Penn Museum Building campaign


By offering artifacts, experiences, and insights that illuminate our past, the Penn Museum will ensure that every student—from grade school to graduate school—and every visitor will leave with heightened understanding of what they share with people in the past, and around the globe.

The Penn Museum is committed to using its collections to impact student learning and enhance teaching throughout the city of Philadelphia. We offer a free, multi-step program, Unpacking the Past, to every 7th-grade class in the Philadelphia School District, including teacher training, a school-based lesson taught by a Museum educator, a Museum-based session for every class led by the same educator, and free family memberships for every participating teacher and student. Unpacking the Past invites children across Philadelphia to see the Penn Museum as their community museum, and to return with their families to unlock the wonders of the past and explore new worlds again and again.

The transformation of the Museum’s Kamin Main Entrance—including two new elevators and new pathways—will let in the light and make our galleries and spaces accessible for all. Meanwhile, expanded access programs will welcome more visitors with special needs: designed for visitors with developmental and intellectual disabilities and their families, Family Access Programs will use role play, storytelling, movement, and touch to bring the lives of the ancients to life. A new Global Guides program will hire and train area immigrants and refugees to be tour guides for the Museum’s collections, speaking from their ‘lived’ perspectives to combine first-person narratives with facts to make ancient material more present and more relevant to general visitors, while also expanding inclusion of diverse communities.

Reimagined and renovated galleries will share extraordinary collections, and their collection history, from across the continent of Africa, and from Mexico and Central America. Accompanying programs will showcase living artists and artisans and provide a public forum for the discussion of pressing historical and contemporary issues.

Ready to make transformation possible?