Study at Penn

The University of Pennsylvania provides an Ivy League education in a vibrant urban setting. Founded by Benjamin Franklin, it was America’s first university and today is one of the most respected educational and research institutions in the country.



Penn offers scores of degree-granting programmes at its nationally ranked graduate schools: Education, Law, Arts and Sciences, Dental Medicine, Design, Engineering and Applied Sciences, Nursing, Social Policy and Practice, Veterinary Medicine, the Annenberg School for Communication, the Perelman School of Medicine, and the Wharton School of Business.

The breadth of academic options means U.K. students can focus in on professional studies or branch out, taking interdisciplinary courses that will enhance not only their education but the rest of their lives.



Candidates must be British citizens who normally reside in the United Kingdom. They must have attended U.K. secondary schools and be graduates (by the summer following their application) of a U.K. university.

The deadline for applications is in early November. In December, approximately 20 finalists will be chosen and invited to come to central London in mid-January for a full day of formal and informal interviews with the selection committee. Up to 10 will be chosen as Scholars, with each award dependent on the candidate’s successful admission to Penn.



The Penn campus is located in Philadelphia, an early capital of the United States and site of the signing of the Declaration of Independence. Today it is the fifth-largest U.S. city, known for its distinctive neighborhoods, walkable downtown and innovative dining and entertainment scene.

Scholars get a personal guide to the best the region has to offer in a Welcome Book produced by Thouron alumni and updated every year to reflect new experiences.



Philadelphia is well located for exploring U.S. life beyond the campus. Trains leaving 30th Street Station, just a few blocks from Penn, go across the vast continent – but also put New York and Washington only a couple of hours away. Right next to 30th Street, student-oriented bus lines such as Bolt and Megabus have cheap, regular inter-city service.

The city is also an easy drive to the scenic Appalachian Mountains, inviting Atlantic beaches and quaintly rural Pennsylvania Dutch countryside.

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Penn Graduate Programs

Penn pioneered professional education in America and continues to set the pace today with outstanding graduate and professional programs. The integrated resources of 12 renowned graduate schools on one campus offer an unparalleled experience informed by intellectual rigor and a diverse community. The university’s world-class research establishment – annual R&D expenditures top $700 million – not only generates important new knowledge, but applies that knowledge to improving lives at home and around the world

Annenberg School for Communication

Annenberg produces research that advances the understanding of public and private communication, and helps policymakers create an intellectually and culturally rich media environment. The faculty comes from a wide range of backgrounds, including communication, psychology, sociology and law, and the school educates students in theories, substance and methods of communications research.

Penn Arts & Sciences

Home of the humanities, social sciences and natural sciences, the School of Arts and Sciences has 27 academic departments and a faculty of nearly 500 world-renowned scholars. The graduate division offers 10 masters and 33 doctoral programs. Disciplinary strength is at the heart of Penn’s excellence in research and graduate training; equally important, however is the spirit of interdisciplinary collaboration.

Penn Dental Medicine

Established in 1878, Penn Dental Medicine has set numerous precedents in education, research, and patient care. Academic programs include a DMD program with dual-degree options in education, bioethics, bioengineering, and public health and postdoctoral training in eight specialties with an option for a master’s in oral biology. Penn Dental Medicine encompasses basic and clinical sciences and provides community dental care.

Penn Design

The fields of architecture, planning, preservation, landscape and the fine arts come together at Penn Design. In a collaborative environment that fosters inquiry and experimentation, faculty and students seek to recast the distinction between theory and practice, expand knowledge and invention through research, and contribute works of value and beauty.

Penn Engineering

Penn Engineering’s world-acclaimed faculty, state-of-the-art research, laboratories and highly interdisciplinary curricula fulfill the vision of Penn founder Benjamin Franklin, who believed academia should combine classical learning with practical skills. With innovation and technology driving every program, Penn students play a critical role in posing and answering the questions that will enhance human life and transform the world.

Penn Graduate School of Education

Penn GSE emphasises the interplay of theory, research, and practice in education.  Long known for excellence in teacher education and leadership preparation, the school is recognised for its strengths in research on urban education, policy, teaching and learning, the cultural contexts of education, language education, qualitative analysis, practitioner inquiry, developmental psychology, and quantitative and multimethod inquiry.

Penn Law

To complement their rigorous legal training, Penn Law students have cross-disciplinary study opportunities unrivaled among leading law schools – such as classes and certification through Wharton or the Center for Bioethics. With more than half of the law school professors holding joint affiliations with other Penn schools, students are prepared for careers that engage virtually every major issue facing society.

