K-12 Students and Individuals

The SOI occasionally has opportunities for K-12 Philadelphia students to be involved in Penn research projects and outreach activities.

Laboratory Experiences in the Natural Sciences (Penn LENS) - Summer lab experiences, with financial awards, for Philadelphia high school students.  

The program will run June 21-August 5, 2021.

 The application is open and can be accessed here


2018 Penn LENS Students in front of the Franklin Institute 

Students in the Penn LENS program will have the opportunity to gain firsthand experience working in a university science laboratory and/or field setting. Under the direction of Penn faculty and their graduate students/post docs/staff, they will carry out daily assigned tasks which are essential to the ongoing research efforts. They will gain important skills that involveboth laboratory procedures and computer-based data collection and analysis. 

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Dr. Alison Sweeney’s Lab

Dr. Sweeney is a physics professor, but her research connects physics and biology. She is interested in the material properties of biological systems and how they generatenewand interesting optical phenomenon. Many of the organisms she studies (such as clams, squid and jelly fish) live in the ocean, but her graduate students are also looking at similar phenomenon in butterflies and other living things.


Dr. Joseph Kable’s Lab
Dr. Kable is a psychology professor who looks at how and why people make decisions, using approaches from psychology, neuroscience andeconomics.


Dr. Eleni Katifori’s Lab
Dr. Katifori is a physics professor who studies the organizing principles of biological material and how they evolved, focusing on vascular systems such as the ones found in plant leaves. 

Image preview2017 Penn LENS Alumnae




Additional Philadelphia-area outreach opportunities: