Welcome To The Year Of Health -- The first of many Penn emails came in today (check Spam), this one announcing that this academic year's theme is the Year of Health. Will we get another SweetGreen? Mandatory yoga? Stay tuned.
NewsFebruary 28, 2014 at 9:12 am

Submit Your Ideas For Penn Reading Project

Penn Reading Project is getting a li’l facelift for 2015. For the first time, students can submit book and theme ideas for consideration.  It’s easy: choose a book, then choose some abstract idea from said book as the theme. With previous heavy hitters such as Doubt, Book of Rhymes, and Frankenstein, the bar is set pretty high. Song’s over, Year of Sound. New year, new theme. We’ve come up with a few pairings of our own to get started.

Year of Felinity
Pride and Prejudice and Kitties: A Cat-Lover’s Romp through Jane Austen’s Classic by Pamela Jane
PP&K includes photos of kittens interwoven with classic Jane Austen. That’s something we’d enjoy writing our first college essay about.

Year of Trance
Life of Pi by Yann Martel
This submission is co-sponsored by whoever came up with the Fling theme this year. We’ll look forward to those emails (and events) later in the year.

Year of Socially Acceptable Online Dating
Meet Women on Tinder: The Guide to Dating Women on Tinder by Johnny Suave
We think 2015 is a big year for online dating. OKCupid, Tinder, whatever. This book’s so great they had to say the title twice.

Year of Selfishness
Atlas Shrugged by Ayn Rand
The world is on your shoulders, new Wharton babies. Take the money and run. Who is Amy Gutmann?

Year of Gluten
Grain Brain by David Perlmutter 
A solid choice given the current pandemic nature of Celiac’s Disease. Finish your last bagel before you start the book.

NewsJanuary 22, 2014 at 11:07 am

Promoting Health All Year Long

In light of recent tragic events, we’re excited to hear about the theme for the next academic year. Penn Provost today announced that 2014-15 will be the “Year of Health.” Penn aims to focus on how health touches and affects all aspects of modern society, from business and tech to cultural norms and art.

The calendar of events is still filling up—so if you have ideas for speakers and initiatives, submit them to Troy Majnerick at troy2@upenn.edu or to the good people who plan NSO at NSO@exchange.upenn.edu.

NSOAugust 26, 2013 at 3:24 pm

Penn Sounds No One Wants To Hear

new-image-for-sound1-150x150As all Freshmen (and a few upperclassmen) know, this year has been ceremoniously crowned the YEAR OF SOUND. In keeping with this theme, we at UTB have decided to give you some information about a few sounds that probably weren’t covered in orientation.

The Sound: Sirens
The Reasons: Sirens at Penn have a few possible points of origin. It could be the police chasing down a criminal who will soon be featured in a Penn Alert text your parents will call you about. It could be cops deciding 2am is a good time to shut down your party. Alternatively, depending on how close they are, it could be an ambulance coming to MERT you.
The Move: Run. Though in the third case you probably won’t get very far.

The Sound: Moaning
The Reasons: Perhaps your roommate is enjoying some fun a’la Kate Taylor, or he/she is in serious physical pain.
The Moves: Either way, back slowly out of the room. If stuck, pretend to be asleep, it’s better this way.

The Sound: Scurrying
The Reasons: Whether it’s a mouse in the dining hall, a squirrel in your ceiling, or a cockroach in your brightly colored storage bins, pests are a part of Penn life not mentioned in info sessions.
The Moves: Shriek as loud as possible and climb onto the highest surface available. Adopt it a as pet (If You Give a Mouse Insomnia). Pray.

The Sound: A Pulsating Bass
The Reasons: You live too close to an off-campus frat house. Or some kid in your hall needs house music to “study.”
The Moves: Purchase earplugs. File a noise complaint (editor’s note: don’t do this). Find the party–if you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em.


NSOAugust 25, 2013 at 11:47 am

To-ga Or Not To-ga?

Friends, Romans, countrymen, show me some skin–tastefully, of course. With tonight’s toga party rapidly approaching, we have some basics (and you have some privates) to cover, so listen up! NSOgas will be as diverse as Penn’s student body–here’s what you should expect to see:

The Veni Vidi Vici toga

First coined 2000+ years ago and best recycled by athletes, the “I came, I saw, I conquered” look includes maximum chest hair exposure, designer cologne, and 15 pushups before setting foot outside the Quad. Cover-ups should be rip-able, if possible. Note: Outfit comes with endless sexual innuendos (came, saw, conquered).