Penn Nursing Science

One of the nation’s premier research institutions in nursing science, Penn Nursing also offers clinical experience in two of the country’s best hospitals. Resources and experiences include a state-of-the-art simulation lab featuring high-fidelity mannequins, student research opportunities across all levels of scholarship, and a PACE (Program of All-Inclusive Care for the Elderly) owned and operated by the school.

Penn Social Policy & Practice

The pursuit of social justice is at the heart of the School’s innovative educational and research programs. Students are actively engaged not only in their own courses but in real-world social agencies and larger social collectives; they graduate  prepared to address societal problems, both macro and micro, at the local, national and international level.


Penn Vet is the only veterinary school in the U.S. to have grown out of a medical school, and the shared history has led to exceptionally productive collaboration and research – pioneering the development of veterinary clinical investigation, comparative medicine and new fields ranging from stem cell research to animal/human interactions.

Perelman School of Medicine

One of the oldest and most respected medical schools in the United States, the Perelman School is rich in tradition while remaining at the forefront of new developments and innovations in medical education and research. Perelman consistently appears among the top five in U.S. News and World Report’s rankings of research-oriented medical schools.


Established in 1881, Wharton was the world’s first collegiate business school – and it is still one of the very best. While a Wharton degree alone has an outstanding reputation, students can combine the MBA with degrees from Penn’s graduate and professional schools, or explore additional programs with other schools, to create an unmatchable graduate experience.

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Study in the U.K.

Thouron scholars can study at any university in England, Scotland, Wales or Northern Ireland.



What would you like to learn, and where would you like to be? The possibilities are dizzying: Consider digital humanities at Birmingham, computational biology at Cambridge, curating the art museum at the Courtauld. Or meteorology at Reading, linguistics and machine learning at Edinburgh, engineering at Imperial College London. Or maybe war studies at King’s College London, social policy at the London School of Economics, global health at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, neuroscience at Oxford. And there’s urban sustainability at University College London, creative writing at the University of East Anglia, English literature at York.

Each location offers its own window on the U.K.’s iconic culture.



Applicants must be U.S. citizens, normally residing in the United States, who are affiliated with the University of Pennsylvania as graduating seniors, recent graduates, or current graduate or professional students.

The deadline for applications for the award is mid-October. In December, about 14 finalists will be invited to come to central Philadelphia the last Saturday of January for a full day of formal and informal interviews with the selection committee. Up to six candidates will be chosen as Scholars, with each award dependent on the candidate’s successful admission to a graduate programme in the U.K. Candidates are encouraged to apply to two prospective U.K. universities as admission is competitive.



Few countries pack so much into a small space as the United Kingdom. Frequent, affordable railroad service gives Scholars a lot of options for exploring, from the Scottish highlands to Snowdonia in Wales to the Sussex Downs. Ferries provide a link to Northern Ireland, and a nationwide network of footpaths encourages human-scale tourism in a way not possible in much of the world. And while Thouron Scholars are expected to use most of their vacation/holiday time immersing themselves in U.K. life and culture, cheap flights and the Chunnel make Britain a wonderful jumping-off point for visiting the rest of Europe.

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U.K. Universities

Thouron Scholars can study at any university in England, Scotland, Wales or Northern Ireland. Below is a list of the universities where Thourons have studied since 1960 – and new Penn applicants are always encouraged to expand the landscape.

Cardiff University

An ambitious and innovative university in the thriving capital city of Wales, Cardiff was recently ranked first among U.K. universities in civil engineering and construction research — and fifth in the country for overall quality of research. Other notable areas of study include Celtic studies, architecture, planning and landscape design.

Courtauld Institute

The Courtauld Institute, a college of the University of London, is a vibrant international centre renowned for its in-depth study of the history of art and conservation. It is also home to one of the finest small art museums in the world.

Durham University

Durham University draws on an unbroken tradition of scholarship that dates from the Venerable Bede in the 7th century. But it has always held forward-looking values: For example, in the 1870s, it pioneered the idea of overseas campuses, establishing two, in Barbados and Sierra Leone. Today its specialties include philosophy, information technology, English, archaeology, chemistry and music.

Imperial College London

Imperial is the only U.K. university to focus entirely on STEMB — science, technology, engineering, medicine and business. Its international reputation for excellence in teaching and research has led it to be consistently rated in the top 10 universities worldwide.

King’s College London

In 1860, Florence Nightingale founded the world’s first nursing school — the direct ancestor of the School of Nursing and Midwifery that bears her name today at King’s College. Based in the heart of London, King’s has a distinguished reputation not only in science and health areas, but in the humanities, law, and social sciences.

