Albion College Assumes Management of The Philadelphia Center

A longtime partner with the Great Lakes Colleges Association, the Center is well recognized for its premier study-away, experiential-education opportunities for undergraduates nationwide

October 30, 2017

Philadelphia cityscape.Over the course of 50 years, The Philadelphia Center has provided thousands of college students with a compelling semester of off-campus study—highlighted by a significant and meaningful internship experience with a top-flight employer—in one of the country’s largest, most diverse and most historic cities.

Launched in 1967 by the Great Lakes Colleges Association, The Philadelphia Center (TPC) remains firmly rooted with the GLCA and its member colleges. This semester, a new chapter of that partnership has begun, as Albion College is now the official administrator of the program.

Located in the heart of Center City and less than a mile from Independence Hall, TPC offers fall- and spring-semester programs consisting of two courses (a city seminar taught by a full-time faculty member as well as an elective) and a 32-hour-per-week, for-credit internship. An eight-week summer session includes the city seminar and an internship of 32 to 40 hours per week.

The Philadelphia Center logo.In all, TPC has built relationships with more than 900 companies, nonprofit organizations and government entities throughout the greater Philadelphia area, and has offered experiential learning opportunities to more than 6,800 students from 90 colleges and 50 countries.

“This exciting partnership is an important development for Albion College,” said Mauri Ditzler, president of the College. “For many of our students who completed a semester through The Philadelphia Center, it remains a highlight of their Albion experience as alumni. Our deeper association with the Center—and our new, direct connection to Philadelphia and the Northeast Corridor—will result in more people in more places learning about and becoming familiar with Albion College.”

In recent years, Albion students participating in TPC have completed internships at executive placement firm Korn Ferry International, the Philadelphia City Controller’s Office, Penn Medicine’s Brain and Behavior Lab through the University of Pennsylvania, real estate investment firm Arden Group, and the historic Morris House Hotel.

“Off-campus study adds a special dimension to an undergraduate education that is unique for each student,” said Marc Roy, provost of Albion College. “Combining that with a real-world professional experience in a vibrant major city such as Philadelphia gives an undergraduate—from Albion and elsewhere—not only a memorable college semester, but a competitive edge when they receive their degree.

“Albion College is taking a confident step forward as it enters this relationship with The Philadelphia Center,” Roy added, “and we acknowledge and thank Hope College for its many years of leading an impactful academic program that has meant so much to so many.”

For one Albion alumna, her semester in Philly meant so much that she has stayed connected to the Center as a member of the TPC Friends Board. “The Philadelphia Center was a changing point in not only my academic life but also my professional and personal life,” said Ryan Arey, ’11, who completed a marketing and event planning internship at the Radisson Plaza Warwick and later returned to the city and received her master’s in higher education administration from the University of Pennsylvania. She is currently working in Washington, D.C., as the recruitment and marketing coordinator for the George Washington University Graduate School of Political Management.

“Growing up in a small town and attending Albion College, I never gave much thought to living in a big city,” said Arey, who graduated magna cum laude from Albion as a communication major and management minor. “However, after my experience with TPC and learning to navigate a big urban area, I knew that I wanted to return to a major city after Albion. Before TPC, I would have never broken out of my shell and taken such a leap of faith. I learned to be comfortable with being uncomfortable in new situations, and that is a life skill that has helped me advance my education and career.”

Tuition for the fall and spring semesters at The Philadelphia Center is equal to that of a semester at Albion College. Albion students’ financial-aid packages can be fully applied to TPC tuition. Students secure housing in Philadelphia with the assistance of TPC staff, which includes two full-time faculty and two on-site administrators.

The Philadelphia Center will have an Albion presence through the College’s Career and Internship Center, both on campus in Suite 103 of the Ferguson Building as well as downtown in the Ludington Center, located at 101 N. Superior St. and which opened at the start of 2017 to serve both community and College needs.

For more information, visit or contact the Career and Internship Center at 517/629-0332 or [email protected].