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Tuesday 09/27 0%
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Wednesday 09/28 60%
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Partly cloudy with afternoon showers or thunderstorms. High 76F. Winds ENE at 10 to 15 mph. Chance of rain 60%.
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Thursday 09/29 90%
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Rain. Thunder possible. High 67F. Winds E at 10 to 20 mph. Chance of rain 90%.
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Friday 09/30 40%
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Cloudy with occasional rain showers. Thunder possible. High 67F. Winds ENE at 10 to 15 mph. Chance of rain 40%.
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Saturday 10/01 40%
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Cloudy with showers. Thunder possible. High 73F. Winds E at 5 to 10 mph. Chance of rain 40%.

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As the oldest design festival of its kind in the country, DesignPhiladelphia highlights the work of thousands of local designers, architects, and creative professionals to demonstrate Philadelphia’s reemergence as a 21st century city shaped by thoughtful design, collaborative business practices, and community engagement.

DesignPhiladelphia highlights the work of designers, architects and creative professionals to demonstrate Philadelphia’s reemergence as a 21st-century city shaped by thoughtful design, collaborative business practices and community engagement.

As institutions of higher learning that share the view that design and design thinking are critical to innovation, Philadelphia University and Thomas Jefferson University are proud to be the title sponsors of DesignPhiladelphia 2016, from Oct. 6-16.

The theme for DesignPhiladelphia this year is “Home,” with the focus on programs that demonstrate how design can strengthen our connections to places, to ourselves and to each other.

Check out some of the events PhilaU and TJU will host during the festival:

THE BEACON
Created in collaboration with lead Jenny Sabin Studio, THE BEACON, presented by MEDstudio@JEFF, is an illuminated art installation featuring events and interactive exhibits to create a hub of “deliberate listening,” showing the importance of empathy in health care.
All festival, opening Oct. 6, 6 p.m.; Jefferson’s Lubert Plaza, Locust Street, between 10th and 11th streets, Philadelphia

NY Immersion at Philadelphia University
An exhibit at the new Fashion and Textiles Futures Center displaying work from the NY Immersion course where fashion design and merchandising students were charged with creating a home collection for Isaac Mizrahi.
All festival, 10 a.m.-4 p.m.; Fashion and Textiles Futures Center

The theme for DesignPhiladelphia this year is “Home.”

The theme for DesignPhiladelphia this year is “Home,” with a focus on how design can strengthen our connections to places, to ourselves and to each other.

Intercurrences: Intervening Design Strategies
This exhibition of selected projects from PhilaU’s Nexus Learning design programs integrates animation, architecture, graphic design, industrial design, interior design, landscape architecture and textile design, and features projects from Sabin+Jones LabStudio and Thomas Jefferson University’s MEDstudio@JEFF.
All festival, 10 a.m.-6 p.m.; Center for Architecture and Design, 1218 Arch St., Philadelphia

Empathy = Action
Listen to an inter-professional panel uniting a brain trust of local leaders, community members, practitioners and students from PhilaU and TJU to brainstorm opportunities for how design can make a more significant impact on public engagement and wellness within Philadelphia’s communities.
Monday, Oct. 10, 6-9 p.m.; Stantec Philadelphia Office, Suite 1100; 1500 Spring Garden St., Philadelphia

2016 Geodesign Forum
The Forum will focus on planning and design of the built environment for sustainable, active, healthier communities with a strong sense of place. It will feature presentations from Maria Aiolova, Kristen Kurland, Robert Cheetham, David Tulloch and Russ McIntire.
Monday, Oct. 10, 1-6 p.m. (reception to follow); DEC Forum

Textile + Shelter
The exhibit presents projects from the IDEA, the Interdisciplinary Design and Experimental Architecture Studio of PhilaU, which is supported by a 2015 NCARB Award. Architecture, textile, fashion and industrial design students examine the five layers of the human skin in this intriguing exhibition.
Monday, Oct. 10, 6-8:30 p.m.; Thursday, Oct. 13, 10 a.m.-5 p.m.; Friday, Oct. 14, 10 a.m.-6:30 p.m. (final date followed by a reception); The Design Center

The Thread Starts Here: From Fiber to Fashion
See the official opening of the Fashion and Textiles Futures Center, a hub for innovation through the integration of education, research and practice. There will be series of short talks, demos and hands-on activities in textiles and fashion.
Thursday, Oct. 13, 2-6 p.m.; Hayward Hall

Braided Streams: Water & Architecture will explore the poetics of water and architecture through issues of sustainability and the built environment.

