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Since 1927, gifts to The Penn Fund—from undergraduate alumni and parents like you—have made a profound and immediate impact on all aspects of student life and learning at the University by providing grant-based financial aid packages to undergraduates, supporting enhancements to academic programs and campus technology, and fostering community through student clubs and organizations. This longstanding tradition of loyal generosity allows donors to support the University’s greatest needs and highest priorities through the general fund, long-term scholarship support, and special reunion class projects.

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2021

Summer Reading List

As the fiscal year draws to a close and we celebrate the official start of summer, we thank our donors very much again for your generous support of The Penn Fund over the past twelve months. Your commitment to today’s undergraduate students makes a real and immediate impact.

In appreciation of your support, we have compiled an impressive list of novels, memoirs, and everything in between, authored by Penn students, alumni, and faculty. We hope that you find peaceful moments soon to sit back, relax, and explore their stories and ideas.

Best wishes for a safe and healthy summer, and thank you again for supporting current and future Quakers!

Book Cover for These Violent Delights by Chloe Gong

These Violent Delights
Chloe Gong C’21

This tale of two rival gangs led by two ex-lovers will set readers’ minds ablaze with fantasy, romance and suspense. As the Scarlets and White Flowers battle it out for power over the city, an undetected contagion lurks in the shadows. Can they turn their weapons to a common enemy before it rules the city?

Book Cover for Think Again by Adam Grant

Think Again: The Power of Knowing What You Don’t Know
Adam Grant, The Saul P. Steinberg Professor of Management and Professor of Psychology

Think Again is a combination of psychology and business advice that illustrates the benefits of doubt and embracing the unknowns. According to Grant, the power of ‘thinking again,’ or questioning ourselves, is directly correlated to more productivity and innovation.

Book Cover for Parenting with Sanity & Joy by Susan G. Groner

Parenting with Sanity & Joy:
101 Simple Strategies
Susan G. Groner W’81

In her collection of advice and wisdom on effective parenting, Groner becomes mentor to parents wanting to be more confident in their most important role. Chapters such as “Parenting Golden Rules” give parents actionable tips, support, and guidance to navigate the common concerns of parenting.

Book Cover for We Still Here by Marc Lamont Hill

We Still Here: Pandemic, Policing, Protest & Possibility
Marc Lamont Hill GR’05

We Still Here is an account of resilience, anger, uprising, and injustice during the tumultuous year of 2020. Using interviews, storytelling, and facts to take on the heavy topics of police brutality, the pandemic, and mass protests, this is a book that sparks hope in readers for a future free of oppression.

Book Cover for The Bottom by Charles Lattimore Howard

The Bottom: A Theopoetic Of The Streets
Reverend Charles Lattimore Howard, PhD C’00, University Chaplain and Vice President for Social Equity and Community

The unique fusion of theology, poetry, and storytelling in this book allows readers to interact differently with the topic of homelessness. Rev. Howard humanizes the unseen, points out the flaws of social justice and even finds God among those pushed to the edge of society in this story about the mysterious journey “downward.”

Book Cover for A Thing with Feathers by J. John Nordstrom

A Thing With Feathers
Joseph J. Jablonski, Jr. C’81, L’87 (written under nom de plume J. John Nordstrom)

A cryptic dream of Edgar Allan Poe and Emily Dickinson dancing together sparks hope in a wannabe writer, ex-lawyer, and man on the verge of a breakdown, who sees the recurring dream as fate giving him a sign. Working as a librarian in a law library, he meets a young lawyer and romance ensues creating this twisted tale of love and law.

Book Cover for The Arabesque Table by Reem Kassis

The Arabesque Table: Contemporary Recipes from the Arab World
Reem Kassis C’10, W’10, WG’10

If you’re looking for a cookbook rich in flavor and baked in culture, look no further than The Arabesque Table. With recipes from the past and present, Kassis shows the evolution of Arabic cuisine and culture. Take a journey with your taste buds to the Arab world.

Book Cover for How To Build A Goddamn Empire by Ali Kriegsman

How To Build A Goddamn Empire: Advice on Creating Your Brand with High-Tech Smarts, Elbow Grease, Infinite Hustle, and a Whole Lotta Heart
Ali Kriegsman C’13

Kriegsman writes about personal experiences in managing her business through trials and tribulations, including a global pandemic, in this honest and humorous crash course all female entrepreneurs should read for a fresh perspective on turning an idea into a successful business.

Book Cover for The Company I Keep by Leonard Lauder

The Company I Keep: My Life in Beauty
Leonard Lauder W’54 and University Trustee

In his memoir of how the renowned beauty company Estée Lauder came to be, the former CEO dazzles readers with stories about his mother and her dream of making her name and beauty products household names. Lauder masterfully weaves a story of family, competition, business and of course, beauty.

Book Cover for Eternal by Lisa Scottoline

Eternal
Lisa Scottoline C’76, L’81

Set in Rome before, during, and after WWII, three friends are put to the test as the city they hold dear, and the friendship they hold dearer, begin to crumble. New York Times bestselling author, Scottoline, effortlessly intertwines love, loss, atrocity, history, and culture in a story about friends learning to live with the ravages of war.

Penn Reflections Podcast

Special Feature

The Penn Reflections podcast, created by Seniors for The Penn Fund.

Listen to stories from Penn undergraduate alumni excelling on – though also still navigating – their career paths, as winding and unpredictable as at times they may have been. Hosted by Co-Chair for Seniors for The Penn Fund, Emily Solomon C’21.

Listen now on Spotify.

Make it a red and blue dream come true.

Penn undergraduate alumni and parents have the opportunity to make a real difference for those who follow in their footsteps or their own students who attend the University today. Participation at any level will create a direct and immediate impact on campus.

President Gutmann with a group of students and Phillie's mascot