Penn Graduate Student Center

Graduate & Professional New Student Orientation

If you're an undergraduate new student, please visit the Undergraduate New Student Orientation website.

About Graduate & Professional New Student Orientation

The Graduate Student Center is here to make sure you experience a seamless transition to Penn. The Grad Center will also be your home base at Penn long after orientation is over. So become part of the community right away!

Penn offers several orientation programs for incoming graduate and professional students. Take advantage of

We know you'll be busy, so we've organized the Grad Center activities à la carte. Pick and choose what's most convenient for you!  And please invite your spouse/partner to Grad Center orientation activities!

Tours 2015

First Friday Tours

Friday, September 04, 2015, 04:00 PM - 06:00 PM
Common Room Back (1st Floor)
We need volunteers - volunteer now!

Enjoy the sights and sounds of Philly on this walking tour of the city. This tour will highlight historical landmarks, public art, and famous sights in Philadelphia. The tours will conclude in Old City for the First Friday celebration. On the first Friday of every month the streets fill with art lovers of all kinds who wander among the neighborhood's many galleries, restaurants, and bars.


Foodie Tour Handouts

Stays on the web site until Thursday, December 31, 2015

Did you miss our super fun foodie tours, showing off great restaurants, bars, and shops in different Philadelphia neighborhoods? Don't worry, we've posted the handouts for you below, so you can recreate the tours on your own!

Welcome Events & Fun Stuff 2015

Penn Grad Students Night at the Penn Museum Summer Concert Series

Wednesday, September 02, 2015, 05:00 PM - 08:00 PM
Stoner Courtyard Garden, 3260 South Street

Penn Museum’s popular outdoor Summer Night Concert Series has declared September 2 to be Penn Graduate Students Night!  This event will feature the music of Animus, an internationally acclaimed ensemble offering up an exciting fusion of ancient and modern music with traditional elements of Greek, rock, Middle Eastern, blues, Indian, jazz, and African music. The Museum’s Pepper Mill Café sells happy hour drinks and light fare outdoors, and the Museum galleries stay open to explore. Program moves indoors in the event of rain. Best of all: this event is free with your grad Penncard!

Welcome Reception for New & Returning Jewish Graduate Students

Thursday, September 03, 2015, 05:00 PM - 06:30 PM
City Tap House, 3925 Walnut Street

The Jewish Graduate Student Network and the Graduate Student Center invite new and returning graduate and professional students to this welcome reception. Please bring your PennCard to be admitted.

Wine & Cheese Reception for New & Returning African-American Graduate & Professional Students

Friday, September 11, 2015, 06:00 PM - 07:30 PM
Common Room Front (1st Floor), Graduate Student Center, 3615 Locust Walk

BGAPSA, Makuu and the Graduate Student Center invite new and returning African-American graduate and professional students to attend this event. Please bring your PennCard to be admitted.

Running in Philadelphia

Saturday, September 12, 2015, 10:00 AM - 11:30 AM
Meet at the Grad Center, 3615 Locust Walk

New student runners: Want to learn about good spots for running in Philadelphia, and meet other runners?  Join marathon runner and PhD student Josh Taton for this event!  We'll meet outside of the Graduate Student Center for a bit of light jogging and warmup stretching, while waiting for the group to gather. The run will leave from the Grad Center shortly after 10am, returning at about 11am. Afterwards, we will cool-down and meet in one of the Grad Center rooms to discuss running and racing in Philadelphia.

Lambda Grads Welcome Reception

Wednesday, September 16, 2015, 06:00 PM - 08:00 PM
Room 305 (3rd Floor), LGBT Center

Lambda Grads, the LGBT Center, and the Graduate Student Center invite new and returning LGTBQ graduate and professional students and their allies to attend this event. Please bring your Penn Card to be admitted.

LAGAPSA Bienvenida

Friday, September 18, 2015, 06:00 PM - 07:30 PM
Common Room Front (1st Floor), Graduate Student Center, 3615 Locust Walk

La Casa Latina, LAGAPSA, and the Graduate Student Center welcome new and returning Latino/a grad students. Please bring your PennCard to be admitted.

What to do during Labor Day Weekend

You’ve got 3 days of freedom! Make the most of your time off by exploring some of the fun things happening on campus and in Philadelphia this weekend.

Labor Day Weekend 2015
Show dates

Made in America Music Fesitval
September 5-6
This year is going to be epic with performances from Beyoncé, The Weeknd, J. Cole, Modest Mouse, Death Cab for Cutie, Meek Mill, Santigold, Del La Soul, Metric, Earl Sweatshirt and many more. See the website for ticket information.

Visit a Philadelphia Beer Garden

Try a Philly Cheese Steak!

Check out the live music scene

Franklin Square at 6th & Race Streets includes a miniature golf course, classic carousel, burger joint, storytelling bench, picnic area and more.

Philadelphia Zoo

Adventure Aquarium

Tuttleman IMAX Theater and the Fels Planetarium at the Franklin Institute science museum

Philadelphia Museum of Art at 2600 Ben Franklin Parkway, is free on Sunday, September 1 (and the first Sunday of every month).

Barnes Foundation at 2025 Ben Franklin Parkway, has a fabulous permanent collection of incredible post-impressionist and early modern paintings.

Morris Arboretum – free with your PennCard!


Information Sessions 2015

Information Session Presentations

Did you miss our on-campus and online information sessions?  Don't worry, we've posted the presentations and handouts on our NSO Resources page!

Common Room Hours:

Monday-Thursday: 9AM-8PM
Friday: 9AM-6PM
Weekends: Closed until mid-Sept

Monday, Sept 7: Closed for Labor Day

Graduate Student Center

3615 Locust Walk
University of Pennsylvania
Philadelphia PA 19104-6221