How Technology Is Changing Our Homes
Would your cooking improve if you had a voice and gesture recognition sous chef to guide you through recipes? What if you had a hands-free, house-wide communications system or a smart bathroom? Discuss how technology is changing our homes with Verizon experts and PhilaU faculty.
Thursday, Oct. 13, 2-6 p.m.; DEC Forum

Interiors Philadelphia: A Conversation on Design
Learn more about the Philadelphia interior design scene at a panel discussion featuring area industry leaders and rising stars.
Thursday, Oct. 13, 7:30-8 p.m.; Kanbar Campus Center

Braided Streams: Water & Architecture
Explore the poetics of water and architecture through four lectures addressing issues of sustainability and the built environment, covering water environments of both plenty and of scarcity.
Friday, Oct. 14, 1:30-6:30 p.m. (followed by a reception); DEC Forum

Richard Hass, assistant professor of psychology with expertise in music and creativity, talked about plagiarism in music and the recent lawsuit involving the rock group Led Zeppelin in an article in The Atlantic.

Part of the problem was that “particularly in their early days, Led Zeppelin had the habit, time-honored in blues music, of jamming around a known tune to construct new songs. Maybe they just got a bit lazy about hiding the origins,” Hass said in the Sept. 14 article.

 

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The Career Fair attracted approximately 50 firms recruiting full-time employees and interns.

Some 350 students attended Philadelphia University’s Career and Internship Fair Sept. 22 to network with representatives from some 50 firms recruiting full-time employees and interns equipped with skills needed to succeed in the 21st-century workplace.

The event, which attracted such employers as Anthropologie, Federal-Mogul Corp., Pennsylvania Office of the Attorney General, Verizon Wireless, Urban Outfitters and Bed Bath & Beyond, is one of several offered each year by the Office of Career Services. Other companies attending included Allied Construction Services II, Delphic Digital, Five Below, Ross Stores and PVH, which includes the brands Tommy Hilfiger, Calvin Klein, IZOD and more. Several new firms participated this fall, including Bloomingdale’s, L Brands, Steven Singer Jewelers, Ann Taylor and New York Life Insurance.

A number of PhilaU alumni also returned to campus to recruit for their firms. Textile engineer Alexa Woodruff ’10, M’12, a product engineer at Federal-Mogul, said about a dozen PhilaU alumni currently work as textile engineers at her firm. “For anything textile and engineering related, we seek out Philadelphia University graduates and students because we’re confident in their backgrounds,” she said at the event.

Some 350 students attended Philadelphia University’s Career and Internship Fair.

Some 350 students attended Philadelphia University’s Career and Internship Fair.

Employers recruited undergraduate and graduate students from a wide range of programs, including business, construction management, fashion merchandising and management, fashion design, psychology, engineering, communication, law and society, textile design, textile materials technology and textile engineering.

The Careers in Healthcare Panel, another PhilaU career event scheduled for Oct. 20, will feature experts discussing various healthcare disciplines.​

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With Mark Havens’ new book, he captures Wildwood—and its many motels—in a state of transition.

With Mark Havens’ new book “Out of Season: The Vanishing Architecture of the Wildwoods,” the Philadelphia University assistant professor of industrial design captures the popular Jersey Shore spot in a state of transition. Its many motels—neon and brightly colored icons of the past—are being demolished at a record rate. Havens describes why he set out to photograph and celebrate these architectural marvels, what the future holds for Wildwood and his favorite building on PhilaU’s campus.

What was your inspiration to create this book?
My grandmother began going to Wildwood in the late 1930s and that tradition was passed on to multiple generations of my family. Beginning in the 1970s, it became a place where our extended family would gather for a one-week vacation every August. I was really blessed. For many years, we had four generations together there all at once.

