International Program: Cultures Collective

“It seems to me, Govinda, that love is the most important thing in the world. It may be important to great thinkers to examine the world, to explain and despise it. But I think it is only important to love the world, not to desire it, not for us to hate each other, but to be able to regard the world and ourselves and all beings with love, admiration and respect.”

-- Herman Hesse’s Siddhartha

How do we regard the world with all its complexities and nuances, as well as the multitude of cultures found throughout the globe? The International Program Community (IP) – – creates a dynamic space where residents can learn about other cultures and ways of living. Resident Advisors and Graduate Associates (RAGAs) and residents alike facilitate cooperative learning through dinner and discussions, participation in the annual Coffeehouse & Food Festival, and creation of cultural displays that are shown on the floors. Residents have also attended museum exhibition tours and special events in the Philadelphia area. As part of the Harnwell Cultures Collective, residents will showcase the integrated experience and interconnectedness of cultural commonality in scholarly and creative presentations at the annual Harnwell Symposium.

IP events and activities are shaped by residents’ interests each year and encompass exploration of international cultures, policies, cuisine, theater, music, etc. This program is well-suited for the student who takes initiative, is dedicated to the mission of the Cultures Collective, and is seeking intellectual and personal growth.

Program Goals: The Program invites residents to expand their understanding of other cultures and foster an appreciation for living in an intercultural community. At the conclusion of the academic year, residents will have developed their critical thinking skills, taken on leadership roles, and engaged with these topics through an interdisciplinary model.

Participant Expectations: The Program RAGAs will review details and activities at the beginning of the academic year, where residents will receive their IP Compact. Residents will be expected to participate in the following, as decided by the RAGAs:

  • 1 major event per month
  • 1 minor event per month
  • Implement 1 minor floor event as determined by the RAGAs
  • Host 1 House program per semester


To apply:

If you are applying to a Program Community, determine if you would like to request a roommate, but keep in mind that your roommate must also be accepted to the Program Community.


Students of any gender can be roommates if they all elect to be in Gender Neutral Housing.


Log on to MyHomeAtPenn between January 24, 9:00 a.m., and January 28, 1:00 p.m., to submit your application.

For more detailed information on the Program Community application and process please visit this page on the Residential Services website or plan to attend our Information Session on Tuesday, January 16 at 9:00 PM in McClelland South Lounge. Please note that all applicants are required to respond to the following questions in an essay using a maximum of 500 words:

        Why are you interested in joining this Program Community?

        What would your involvement bring to this program’s overall experience?

        How have you participated in your current House community?

Applications will be reviewed by Harnwell Senior Staff and RAGAs affiliated with the Harnwell Cultures Collective. Interested students can apply to multiple tracks in the Collective, so it is highly encouraged that the essays reflect the uniqueness of each program in order to be seriously considered. If needed, Harnwell Senior Staff and RAGAs reserve the right to reach out to applicants clarifying room requests and additional concerns.

Contact:, please include "International Program" in the subject header.