM
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Would Lehigh engineering and Penn engineering be comparable? I think we would need to drill down to the programs. I also think many time people get into a so called prestigious school to get the moniker to get their foot in the doors and make connections, but for me it is what they do in their careers that says whether they are a sucess or not. In a 5+ years, most employers aren't looking at where you went, but looking at your real world experiences and how impressive they are or not?
Dunno. I'm sure there could be individual programs at Lehigh that are top notch, and I'm definitely not saying you need to go to an Ivy or top name to school to be successful. Merely talking about the caliber of students it makes sense for Penn to target, which is what dictates enrollment, size, and growth. This building is coming along nicely. I like it.
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  #76  
Old Posted Jun 13, 2019, 1:20 PM
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Dunno. I'm sure there could be individual programs at Lehigh that are top notch, and I'm definitely not saying you need to go to an Ivy or top name to school to be successful. Merely talking about the caliber of students it makes sense for Penn to target, which is what dictates enrollment, size, and growth. This building is coming along nicely. I like it.
ok, cool. I think the coveted Ivy leagues have way more "qualifed" applicants than the schools want to accept. They published how many people apply. Of course, they can dial the number up/down as you guys have said when it suits there needs. Thanks.!
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  #77  
Old Posted Jun 13, 2019, 2:34 PM
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ok, cool. I think the coveted Ivy leagues have way more "qualifed" applicants than the schools want to accept. They published how many people apply. Of course, they can dial the number up/down as you guys have said when it suits there needs. Thanks.!
This. They could probably accept twice as many students and still have a stellar populace.

And who says they'd be coming to Penn instead of Temple? They'd be coming to Penn instead of Tufts or Michigan or Northwestern or Duke. In short, it would bring more capable people into Philadelphia's economic ecosystem which would increase the likelihood that more people would stay and start companies, etc.
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  #78  
Old Posted Jun 13, 2019, 2:43 PM
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I agree it is marketing to an extent and the self-perpetuating, stabilizing nature of having wealthy families, but you are understating how important the Penn subsidy is. I know a teacher at another, decent Philly elementary and her friend at Penn Alexander so here is my take. At other schools, teachers can be tremendously disadvantaged by the big class sizes relative to Penn Alexander. If you have 30 3rd graders rather than 20 in your class, it is like giving another worker in another industry a 50% workload increase (maybe the analogy isn't perfect but I'm guessing not that far off). Plus Penn Alexander teachers have better supplies and facilities. Teachers in other schools struggle for the basic things (ACs, white boards) unlike Penn Alexander.
I'm fully agreed that reduced class size and better infrastructure are contributing factors to PA's success on their own merits, but aside from those things, it's simply not an innovative school. They aren't doing anything different pedagogically. The driving factor is all marketing, and small classes & well-maintained facilities contribute to the marketing push.

Small class size + better facilities & supplies + Ivy League name is mighty attractive to well-educated upper middle class urban parents. The single biggest predictor of educational success is level of education of a child's parents. Penn Alexander's miracle (and any of the other "good" Center City public schools) is not that it has somehow magically solved the urban education problem, it's that it appealed to families that previously sent their children to private schools. That is not a solution you can apply to most Philadelphia neighborhood elementary schools, and what's more, you don't even need Penn to accomplish it (although it sure doesn't hurt). You just need well-educated upper middle class families willing to send their kids to a given school. Look at Meredith, McCall, Greenfield, and increasingly Bache, Jackson, & Arthur. These schools over the last decade have served wealthier and better-educated families, and the first three are fully on par with Penn Alexander, all without Penn's affiliation.
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  #79  
Old Posted Jun 13, 2019, 3:38 PM
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This. They could probably accept twice as many students and still have a stellar populace.

And who says they'd be coming to Penn instead of Temple? They'd be coming to Penn instead of Tufts or Michigan or Northwestern or Duke. In short, it would bring more capable people into Philadelphia's economic ecosystem which would increase the likelihood that more people would stay and start companies, etc.
With the exception of Cornell, which also includes some NY state components among its undergraduate schools, Penn has by far the largest undergraduate student body among the top 20 or so private universities. I very much doubt that, at this point, Penn would significantly expand the size of its undergraduate student body. In fact, I think many alums would prefer that it REDUCE the number of undergraduates to be more in line with the peers with which it competes (and to have more resources, e.g., financial aid, available per student).
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  #80  
Old Posted Jul 15, 2019, 9:05 PM
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As I was driving by today the first load of steel beams was being dropped off. I'm guessing by the end of the week the frame might well be above ground level.
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