This summer marked our 45th year in a row of getting together. It’s still a very special time for us all. Because I grew up with these motels as the backdrop of my summers for as long as I could remember, they seemed as immovable as mountains to me. But when they began to be demolished en masse, I realized they were something I needed to capture before they disappeared. That was over 10 years ago.

 Havens has traveled to Wildwood for the past 45 summers with his family.

Havens has traveled to Wildwood for the past 45 summers with his family.

What were some of the biggest challenges along the way?
At the start of the project, I wasn’t making art. I had no experience with photography and I wasn’t interested in learning. I paid a professional photographer to come down to Wildwood with me to shoot the motels that I pointed at.

The results were fine, but there was just something about them wasn’t getting what I was after. After exhausting every other possibility, I grudgingly purchased a secondhand 35mm camera and started—very tentatively—taking photographs.

As soon as I began, though, it was like someone flipped a switch. I’d suddenly found a medium with this wondrous immediacy to it that I’d never known before. It was exhilarating. The photographs were terrible, but I’d found a medium that I could create with.

The demolitions were much more frequent when I began. Each time I would take a trip to the town it seemed like I was greeted with new dirt lots where motels had been just a few days before. It was a difficult circumstance to try and learn in—a little like trying to figure out how to be a doctor by working in an emergency room. There was just no room for error. If I got it wrong (which I did quite a lot), there was very little chance I’d get to try again. The motels were disappearing that fast.

I remember a number of occasions during that time when I’d photograph a motel but get some part of the process wrong and not get any usable images. I’d return to try again only to find the motel had been demolished. For a time, it seemed like the more I shot, the faster the motels seemed to fall.

Eventually, though, I began to learn, and just as importantly, I began to quantify what exactly it was I was trying to capture. The deserted nature of the photographs (which turned into a primary component of the artistic statement I was trying to make with the project) actually started as a practical measure. I began by photographing several motels during the tourist season, but I soon realized that even a single car parked in front of a motel obscured a huge amount of what I wanted to show. I then tried photographing deep into the off-season, but the motels were fully closed up and dark, almost featureless.

Sometimes, it seemed like the more Havens shot, the faster the motels fell.

Sometimes, it seemed like the more Havens shot, the faster the motels fell.

I eventually figured out there were only two very small windows when it was possible to make the images that I envisioned: just prior to the beginning of the tourist season (at the beginning of May) and just after it concluded (at end of September). Only then were the lights on, the pools full, the chairs and plastic palm trees out, yet no one was around.

Once I began to shoot photographs devoid of people or activity of any kind, I realized the isolation actually clarified the bold architectural forms and, more importantly, served as an analogue of the larger situation. Many of these buildings were empty not simply because the summer is over but because the culture, for better or worse, has moved on.

I realized what I was actually trying to do was to bring out the interplay of an idealized past and its inexorable disappearance. People actually do inhabit these images but only by inference and allusion, and in many ways, it’s this physical absence from which the work draws its strength. Impressions are made at a more elemental depth, below explicit communication, echoing that most universal of all human experiences: the inexorable passage of time what’s left behind in its wake.

Architecturally, how different will Wildwood look 10 years from now?
My hope is that more of the motels are preserved and adapted for modern tastes while still retaining the original design features that made them unique. The Caribbean and The Shalimar are great examples of this approach succeeding.

The recession temporarily slowed the pace of motel demolitions in Wildwood, but now that the economy is starting to move again, more motels are disappearing. In addition to the demolitions, one of the other trends that seem to be getting more prevalent in Wildwood is “condo-ization.”

Havens hopes more of the motels are preserved and adapted for modern tastes while still retaining the original design features that made them unique.

Havens hopes more of the motels are preserved and adapted for modern tastes while still retaining the original design features that made them unique.

Developers will purchase a motel, remove the color scheme and signage (including the neon), add beige vinyl siding and a peaked shingle roof then sell each motel room off individually. The result is a structure that bears very little resemblance to what it once was.

What are some of your favorite photos?
It’s hard for me to talk about favorites. I think a lot of the reason I value certain images isn’t really tied to content but instead is driven by how difficult it was to get a particular shot. If I had to try and get an image multiple times because the light or the weather or my equipment didn’t cooperate or if the owner of the motel was cantankerous or something of that sort, I find I’ll value an image more highly.

