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March | April 2024
Vol. 122, No. 4


We Should Be Friends

For the past 20 years, Aaron Karo W’01 and Matt Ritter L’05 have been part of a unique friendship tradition called “Man of the Year” with their childhood buddies. Now, the fellow comedians and writers have launched a podcast of the same name to encourage other men to create, maintain, and grow their own friendships.
By Dave Zeitlin

Admissions in Transition

From test-optional applications, to questions about ChatGPT, to the Supreme Court’s new limitations on considering race and ethnicity, college admissions are in flux. Admissions Dean Whitney Soule dissects the current state of play and how prospective applicants can navigate it.  
By Trey Popp

The Chip Zien Show

His acclaimed starring turn in Harmony was cut short by the harsh economics of Broadway musicals, but the theater, film, and TV stalwart is still looking ahead after seven decades in the spotlight.
By Jonathan Takiff

Shattering Violence, Shimmering Prizes

Emily Wilson’s new translation of the Iliad brings the strange and brutal beauty of Homer’s world into the English-speaking now.
By Stephanie McCarter


From the Editor | Friendship gurus, a life on stage, admissions now.
Letters | On campus controversy and more.


Alumni Voices | Too much will.
Elsewhere | A joyful crossing (eventually).
Expert Opinion | Brand consciousness.


Action Plan | The head of Penn’s task force on combating antisemitism on progress so far.
Leadership | Ramanan Raghavendran EAS’89 W’89 LPS’15 elected trustees chair.
MLK Symposium | Interfaith Commemoration highlights Black–Jewish allyship. Plus: Candlelight vigil.
Heard on Campus | The 1964 Civil Rights Act and the limits of legislation.
In Memoriam | Interim president and transformational Nursing Dean Claire Fagin Hon’94.
Gifts | $83.9 million for SAS from Roy Vagelos C’50 Hon’99 and Diana Vagelos.
Climate Science | What Penn (and especially Olivia Fielding C’21) did at COP28.
Community Engagement | David Grossman’s 25 years directing Civic House.
Sports | Women’s lacrosse’s senior standouts Niki Miles and Izzy Rohr.


Exhibition | Barbara Earl Thomas’s The Illuminated Body at Arthur Ross Gallery.
Musical Theater | Penn alumni put on a show about The Angry Grammarian.
Books | A 19th-century divorce case still resonates today. Strong Passions.
Briefly Noted


Debra Ross C’91 has Rochester, NY, ready for this April’s solar eclipse.
Nate Hake C’08 is going his own way with Travel Lemming.
Grace “Sunny” Choi W’11 will be “breaking” at the Olympics in Paris.
Cherelle Parker G’16 LPS’16 is Philadelphia’s 100th—and first woman—mayor.


Old Penn | Looking back at the solar eclipse of 1869.