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Interim President Larry Jameson announced the implementation of the "In Principle and Practice" framework and an acceleration of the work of the task force on antisemitism. 

Credit: Abhiram Juvvadi

Liz Magill launched several initiatives during her tenure as Penn president, including committees to address hate on campus and a University-wide strategic framework. After Magill’s resignation in the fall, here’s how these initiatives will proceed in the coming months under Interim President Larry Jameson.

Antisemitism task force

The University Task Force on Antisemitism, which was announced during Magill’s tenure, will report to Jameson as it continues its work throughout the spring semester.

In an email sent to the Penn community on Jan. 17, Jameson wrote that the University will accelerate the task force’s efforts. The group, which is chaired by Mark S. Wolff — Morton Amsterdam Dean of the School of Dental Medicine — will provide updates to Jameson with “actionable steps” for addressing antisemitism on campus.

“Penn cannot, and will not, be a harbor for hate,” Jameson wrote in the email. 

Magill first announced the task force on Nov. 1 as part of a campus-wide plan to combat antisemitism. Members include faculty, student, staff, alumni, and Trustee representatives.

A presidential commission to address hate on campus, which will also report to Jameson, named its members and goals on Monday. The group aims to address "the interconnectedness of antisemitism, Islamophobia and other forms of hate, discrimination, and bias” on campus, according to the announcement.

Dean of the School of Engineering and Applied Science Vijay Kumar and Dean of the Graduate School of Education Katharine Strunk will co-chair the commission, which also includes two student representatives, 14 faculty and staff representatives from multiple Penn schools, and three alumni and trustee representatives.

“In Principle and Practice” strategic framework

A strategic framework outlining the University’s priorities over the next century will enter the implementation phase this semester. 

In an email sent on Wednesday, Jameson announced that Penn would begin implementing the "In Principle and Practice" framework over the next year. Jameson added that he and Provost John Jackson Jr. would work together to support initiatives aligning with the strategic framework. 

The Office of the Provost wrote in a statement to The Daily Pennsylvanian that this phase will be led by David Asch, senior vice dean for strategic initiatives in the Perelman School of Medicine and member of the Red and Blue Advisory Committee. 

The framework began with a University-wide initiative, titled "Tomorrow, Together: Penn's Next Century,” that Magill launched in her first months as president. 

As part of the initiative, she created the Red and Blue Advisory Committee to make recommendations for Penn’s future. Jackson chaired the committee, which consisted of 15 members from various schools, including professors, administrators, and two student representatives.

In November 2023 — shortly before her resignation on Dec. 9 — Magill announced the strategic plan, which was informed by the Red and Blue Advisory Committee. 

It outlined several priorities for the University, including accelerating interdisciplinary pursuits, deepening connection with neighbors and the world, and fostering leadership and service. It also identified four principles to shape Penn’s future — the "Anchored University," the "Interwoven University," the "Inventive University," and the "Engaged University.” 

Student advisory groups 

Two advisory groups announced last year to assemble student perspectives will start meeting this semester with Jameson, Jackson, and other senior administrators.

Amid campus tensions over the Israel-Hamas war, Penn launched two student advisory groups last semester to assemble the perspectives of Jewish, Muslim, Arab, and Palestinian students. According to a written statement from the Office of the Provost, the groups will be announced and begin holding meetings at the start of this semester. 

The statement added that the groups “will meet with key senior leaders at Penn, including but not limited to the Interim President and the Provost.” 

Magill opened applications for a group focused on the Jewish student experience on Nov. 16. In an email to the Penn community, she invited nominations for up to 10 undergraduate, graduate, and professional students to serve on the advisory group. The group, which is part of the University’s action plan to combat antisemitism, was intended to allow University administrators “to hear directly from Jewish students about their experience on campus.” 

On Nov. 27, Magill opened applications for a second group on the experiences of Muslim, Arab, and Palestinian students. Student representatives will engage in quarterly dialogues with Magill and Jackson and hold “empathetic and solutions-focused" conversations, according to the email.