Hilariously, Penn Students Named Most Polite in Nation

If there’s one reputation Penn students have, it’s being impolite — especially to workers in the service industry. Penn kids reportedly tipped 40 cents at McGlinchey’s earlier this year. Other waiters and waitresses have similar tales of rudeness and cheapness.

And it’s not just food service. “I sit at this post and some of the kids just glare and keep it moving … no ‘good morning,’ ‘good afternoon,’ or anything … where are some of their manners?” AlliedBarton security guard told the Daily Pennsylvanian in 2012.

But, apparently, Penn kids are nice to delivery people. Really nice. Best-in-the-nation nice.

A new survey from GrubHub and the Huffington Post’s Spoon University ranked the 10 nicest colleges in the country, based on how frequently students used “please” and “thank you” in the special orders box. Penn came out on top.

Really. Penn.

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Time-Lapse Video: Does It Seem Like Construction Moves Slowly?

A screen shot from the time-lapse video of Lancaster Square's construction. Actual video below.

A screen shot from the time-lapse video of Lancaster Square’s construction. Actual video below.

With the exception of Evo, a building that’s going up so fast, it’s apparently an emergency — or maybe it just looks that way from my office window — watching construction projects take shape can be like watching paint dry, or grass grow, or people at IKEA walk toward the Marketplace. And in the case of some notable projects, there can be chasms of years when absolutely nothing happens even after construction has begun, leaving literal chasms in the ground. One of the best examples? The Rittenhouse Hotel, which paused mid-construction due to some very serious developer shenanigans, and left a big hole (not quite a DisneyHole, though) where kids used to play when I was growing up. It was basically an adjunct playground to Rittenhouse Square, though not technically condoned by the Fairmount Park system.

Anyway.

This aerial time-lapse video of the construction of Drexel’s Lancaster Square, submitted by user filadelfea to reddit philadelphia, is, in concept, very exciting. Everyone loves time-lapse videos! But the reality is that even when construction is sped up, it’s still very slow. And some folks just don’t cotton to it. As reddit user gtlgdp writes:

Could somebody please speed this up? I got too bored too fast.

I understand that reaction. Especially at the beginning. But it is worth watching the video from start to finish to see, from that all-encompassing aerial view, exactly what’s involved in a large-scale building project like this. It’s staggering to see all the moving parts and when in the process they’re deployed. Not only that, but the weather! You can really understand the way the snow necessarily interrupts these kinds of projects, or any construction for that matter. And like any time-lapse video, the changes in the weather and the landscape are just, well, pretty. And if you want to see more, go to Drexel’s official site for the time-lapse, here. It’s updated every day. Obviously.

You know what they say: Rome wasn’t built in a day. And neither was Drexel. (But this project is moving along quite nicely, incidentally. John Fry makes things happen.)

Drexel Alum Endows “Entrepreneurial Leadership” Professorship

Drexel University has announced that alumni Stanley Silverman and his wife, Jackiehave donated $2 million to endow The Silverman Family Professor of Entrepreneurial Leadership at Drexel University.

Donna De Carolis, founding dean of Drexel University’s Charles D. Close School of Entrepreneurship, will be the first person to hold the professorship.

The full press release after the jump:

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It’s Skidmore, Owings & Merrill for 30th Street Station

30th street station revision

Rendering of the new vision for the area around 30th Street Station via Amtrak.

As first reported by PhillyDeals, Amtrak has announced the members of the team that will, in the next two years, develop the joint master plan for the Drexel-funded development project around 30th Street Station.

The group will be led by Skidmore, Owings & Merrill (SOM), one of the most influential architecture, engineering, and urban planning firms in the world. They’ll work in partnership with Parsons Brinckerhoff, OLIN, and HR&A Advisors, but be guided by a “coordinating committee” consisting of representatives from (deep breath, now) Amtrak, Drexel, Brandywine Realty Trust, SEPTA, PennDOT, City of Philadelphia, New Jersey Transit, CSX Corporation, Penn, PIDC, Schuylkill River Development Corporation and University City District.

Will there be many meetings? There will be many meetings. (Feel free to send the leftover bowls of candy this way, guys.)

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Drexel Is 3D Printing Live Cancer Tumors

Image16

It seems like every time we turn around, someone is printing something new with a 3D printer. People are 3D printing guns. People are 3D printing houses for less than $5,000. People are even 3D printing sex toys. And now, a team at Drexel University is printing real live cancer tumors.

Why would anyone want to do this?

“Two-dimensional cell culture models are traditionally used for biology study and drug screening,” explains Dr. Wei Sun, the director of Drexel’s research center at the Shanghai Advanced Research Institute and professor at Drexel’s College of Engineering. “However, two-dimensional culture models can not represent true 3D physiological tissues so it lacks the microenvironment characteristics of natural 3D tissues in vivo. This inherent inadequacy leads to shortcomings in cancer research and anti-tumor drug development. On the other hand, 3D tumor models can represent true tumor 3D pathological organizations and will lead to a new paradigm for cancer study.”

Though 3D printing is new to many, Sun has been working with the technology since the early 2000s. In 2002, Sun patented a 3D printer capable of creating tissue samples.

The image seen here is of a living tumor grown in eight days from a printed mixture of cervical cancer cells and a gel-like substance. In Sun’s study, published in the April edition of the journal Biofabrication, 90 percent of the cancer cells survived the process and grew into tumors.

This could change the way that cancer researchers search for a cure for the disease, because the new method would allow them to work with tumors that are almost exactly like the real thing.

Drexel: Your Favorite College Football Player Is Worth $178,000

With talk rising of college athletes unionizing and seeking pay for their services, the Washington Post reports on a Drexel University study on what college athletes are actually worth:

A study by Drexel University and the National College Players Association calculated the fair market value of a player between the years 2011 through 2015 and came up with a figure of $178,000 for football players. The biggest stars, like Johnny Manziel, might be worth as much as $547,000 (from 2011-12). The biggest money, though, is in college basketball, where the fair-market value for a player over the same time frame is $375,000. The players expected to be taken early in the NBA draft, like Andrew Wiggins of Kansas, might be worth upwards of $1.6 million.

The good news for the Sixers? That’s still not as much as Wiggins will make by declaring for the draft and leaving school early. The pros still pay more. For now, at least.

Drexel Meningitis Death May Be Linked to Contact with Princeton Students

There is now more information on the sudden death of a Drexel student from meningitis earlier this month.

Today, Princeton announced the death of Stephanie Ross may be due to contact with a student at the Ivy League school. The Daily Princetonian reports:

“The Drexel student had been in close contact with students from Princeton University about a week before becoming ill,” the email read, citing an investigation by the Centers for Disease Control.

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John Fry to Powelton Village: We’re in Your Corner

Detail from image of UCHS from GreatPhillySchools.org

What would the residents of Powelton Village like to see Drexel University do with the University City High School site? Top of the list: create a new K-8 public school to augment the highly regarded Samuel Powel School.

What would be the last thing they want to see on the site? More student housing.

What is Drexel University’s top development priority for the UCHS property? Build a new, university-assisted K-8 public school. What won’t it put on the site? New dorms.

Neither Drexel University President John Fry nor the civic leaders, architects and planners who organized a March 5 planning workshop at 38th Street and Lancaster Avenue had spoken to each other before the event, but comments Fry made in a post-workshop interview made it seem as though he had read their minds.

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