Articles by Katie Busch
The Grad Issue: 2019-2020 Year in ReviewAs the COVID-19 pandemic swept the globe, students were forced to cut their spring semester on campus short and transition to online learning.
Students and faculty call on U. to support grad students amid halted researchSocial distancing and travel restrictions have forced in-person fieldwork and research to a standstill, and universities' nationwide hiring freezes are making it harder to secure a job in academia.
Elusive federal funding leaves West Phila. small businesses scramblingOver a month after lockdown, West Philadelphia businesses struggle to receive loans and grants – and even they manage to do so, it is often not enough.
After backlash, SEPTA reverses policy requiring passengers to wear face masksA video of Philadelphia police officers forcibly removing a passenger without a face mask from a bus went viral on Twitter earlier this month.
Students celebrating Easter and Passover virtually still find joy amid the pandemicStudents resorted to online video chat platforms such as Zoom to connect with distant loved ones and attend virtual services over the holidays, and many got creative with substitutes for various components of their religious traditions.
Penn will consider pushing back April 13 pass/fail opt-in deadline after students petitionCurrently, Penn allows students to change their courses to pass/fail grading until April 13, the earliest opt-in pass/fail deadline in the Ivy League by more than two weeks.
As Penn moves on-campus students to high rises, it denies dorms will house COVID-19 patientsAfter tumultuous evictions from campus amid the pandemic, select students managed to stay in their University housing. Now, Penn is asking students to relocate to other dorms in an effort to consolidate resources.
Penn pledges $4 million to support employees, contract workers, community organizationsThe funds will go to affected workers as well as the PHL COVID-19 Fund, which is helping local nonprofits stay afloat during the pandemic.
Spotty Wi-fi and time zone issues: FGLI and intl. students adapt to online classesPenn's first week of online classes was not without technological issues. But many students praised professors for their dedication and compassion amidst COVID-19.
West Phila. restaurants struggle as Penn becomes a ghost town amid coronavirus outbreakWithout student clientele and with coronavirus commerce restrictions in full swing, small businesses around Penn are struggling to make ends meet.
Penn Med opens two drive-thru coronavirus test sites, first of their kind in PhiladelphiaThe sites allow patients to stay in their cars as healthcare professionals in protective gear approach them individually to complete a nasal swab.
After petitions, Penn commits to future on-campus Commencement when 'safe and feasible'After Penn originally announced Monday it would hold a virtual Commencement in May in lieu of a traditional ceremony, some seniors launched a viral petition to persuade the university to change its decision.
Penn alum and Phila. councilmember charged with two counts of federal corruptionJohnson and his wife Dawn Chavous, both Penn alumni, have been accused of participating in a complex bribery scheme that allowed them to profit off of various land deals that Johnson oversaw.
Pa. state proposal aims to counteract expensive housing and Philadelphia gentrificationThe average price of a home in University City has skyrocketed in recent years, increasing from $78,500 in 1995 to $500,000 in 2018. This has caused the displacement of many former residents, with the area’s Black population declining by more than half, according to WHYY.
West Phila. indie bookstore opens to foster community bonding and social justice activismLocated on 45th and Walnut streets, new independent bookstore Making Worlds aims to share the stories and ideas of marginalized groups, as well as foster a space for community bonding.
Penn grad and Pa. state rep proposes monetary compensation bill for exonerated prisonersThe proposal, written by 2006 College of Liberal and Professional Studies graduate and Pa. State Rep. Christopher Rabb, would provide each exoneree $65,000 for every year they were wrongfully incarcerated.
Lululemon campus pop-up closes after second lease extensionThe store was part of Lululemon’s national effort to establish pop-ups on college campuses in order to target students and promote wellness through free events
Widespread asbestos in Phila. public schools prompts health concernsSix Philadelphia public schools and an early learning center have closed since September due to hazardous asbestos damage, and numerous Penn students who attended these schools are worried about their health.
Activist groups and Phila. students protest potential U.S. war with Iran at City HallThe protest was part of an anti-war movement sparked by the Jan. 3 assassination of Qasem Soleimani, the leader of Iran’s Revolutionary Guard.