Social 26

How prevalent is the party scene/hookup culture at Penn? I'm more of an introvert and prefer serious relationships. I'm worried about feeling left out.

Definitely there if you want it, and absolutely not something you need to be involved in if you don't! It's big in certain circles on campus like Greek life, but there are tons of students who like you are also introverted and prefer other social activities. I'd say surround yourself with people who enjoy doing the same things as you, and you'll never feel left out :) serious relationships are more rare but definitely not uncommon and gets more common as people get older. Again, this probably depends on the social circle.

Kindred Koala, 11/07/19, 9:31PM

Are Penn's Freshman Pre-orientation programs worth it? What are the specific benefits?

Kindred Koala, 11/07/19, 9:26PM

I did the Advancing Women in Engineering pre-orientation program, and I'm definitely glad I did! I think I got to move in 4-5 days early, so I definitely felt like I was more settled in and comfortable by the time other freshmen moved on. My orientation was on campus, so I got to know the city/campus a bit as well. I also got to meet other freshmen and got some great advice for upperclassmen. Overall, I would say the content wasn't anything essential, but the biggest benefit was that it settled my nerves going into freshmen year and gave me a lot of friendly faces in the first few weeks, which can make a big difference.

Some are definitely a bit more intense (PennQuest) and can seem a bit culty lol but definitely give you a great community of people coming in. If you don't do one, you'll also be totally fine, and though it might seem like everyone has friends who did pre-orientation programs when you come in, everyone else catches up in a few days.

I’m not really a social person, and I know no one who’s attending Penn, are the students at Penn easy to talk to?

You'll be fine! During the first few months of freshman year, everyone is in the same position with no one familiar around them, so everyone is looking for new people to include in their new circle of friends. Even people who have a small group of high school friends with them are looking for new people, since you can't stick with the same two or three people forever. Plus clubs are other orgs on campus are a great way to meet new people.

Zesty Zebra, May 23rd 2019, 5:03 PM

What is your favorite memory at Penn?

Every karaoke BYO, for sure.

Absent Aardvark, April 15th 3:47 AM

What is the best College House in the Quad to get a single?

Ware, for sure.

Absent Aardvark, April 19th 12:08 AM

I had a single in Ware my freshman year. It was depressingly tiny, but also pretty cosy. One thing that annoyed me a little was that my friend who lived one floor above me also had a single and it was twice the size of my room.

Rumbling Raccoon, April 25th 1:35 AM

I have an event coming up, where can I find the best photographers on campus?

I would recommend PennLens, a campus organization that does exactly that. Their price is really affordable too. Email:

Note: I'm not involved with the organization.

Rumbling Raccoon, April 19th 2019 9:01 PM

I would ask through friends, or find out who shot events for other clubs on campus and ask them. You can probably find photography credits if clubs post pictures from their events!

Chunky Chipmunk, April 19th 2019 12:10 AM

I joined Penn Lens this semester and second the answer above! Or, check the club/Greek life pages! (Sororities and frats usually will hire a photographer). Instagram also works to find people, but will depend on who you know

Bovine Bear, April 23rd 2019 10:01 AM

Does living in a single during freshman year hinder your social life at all?

Not at all. Almost all of my friends are from clubs or classes, so living in a single hasn't impacted me at all. It's true that having a roommate might make it easier to expand friend groups (although it's a 50/50 whether you like your roommate in the first place), but I don't think it's that important to having a good social life at Penn.

Absent Aardvark, April 15th 8:42 PM

I lived in a single my freshman year and it was a FANTASTIC choice. It was great to have my own space to go back to and just chill. If you can foster a close hall community (which is also 50/50) having a single makes no difference. I hung out with my hall literally everyday in our lounge and essentially was just back in my room to sleep.

Angsty Armadillo, April 16th 11:17 AM

What is the live music scene like in Philly?  How do I find out about concerts/how expensive are they?

So many great artists come by Philly but concerts are soo much more affordable than other big cities like NY.  If your fave artist has new music out, it's likely they'll stop by here and/or New Jersey, which is also easy to get to.  Philly has hosted big names like Ariana Grande, Lorde, and Panic!At the Disco at Wells Fargo Center, EDM artists at clubs like District N9ne, and smaller indie bands at places like Kungfu Necktie.  The most expensive tickets I've seen are upwards of $100s at Wells Fargo Center, but you can still get (faraway) seats around $50 there.  I've also been to concerts for as little as $15!  I usually use Songkick to send me emails about upcoming events at venues I know and artists I like.  Spotify is pretty good at notifying you about your artists, too!

Friendly Fox, April 15 2019 11:53 PM

How costly is it to live/explore/eat in Philadelphia? (restaurants, movies, concerts, museums, etc.)

It's not very costly to live in Philly. Some of the best food is from the food trucks around campus which will usually run up to $8 at most for healthy portions. For sit-down restaurants, some of the most highly rated ones around the city are also cheaply priced with big portions, like Quality Taste (Jamaican) Koreana (Korean food, duh).

In terms of movies, most people go to the Cinemark near campus which is decently priced, although torrenting movies from the internet at home is always free! All the dope museums to explore like the Rodin Museum or Philly Art Museum have regular pay-what-you-wish dates/times where you can get in for at least one cent.

Concerts vary widely but can be the priciest thing on this list; if you're going to the Made in America festival or seeing another big name artist, expect to drop a couple hundred dollars on tickets. But smaller artists or local groups can be a lot cheaper, and some websites can get you student discounts. OpenArts Philly always has deals, and is currently giving out completely free tickets to students to see La Bohème at the opera! In general, if you want to explore/experience Philly, you won't run out of free and fun things to do.

Extroverted Eel, April 14 2019, 19:00

Are residential programs worth it?

It's cool how many residential programs there are at Penn. :) I've heard that some are great; people become good friends, plus there are cool opportunities to explore your interests (trips, workshops, etc.). However, my experience was not amazing... I think it depends a bit on the RA (or whoever leads your residential program) and the size of your hall. I was happy that I got into a really competitive residential program in the Quad, but in the end, we only maybe had 2 events related to the program (besides free food every few weeks), and since my hall was so big, I felt a bit overwhelmed and didn't get close to anyone. The people in my hall are all unique and brilliant, so I regret not making more of an effort to get to know them.

Wallowing Whale, April 14, 2019, 6:50PM