Leadership Message

The University of Pennsylvania is a school of many firsts. Penn is America’s first university, and our founder, Benjamin Franklin, was America’s first internationally renowned scientist, inventor, and businessman. We are home to the America’s first medical school and its first teaching hospital. The world’s first electronic general-purpose computer—ENIAC—was constructed at Penn. And Penn achieved yet another momentous first when industrialist and entrepreneur Joseph Wharton established the Wharton School, the world’s first collegiate business school.

In this new century we are pleased to introduce the Penn Wharton China Center (PWCC). It represents the next step in Penn’s longstanding engagement with China, which began when Chinese student Dr. Chaun Moon Hun (周夢熊) enrolled in Penn’s School of Dental Medicine in 1896. In more than a century since, the relationship has grown broad and deep, and today many thousands of Chinese people have connections to Wharton and Penn.

PWCC will act as a further bridge joining Penn and China, facilitating bilateral collaboration in research and education. It will serve as a vibrant center for exchange of knowledge between China and Penn’s faculty, students, alumni, and friends. As such, it will further advance the objectives of the Penn Compact 2020, our vision for the future of Penn, which challenges the University to make great strides in inclusion, innovation, and impact.

Penn’s engagement with China reflects its longstanding role as a leading global university. The Center represents our continuing commitment to Penn’s and China’s shared past, our dynamic present, and a future of cross-cultural research and discovery. Together we will create new knowledge to help us navigate the complex global challenges that lie ahead.

John Jackson

John L. Jackson, Jr.
Provost of the University of Pennsylvania

PREFERRED HEADSHOT_DeanErikaJames-20200812-full-6_crop2_edited

Erika James
Dean of the Wharton School