London School of Economics

LSE is widely recognized as the leading social science institution in the world, with many of the world’s foremost experts in their fields and cutting-edge research. Renowned for its work in economics and political science, it also offers curricula in law and a wide range of social science subjects, taught in 19 departments and a number of interdisciplinary institutes.

Queen’s University Belfast

Founded by Queen Victoria in 1845, Queen’s is a dynamic and diverse institution located in the bustling, cosmopolitan capital of Northern Ireland. It is an important part of the fabric of Northern Ireland as well as a global player in areas ranging from cancer studies to sustainability, and pharmaceuticals to creative writing.

SOAS, University of London

Specialising in the study of Asia, Africa and the Near and Middle East, SOAS is synonymous with intellectual enquiry and achievement. Its scholars grapple with pressing issues of democracy, development, human rights, religion and social change, while at the same time remaining guardians of knowledge of languages and periods and regions not available anywhere else in the U.K.

University College London

UCL – “London’s global university” – was founded in 1826 to offer university education to those who had been excluded from it. In 1878, it became the first English university to admit women on equal terms with men. It has the best academic-to-student ratio in the U.K. (1:10). Specialties include medicine, science, law, anthropology, linguistics and politics.

University of Bath

On a campus overlooking the Roman-built curative spas and Georgian architecture that have made Bath a tourist destination for centuries, the University of Bath focuses on strengths in science, technology, management, and social sciences to achieve research excellence and real-world impact. Its specialities include business, psychology, engineering, architecture, mathematics, physics and astronomy.

University of Birmingham

Birmingham was founded in 1900 as England’s first civic university, where students from all religions and backgrounds were accepted on an equal basis. Located in the U.K.’s most vibrant multicultural city, it boasts a diverse community in an inspirational campus setting, home to the Barber Institute of Fine Arts and the Cadbury Research Library.

University of Cambridge

In 2009, Cambridge marked its 800th anniversary, celebrating the world-changing ideas born within its walls — from the transformative thinking of great philosophers, scientists poets and artists to the groundbreaking work of its many Nobel Prize winners (more than any other university in the world). Among its most honored specialties are science, mathematics, law, economics, classical history and philosophy.

University of East Anglia

A young university with the motto of “do different,” UAE focuses on academic innovation and interdisciplinarity across departments. It is a leading member of Norwich Research Park, one of Europe’s biggest concentrations of researchers in the fields of environment, health and plant science; other specialities include business and creative writing.

University of Edinburgh

“Influencing the world since 1583,” Edinburgh specializes in architecture, linguistics, music, social policy, and veterinary medicine. It’s located in Scotland’s lively, diverse capital, a World Heritage Site that is regularly voted as one of the most desirable places to live in the world.

University of Exeter

Internationalism, both in outlook and impact, is central to Exeter’s mission; the university is recognized both for the quality of its global research and the distinctively international student experience. On its campuses in Exeter and Cornwall, Exeter offers opportunities in business, information technology, economics, classics and ancient history, architecture, history of art, and drama, dance and cinematics.

University of Glasgow

Fourth-oldest university in the U.K., alma mater of Adam Smith and Lord Kelvin, the University of Glasgow specializes in Celtic studies, art and design and veterinary medicine. Its historic campus is located in the heart of Glasgow, Scotland’s largest city.

University of Oxford

The oldest university in the English-speaking world, Oxford has been an international academic destination since Emo of Friesland became the first overseas student in 1190. Today it is invariably ranked in the top institutions of higher education in the world – a renowned centre of learning, teaching and research, particularly in the areas of humanities, law, business, and art and design.

University of St. Andrews

Six hundred years old, St. Andrews is an ancient yet modern institution, widely recognized in the fields of international relations, anthropology, theology, and art and architecture. Recent graduates include Prince William and his wife, the Duchess of Cambridge.

University of Surrey

Surrey is one of the U.K.’s leading professional, scientific and technological universities. With 126 partnerships and collaborations across the world, the University of Surrey’s approach to research is truly global. Besides specialties in physiology, engineering and psychology, it’s also the home of the Guildford School of Acting.

University of Warwick

One of England’s youngest universities, Warwick takes pride in innovation, diversity, interdisciplinary cooperation and industrial-academic links. Specialties include economics, international studies, mathematics, drama, and dance and cinematics.

University of York

Founded in 1963 on principles of excellence, equality and opportunity for all, York is a dynamic, research-oriented university committed to the development of life-saving discoveries and new technologies. It’s a new university in a historic area — located on the southern edge of a city founded two millennia ago by the Romans, and site of the centuries-old cathedral known as York Minster.

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