Penn’s Tradition of Service

The Barry & Marie Lipman Family Prize takes its place in a rich tradition of innovative leadership and service at Penn — a tradition rooted in the founding visions of both the University of Pennsylvania and the Wharton School.

In 1740, Benjamin Franklin founded the College of Philadelphia, which subsequently became the University of Pennsylvania, as an institution dedicated to education for citizenship and service. The development, “of an inclination joined with an ability to serve” was, for Franklin “the great aim of an end of all learning,” as well as the mission he set for Penn.

In 1881, Joseph Wharton founded the world’s first collegiate school of business at Penn with a similar focus. Graduates of the Wharton School would become “pillars of the state, whether in public or private life.”

Both Ben Franklin and Joseph Wharton also believed that knowledge was to be useful and produce, in Wharton’s words, “solutions to the social problems inherent to our civilization.”

Through the Lipman Family Prize, the University of Pennsylvania continues to realize its potential to promote dialogue and discovery across disciplines and to “bring the benefits of Penn’s research, teaching, and service to individuals and communities at home and around the world.

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