Hundreds of newly admitted first-year students will be able to visit Penn's campus for Quaker Days for the first time in two years.
Quaker Days will have sessions for admitted students on five days between April 11 and 19 with morning and afternoon session options. Each campus visit consists of an information session, a campus tour led by the Kite and Key Society, and scheduled time for admitted students to connect with each other. The first of the five Quaker Days begins on Monday, April 11, followed by April 12, 14, 16, and 19.
In past years, Quaker Days attendees had the opportunity to stay overnight in student housing. Sara Cohen, senior associate director in the Office of Undergraduate Admissions, wrote in a written statement to The Daily Pennsylvanian that there will be no overnight stay option and only limited access to classrooms and campus spaces to comply with ongoing COVID-19 precautionary measures.
College senior and Kite and Key President Steven Wren said that tours will follow usual campus tour routes, but tour guides will place special emphasis on "the things they’re gonna experience and [be able] to look forward, whether it’s New Student Orientation, or throwing toast, or senior events."
Visiting admitted students are permitted one guest who must be registered. The University "strongly encourages" visitors to be vaccinated against COVID-19 and wear masks in indoor public spaces during their visit. All visitors must complete a PennOpen Campus pre-screening and show a Green Pass upon request.
Admitted students said they are eager to visit Penn's campus after not having the opportunity to tour in person. Incoming Wharton first year Nikhil Sheth said he is excited to meet his possible future classmates.
“The reason I want to go [to Quaker Days] is to just meet some of the people there. I think just getting an early start on meeting some of the students that I’m going to be working with is going to be really cool,” Sheth said.
Penn Admissions has also planned online events throughout April to allow students who cannot come in person to learn about Penn’s resources and opportunities, such as the four undergraduate schools, on-campus housing and dining, and research at Penn. It will also have programming with perspectives from students of color and resources for first-generation and/or low-income students, according to Cohen.
Some international students said they cannot attend Quaker Days due to the distance to travel but are looking forward to hearing about Penn through the online programs.
Incoming Wharton first year Martina Bulgarelli, who is from Verona, Italy, said she wants to learn more about Penn’s social environment which is different from Italian universities.
“When you go to university [in Italy], you’re very detached from the university itself. If you’re Italian, you won’t go into a dorm. You buy your own apartment and then [live] with friends you already made in high school,” Bulgarelli said. “They do not have rituals related to the universities. I really love Penn with all of its traditions.”
Current Penn students recounted that their Quaker Days experience helped them make the decision to attend and transition to college. Wharton senior Chris-Lewis Da Cruz said he attended Quaker Days in spring of 2018 before committing to Penn and said he believed it helped him smoothly transition into his first year.
“There are still people I see a lot, and the one really good friend I made during Quaker Days — who I don’t talk to as much now — introduced me to my best friends that I still talk to,” Da Cruz said.
Admitted students will also have the opportunity to connect with their peers on the Penn Admitted Student Network, managed by the admissions office.
“All of these programmatic offerings will give admitted students an opportunity to celebrate with their future classmates, hear from current Penn students, learn more about Penn, and start to envision their life at Penn,” Cohen wrote.