Netter Center for Community Partnerships

The Netter Center operates a variety of programs and initiatives that support its core mission of bringing to bear the broad range of human knowledge needed to solve the complex, comprehensive, and interconnected problems of the American city so that the local community of West Philadelphia, Philadelphia, the University itself, and society benefit. This includes both local programs in West Philadelphia, as well as regional, national, & international efforts to build partnerships between higher education, communities, and schools. ABCS courses, internships, and work-study and volunteer opportunities bring hundreds of Penn students into the schools and community to support these programs.

A major component of the Netter Center’s work is mobilizing the vast resources of the University to help transform traditional public schools into innovative University-Assisted Community Schools (UACS). University-Assisted Community Schools educate, engage, empower, and serve not only public students, but also all other members of the community in which the school is located. UACS focus on the school as the core institution for community engagement and democratic development and provide a strategy for bringing together Penn students, faculty, and staff with K-12 students, teachers, and community members for mutually-beneficial outcomes.

Philadelphia Youth Network (PYN)

PYN solves systemic problems in youth workforce participation and performance through professional development, data collection, research-based program design and streamlined operational support.

Analysis & Research

PYN collects data from over 125 youth-serving programs, conducts surveys with youth-serving organizations and young people, analyzes trends for investment and capacity decisions, and shares this data annually with the public.

Program Design Management

PYN creates service networks to prepare teens and young adults for successful futures. PYN recruits youth-serving organizations, allocates maximum spots for young people based on need and provider performance, and guides program plans to ensure a quality experience for each young person — regardless of their provider.

Professional Development and Training

Our unique approach to professional development and training directly benefits service providers through individualized coaching, ongoing monthly continuous improvement sessions, guest experts and use of our research-based tools and techniques. Our training is rooted in the Weikart Center’s Assess, Plan, Improve cycle, and allows providers to make a more accurate evaluation of their programming through the use of scientifically validated tools.