That’s why it was so great—and necessary—to work with a good editor. Several years ago, I had the project pared down to 350 images (from an overall body of about 13,000), and I swore there was nothing left to cut. But that’s way beyond the length of a strong fine art photography book, so I began working with a very talented editor named Barbara Cox.

We had many intense conversations. I had to hear some very difficult things from her, but with that help, I could get the final body of work down to 105 images. I think it’s a much stronger book and series as a result.

What’s your favorite piece of architecture at PhilaU?
My favorite, by far, is The Design Center. It’s so beautiful and serene—a real treasure. In addition to the architecture itself, it seems so well-suited to its landscape.

The project originally began with about 13,000 photos. With the help of an editor, Havens got the final body of work down to 105 images.

The project began with 13,000 photos. With the help of an editor, Havens got the final body of work down to 105.

The Tandem conference will show how product development is a collaborative process.

The Tandem design conference will show how product development is a collaborative process.

The second annual student-run design conference Tandem will be held at Philadelphia University on Oct. 1 and 2.

“Tandem is a conference that helps students go beyond the sketchbook and into the world of professional design,” said conference co-organizer and industrial design student Louise Sandstroem ’17. “Our main goal is to depict the life of a designer and show how product development is a collaborative process between many fields.”

The conference will be broken into multiple lectures and workshops featuring different professionals from a variety of disciplines to shed light on their processes. Speakers include PhilaU graphic design communication adjunct professors Steve DeCusatis and Mario Zucca; associate professor of industrial design Lyn Godley; industrial design alumni Benjamin Stack ’14, Carter Agvent ’15 and Renee Kakareka ’16; and graduate textile design student Insiyah Shahpurwalla ’17. Reid Schlegel from Frog Design; Richard Funnell from Luxion; designer, illustrator and educator Andrea Pippins; and Russel Walters from Johnson & Johnson will be presenting as well.

Tod Corlett, director of PhilaU’s industrial design programs and William L. Jasper Chair for Industrial Design, has high hopes for the upcoming student meeting.

“Last year, the content outshone many professional conferences I’ve attended,” he said. “It’s a great example of how PhilaU students work across discipline lines, collaborate, set their own goals and lead, rather than just imitating the working world.”

Visit here for more information and to register.

Philadelphia University’s Physician Assistant Studies Program in New Jersey is helping to fill the need for healthcare professionals in the state, The Star-Ledger reported Sept. 16. This is the second year of the Atlantic City-based program, which follows the same curriculum as the highly regarded program on PhilaU’s main campus.

“I think there is an attraction to be a PA rather than a doctor because the amount of school you need is less, and most people, at the end of the day, want to take care of patients,” said Jesse Coale, director of PhilaU’s PA program.

francar

Jessica Francar traveled throughout Jordan and Iraq where she studied their languages and cultures and learned about the injustices occurring there.

Philadelphia University community and trauma counseling student Jessica Francar is one of the five recipients of the Melanie Foundation 2016 Scholarship for her work with children and adults in traumatic situations.

The scholarship goes to graduate-level students in the mental health field who demonstrate commitment to helping others through the exercise of empathy and wisdom, according to the Foundation. The recipients convey their commitment to their studies both inside and outside the classroom through research, volunteering and work experience.

Upon graduating from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, where she earned degrees in social work and history and certificates in global cultures and African studies, Francar traveled throughout Jordan and Iraq, studying the languages and cultures and learning about the injustices occurring there. She designed, implemented and managed trauma-sensitive “child-friendly spaces” for vulnerable children displaced by ISIS, advocated for women who had been kidnapped by ISIS and provided educational assistance to refugees.

“I am really thankful for the trust and support the Melanie Foundation has in me by choosing me as a recipient of this generous scholarship,” Francar said. “I hope that I can honor that confidence through my words and actions in my personal and professional life in the years to come.”

 

PhilaU has reduced its carbon footprint by 44 percent since 2011.

PhilaU has reduced its carbon footprint by 44 percent since 2011.

The Climate Leadership Network named Philadelphia University one of the finalists in the Second Nature Climate Leadership Awards.

Done in partnership with the U.S. Green Building Council’s Center for Green Schools, the awards recognize innovative and advanced leadership in sustainability, climate mitigation and resilience at signatory campuses of the Climate Leadership Commitments.

