City Semester Philadelphia


Unleashing students’ and communities’ potential for collaborative problem solving.

Students looking at graffiti on wall


The City Semester Philadelphia Program is a unique semester- or summer-long, affordable, urban, educational experience for Penn State students. Students will be placed with community partners that have been chosen based on Penn State Center Philadelphia’s mission of advancing equity, inclusion, and quality of life. In-depth, community-based learning while residing in Philadelphia for the entire semester offers transformative experiences.

people networking

Community Partners

This program fosters collaboration among communities, practitioners, and students from a variety of disciplines through semester-long placements. It is assumed that marginalized communities possess critical experience and knowledge to be harnessed in defining problems and innovating solutions. Penn State will provide the community partner with students who are best matched to carry out the desired community impact.

The Penn State Center Philadelphia

The Penn State Center Philadelphia fosters collaboration among communities, practitioners and scholars to co-create social justice solutions to pressing problems surrounding equity, inclusion and quality of life. The Center provides a platform for reciprocal exploration into the rich complexities of urban experiences and encourages participatory approaches via field-based projects and scholarship that are vital in reimagining the land grant university’s role in the 21st Century to advance the public good.

There is power in learning that is rooted in place, experience, listening and reflection.