The C-Section toga 

Pregnancy jokes aside, there’s no way to escape the first week of school, or, should we say, the “birth” of your Penn career. Those of you looking to make a lasting impression may want to include unnatural tears across the middle of your outfit, showcasing “it’s what’s on the inside that counts.” Let’s just remember that it was the Greeks who ran around nude; not the Romans.

togaThe “I still work at summer camp” toga

Did you work as a counselor in middle-of-nowhere Pennsylvania at the Jewish sleepaway camp you’ve gone to every summer since you were eight? Despite your best intentions, it’s still nothing like Wet Hot American Summer. But the one perk is your annual trip to Six Flags (aka long bus rides where you gain an “intimate” understanding of your adolescence), the perfect location for winning a Superhero cape. What better time to have a cape double as a toga than during NSO? Read the rest of this entry »

Freshman Takes a Tumble (2017 Edition)-- In approximately 28 hours, giant packs of slightly disoriented freshmen will descend (literally) upon the streets of West Philly. Now you actually have an excuse to gawk! Send us your pictures of freshly fallen freshies starting tomorrow night and we'll give you a shoutout. It's almost as good as Penn Porn.
What's HapPENNingAugust 22, 2013 at 1:24 pm

What’s HapPENNing, NSO Edition

what's happenningThat’s right. It’s hap(PENN)ing. NSO is officially underway and we’re one blur-of-an-academic-year away from reaching May. Keeping that in mind, ahem seniors, this NSO season should be a time to play with our new kittens before classes bitch slap their entire faces, respectively. That’s why we’ve come up with a few way(s) to have your own re-introduction to campus.

Thursday, August 22

Freshmen: Move-in. Time to make bffs with your roomie and hall-mates. Prepare to never talk to them again after this year.

Upperclassmen: $3 dollar cover and $1 drinks 9pm-12am at Blarney. It’s the first night of NSO, so pace yourselves accordingly (aka die, in the metaphorical, blackout sense).


Friday, August 23

Freshmen: Penn Library Social 9pm-11pm & PennFest 11pm-1am

Upperclassmen: A re-introduction to Smokes. We hear the renovations over the summer are spectacular.

  Read the rest of this entry »

NSOAugust 21, 2013 at 8:49 am

Where The Party At? (Calling All Freshmen)

RedCupDon’t you hate showing up to a toga party dressed as a sexy librarian…all because you couldn’t remember the theme?

One upperclassman hopes you never again experience that I-must-be-in-a-bad-dream moment.

TheRedCup, a FREE mobile app, collects the deets on campus parties: location, directions, time, etc. But, wait! There’s more! An “active community” of RedCup users provides real-time ratings for the night’s events so you never have to wander the streets of West Philly–gasp!–in search of fun.

If you find yourself wondering about a party’s brotential before setting foot onto its sticky floors, RedCup’s got you covered. Users can see past-performance ratings for event hosts.

So, Class of ’17, you’re all set. You have your MacBook, your perfect schedule with no class before noon, and the lacy pink bedspread set to match your intimate apparel. Now you’ve got the inside scoop on night-life. We’ll give that five stars.

NewsApril 9, 2013 at 5:38 pm

Tyga To Headline NSO: Sadly Only Half-Kidding

Forget all this nonsense about quad performers and Fling headliners– UTB’s got the scoop on what you’ve really been waiting for: next year’s academic theme. Penn has announced that this coming year will be the Year of Sound.

According to the website, “at times, we seek out specific sounds and pay attention. Other times, we try (not always successfully) to ignore or escape sounds.” Super astute, Penn. Sounds fascinating. We at UTB cannot wait for next year. After almost four full months of subletting someone’s crappy apartment and sucking up to the boss at your internship, nothing sounds better than coming back to Penn and having some really lively discussions about SOUND.

During NSO, the really overeager 2017ers will come out of the woodwork and be way too enthusiastic about this year’s accompanying Penn Reading Project, Book of Rhymes: The Poetics of Hip Hop. Maybe Tyga will come back and give a talk about his poetic influences? Here’s hoping.

NewsDecember 5, 2012 at 1:02 pm

Penn Museum Gets Bday Present: Shoutout in the NY Times

Like a tweenage girl who insists upon celebrating her birthday for an entire month, the Penn Museum is making sure ’tis not the last time we hear its name before the world semester ends.

Today’s New York Times profiles the only building on campus we dread walking to more than DRL in honor of its 125th anniversary tomorrow. Happy (almost) Birthday!

If you haven’t been to the museum since Freshman year NSO, we recommend stopping by. There’s free (FREE!!) admission all day tomorrow (and everyday for Penn students), but if you can’t make it, check out these vintage vids from the 1950′s game show filmed inside.