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Resources for Retired Faculty

Lifelong Learning, Teaching, and Service

Lifelong Learning, Teaching, and Service

Even after retirement from full-time service, many Penn faculty members wish to remain active as mutually supportive and engaged colleagues, teachers and learners. Some retired faculty member seek entirely new ways to share their knowledge and experience. The University and its Schools and Centers support the goal of active retirement through numerous opportunities for retired faculty, including support for the Penn Association of Senior and Emeritus Faculty (PASEF). Under the leadership of distinguished retired faculty members, PASEF plays a central role in sponsoring events and activities for retired faculty, including a Speakers Bureau for members who are eager to share their knowledge with audiences in the Philadelphia area.

Association of Senior, Emeritus and Retired Faculty

The mission of PASEF is to initiate and coordinate activities that encourage retired faculty members to maintain connections among themselves and with the intellectual and social life of the University. Headed by retired faculty, this organization of senior (over 55), retired and emeritus faculty sponsors events that inform, enrich and celebrate the achievements of faculty who have transitioned from full-time university service. PASEF activities include organizing lectures, discussion groups, and social functions to foster fellowship and interaction among members and with the scholarly community on campus; familiarizing members, especially those planning retirement, with issues relating to retirement benefits and retired life; and promoting opportunities for members to render service to the University and its surrounding community. The University provides office space for PASEF on the central campus in the Durhing Wing.  

Association for Senior and Emeritus Faculty in PSOM

The Perelman School of Medicine (PSOM) supports its retired faculty through the Association for Senior and Emeritus Faculty (ASEF).  ASEF serves to enhance the careers of the retired faculty by encouraging them to remain a part of the community of scholars in PSOM.   ASEF serves to support senior faculty by raising awareness of the full range of retirement options available to them. PSOM provides office and meeting space on the PSOM campus, as well an Administrative Assistant.  ASEF members are also members of and are supported by PASEF.    

Campus Teaching Opportunities

Retired faculty members may arrange to teach courses in the School of Art's and Sciences' College of Liberal and Professional Studies or in their home schools. For example, Professor Frank Goodman, who retired from the University’s Law School faculty in the spring of 2014, returned in the 2014-15 academic year to teach Federal Courts, a subject in which he is a recognized expert and that generations of Penn Law students have enjoyed. Nine emeritus faculty have recently taught undergraduate and masters courses through the College of Liberal and Professional Studies. They include Elijah Anderson, Peter Conn, Stephen Dunning, Stephen Gale, John Kenne, Bryan Roberts, and Jorge Salessi.  Faculty members are encouraged to contact LPS directly for more information about such teaching opportunities.

Online Open Learning Teaching Opportunities

Penn has made a major commitment to online open learning, especially through massive open online courses (“MOOCs”) on Coursera, in which numerous retired faculty members have contributed innovative instruction.  Professors Gary Hack and Jonathan Barnett, both emeritus at the School of Design, created and taught "Designing Cities" along with Stefan Al, a junior member of the faculty.  Penn Open Learning welcomes proposals from emeritus faculty members, especially in collaboration with a current active member of the faculty in the course team. 

Lifelong Learning at Wharton

Some Penn retired faculty are eligible to participate in Wharton’s Lifelong Learning  program.  This program serves Wharton and Penn alumni throughout the course of their careers with a variety of learning opportunities on campus, online and worldwide.  Retired faculty  can seek to be among the  consumers of or Wharton faculty and alumni experts featured in forumswebinarsonline videosExecutive Education courses,  and master class/networking events

For those retired faculty seeking to remain well informed, Wharton Digital Press publications and Knowledge@Wharton are also resources valued by alumni and members of the global business community. 

Penn Alumni Travel

Penn retired and emeritus faculty and their families are eligible to take trips sponsored by Penn Alumni Travel. Most Alumni tours include a Penn faculty host. Faculty hosts, often experts in a field related to the country visited, provide special lectures and informal discussions during the course of the trip. Retired and emeritus faculty can serve as hosts. For example, Professor Emeritus Roger Allen, former chair of the Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations group and President of the Association of Middle East Specialists,  Languages and Civilizations will host a trip to Tunisia, October 1-13, 2015. Retired faculty members are encouraged to contact Emilie LaRosa for details about upcoming hosting opportunities.  

Faculty Reading Group

Since 1996, the Deans of Wharton and SAS have funded a Faculty Reading Group. The group meets about seven times a year in an hour-and-a-half  buffet  luncheon seminar setting to discuss important written work. Wharton Professor Daniel Raff facilitates the seminar, and faculty experts normally introduce the discussion.  Each year the seminar explores a theme through articles, original documents, and works of fiction and non-fiction. The objective of the seminar is to engage participants in stimulating cross disciplinary conversations.  Emeritus and other retired faculty are welcome to participate in the Faculty Reading Group and have participated in the past.  For details, contact Prof. Raff at raff@wharton.upenn.edu.

Senior Auditing Program

The College of Liberal and Professional Studies invites lifelong learners to share in the academic life of the University through a Senior Auditing Program.  The Senior Auditing Program invites retired faculty and other seniors aged 65 and older to enroll in most undergraduate lecture courses in the School of Arts and Sciences. The cost is $500 per semester for each course. With prior permission, retired faculty can also sit in on the classes of faculty colleagues. Class registration takes place online. Senior Auditors may enroll in up to two classes per semester.  

Community Engagement

Penn's Netter Center for Community Partnerships provides opportunities for retired faculty to become involved in the local community:

        Retired Professor Frank Johnston (SAS, Anthropology) has served as the co-chair of the Netter Center Faculty Advisory Board and advises the Center’s Agatson Urban Nutrition Initiative, which emerged from his classes and now has more than a dozen affiliated courses.  

        Retired Professor Vivian Nachmias (PSOM, Cell and Developmental Biology) worked at Lea Elementary School in life science areas related to her research, including using CCP labs and developing the school garden. 

        Retired Professor Mike Zuckerman (SAS, History) has been teaching a preceptorial each spring for Netter’s most deeply engaged undergraduate students, using the students' civic engagement activities as the initial prompt for academic, personal and professional reflection and planning.  He is exploring ways that a number of faculty (including emeritus) might be engaged in similar kinds of non-credit bearing, facilitated reflection activities.

            Retired Professor Ingrid Waldron (SAS, Biology) provides a monthly professional development series for School District high school biology teachers.