Drexel and Penn Medicine to Pilot New Program Uniting Major Employers and Cultural Institutions

Leaders from Penn Medicine, Drexel University, The Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts, Philadelphia Museum of Art, Philadelphia Orchestra at an event announcing the Philadelphia Cultural Pass Program
Leaders from Drexel, the University of Pennsylvania Health System, The Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts, Philadelphia Museum of Art and The Philadelphia Orchestra with a string quartet of musicians, at an event announcing the Philadelphia Cultural Pass program.

Drexel University and Penn Medicine will join to launch the Philadelphia Cultural Pass pilot grant program, an effort to support vital arts and cultural institutions in the city, offer valuable new opportunities for staff, and attract top talent to the region.

The Philadelphia Cultural Pass program will provide a fresh pathway to introduce employees and their families to internationally renowned arts institutions and the concerts, exhibits, and performances that have put Philadelphia on the map as a pre-eminent hub for the arts. The pilot program also aims to broaden the reach of these institutions to more people that work and live around Philadelphia, and to build a community of ambassadors who are active participants in the region’s cultural economy.

“We are a city born of firsts – a constant force for innovation in public service, education, health, and the sciences,” said Ralph W. Muller, CEO of the University of Pennsylvania Health System. “That same spirit is the foundation for the inspired works of music and art that make our city a world-class cultural destination, and we’re proud to launch a program that further connects all facets of our vibrant city.”

John Fry, Drexel president, said, “We are pleased to join Penn Medicine in spearheading the Cultural Pass program, which will give Drexel faculty and professional staff greater access to the music of the Philadelphia Orchestra, and the great treasures of the Museum of Art. Enhancing corporate support for the arts in Philadelphia this way is a win-win.”

Initial partners from the visual and performing arts community will include some of the City’s internationally acclaimed institutions: The Philadelphia Orchestra, Philadelphia Museum of Art and The Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts.

“This program so thoughtfully underscores the importance of increasing access to our region’s vibrant arts institutions. We hope that this invitation will be the spark that ignites a lifelong connection to music,” said Philadelphia Orchestra President and CEO Matías Tarnopolsky. “We are delighted to receive this generous support from Penn Medicine and Drexel University, which recognizes the role of the arts as a powerful unifier in our community.”

Philadelphia Cultural Pass grants will provide direct financial support to these cultural institutions. The program will also partner with the Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts, expanding access to a wide range of programs in theatre, music and dance.

“Providing greater access to the arts is a strategic focus of our work,” said Timothy Rub, The George D. Widener and Chief Executive Officer of the Philadelphia Museum of Art.  “We’ve found that this is best done in partnership with other institutions, especially those like Penn Medicine and Drexel University, which can help us engage new audiences.”

As two of the city’s largest employers, with a combined workforce of more than 46,000, pilot partners Penn Medicine and Drexel will work together to ensure that employees at all levels of their organizations — and their families — have access to these cultural offerings.

“This visionary leadership initiative will help strengthen the vital cultural fabric of the City of Philadelphia,” said Joseph Neubauer, former chair of the Philadelphia Orchestra, and current chair of the Barnes Foundation’s Board of Trustees. “We are grateful for this support which will introduce even more Philadelphians to these world-class institutions.”