Friday, October 7, 2011

University of Pennsylvania Receives $13.6 for Undergraduate Research Program

The University of Pennsylvania last week announced a $13.6 million gift from alumnus P. Roy Vagelos and his wife, Diana, to establish the Vagelos Integrated Program in Energy Research (VIPER), a dual-degree program to be offered by the School of Arts and Sciences and the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences.  This marks the third time the Vageloses have contributed to UPenn's Making History capital campaign.  They have now contributed $21 million toward the campaign's $3.5 billion goal.

“As generous friends and visionary leaders at Penn, Roy and Diana understand the value of clearly focused, interdisciplinary education in helping to solve complex problems, and for this we are extremely grateful," said UPenn President, Amy Gutmann.  “The VIPER program is a unique undergraduate program in its focus on a critically important area of study for our country and the world: alternative and efficient energy sources. We all can be proud that VIPER draws on Penn's unique strengths in combining great interdisciplinary scholarship and teaching to address some of the world's most pressing problems.”

The UPenn press release continues:

The VIPER program is designed to train students for research careers focused on alternative and efficient energies. Students will participate in advanced science and technology courses, specialized seminars, intensive mentoring and several internship opportunities with energy-related laboratories.

Students enrolled in the VIPER program also will work closely with faculty affiliated with the Penn Center for Energy Innovation, who will mentor VIPER participants and involve them in cutting-edge research on topics such as solar energy, chemical fuels, and energy-efficient electronics and materials. Recruiting for VIPER has begun, and the first freshman class will arrive next September.


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