“The goal of the American College and University President’s Climate Commitment is to set an example for the world concerning how to create climate stability and a pathway toward climate recovery,” said J. Thomas Becker, PhilaU’s associate vice president for operations. “Philadelphia University has worked hard to create inroads to that positive outcome by partnering with Honeywell and others. We have reduced our carbon footprint by 44 percent since 2011 while at the same time lowering our costs. Our students are active participants with our sustainability clubs and in the classroom, and our campus living-laboratory approach supports them in becoming leaders in the field.”

Visit here to read more about PhilaU’s sustainability and climate innovation efforts.

The Business of Fashion praised the University for its transdisciplinary approach that includes a strong grounding in business and marketing, as well as sustainability.

The Business of Fashion praised the University for its transdisciplinary approach that includes a strong grounding in business and marketing, as well as sustainability.

Further showing Philadelphia University’s international reputation in the fashion industry, the undergraduate and graduate fashion programs were once again ranked among the top worldwide, according to the Global Fashion School Rankings 2016 by the highly regarded Business of Fashion.

Overall, PhilaU undergraduate fashion programs ranked 24th and graduate fashion programs ranked 17th in the world. In addition, PhilaU’s scores in global influence, learning experience and long-term value—the ranking’s three major indicators of quality—improved over last year.

The Business of Fashion praised the University for its transdisciplinary approach that includes a strong grounding in business and marketing, as well as sustainability. The rankings also showed that students praised PhilaU’s faculty, citing their accessibility and commitment to student development, and they were highly content with campus buildings and work facilities, including state-of-the-art weave, knit and print facilities.

“Philadelphia University provides a unique, innovative and collaborative way of learning how to not only be a designer but work productively and successfully as a team in the fashion industry,” said one PhilaU student quoted in the ranking.

After last year’s impressive showing in the rankings, more prospective students visited University open houses to learn about the fashion programs, said fashion design program director Sheila Connelly. The high rankings also directly led to representatives from Spain-based fashion retailer Zara to visit campus and share details with students about its recruitment program. “That was huge,” she said.

After last year’s impressive showing in the rankings, more prospective students visited University open houses to learn about the fashion programs.

After last year’s impressive showing in the rankings, more prospective students visited University open houses to learn about the fashion programs.

The Business of Fashion’s Global Fashion School Ranking aims to provide an objective assessment of the top undergraduate and graduate fashion programs around the world, based on 60 different data points gathered from 54 participating institutions, surveys completed by over 10,000 students and alumni, feedback from over 130 human resources professionals, global fashion influencers, fashion school academics and its own analysis.

“Our ranking in the Business of Fashion validates the strength of our fashion programs and our ability to connect with our students and alumni across disciplines,” said Nioka Wyatt, director of PhilaU’s fashion merchandising and management program. “This will allow us to grow domestically and internationally and showcase our value proposition throughout the business of fashion and beyond.”

Along with the top Business of Fashion ranking, PhilaU has been twice named one of the Top 50 Fashion Schools in the World by Fashionista, a leading international web site for fashion news and trends. In addition, the University is among the top 50 fashion schools in the world, according to CEOWORLD Magazine. The publication’s 2016 Best Fashion School rankings were based on academic reputation, employer reputation, quality of teaching and diversity, as well as learning experience, influence and value.

PhilaU fashion programs include undergraduate programs in fashion design, textile design, fashion merchandising and management and graduate programs in textile design, global fashion enterprise and starting in fall 2017, fashion design management.

“The breadth of our academic programs in fashion is what makes us so impressive,” Connelly said.

Read Business of Fashion’s full report on PhilaU here.

Philadelphia University’s highly regarded architecture and interior architecture programs were ranked among the top 10 in the nation in several categories in the latest report by College Factual.

PhilaU’s architecture program was named the 9th top-ranked program nationally in the architecture and related services category, and also scored high marks for most focused (8th nationally), best value (17th) and most popular (19th).

PhilaU’s interior architecture program was ranked 2nd for most popular, 5th for most focused and 6th in the category of highest-paid graduates.

College Factual rankings are based on data including graduate salary information and overall university quality.