Often described as "the birthplace of college basketball," the Palestra holds a special place in collegiate athletics. When it came time to redo the floor of the storied arena in 2009, Business Services worked with Athletics to take the original flooring and use it to make unique, Penn branded keepsakes such as pens, cuff links, bottle openers, photo frames, pendants and boxes. These limited edition items are featured in 2011 Treasures of Penn gift catalog.
In 2008, Business Services launched PennMOVES– Move Out Volunteers Engaging in Service which collects items that Penn students can’t take with them when they leave campus in the summer – clothes, furniture, appliances, books, kitchen gear, toys, sporting goods and non perishable food, etc. Rather than ending up in the landfill, these items are gathered, sorted and then offered for sale. On average, over 90,000 pounds of items are collected each year.
The event has evolved over the years. In the pilot year, items were collected and distributed directly to local non-profit organizations. For the following two years, we joined with United Way and held a community sale with the proceeds going to United Way. We raised over $45,000 which United Way distributed to charities in local neighborhoods. In 2011, Penn collaborated with Goodwill Industries, one of the world’s largest nonprofit providers of employment training services for people with disabilities and other employment barriers, to provide technical expertise and logistical support. Proceeds from the sale were over $25,000 which benefited Goodwill’s local job training programs including their newest initiative with the City of Philadelphia’s Mayor’s Office for the Reintegration Services of Ex-Offenders.
In 2009, PennMOVES won the University's Models of Excellence Award and was recognized by Recycle Now & Mayor Michael Nutter as a Hometown Hero.To learn more about last year's sale, read a blog by Stephanie Yee, C'08 and Director Penn's Alumnae Association who shares her experience as a sale volunteer: "PennMOVES Turned Trash into Treasures." ...