New Tangen Hall, Product of a $25 Million Gift to Wharton, Will Be Hub for Entrepreneurship and Innovation

Engineering programs and facilities with an entrepreneurship focus, include Weiss Tech House and the Integrated Product Design Master’s Program, will be housed there.

The University of Pennsylvania announced a $25 million gift that will spearhead construction of a transformative new campus building to be named Tangen Hall, and establish an international scholarship fund. Nicolai Tangen, founder of London-based investment partnership AKO Capital, is a 1992 Wharton undergraduate alumnus, and the donation was made by the AKO Foundation to Penn on the recommendation of Mr. Tangen and his wife, Katja. The gift is a significant contribution to Wharton’s More Than Ever fundraising campaign.

“We are profoundly grateful to Nicolai and Katja Tangen for their extraordinary commitment to extend opportunities for entrepreneurship to all Penn students,” said Penn President Amy Gutmann. “Talented and creative students are working hard to identify challenges where they can implement efficient, sustainable, and actionable solutions through innovative ventures. Their efforts will start in Tangen Hall and have impact across the country and around the world. We are also grateful that Nicolai and Katja are expanding their steadfast scholarship support, enabling the best students from every part of the world to attend Penn, to thrive in their studies, and to serve communities worldwide.”

Tangen Hall, which will be nearly 70,000 square feet and located at 40th and Sansom Streets, represents the first-ever dedicated space for cross-campus student entrepreneurship at Penn. As such, it will crystalize and centralize entrepreneurship and innovation scholarship and practice for students.

Penn Wharton Entrepreneurship and other student entrepreneurship programs across the University will come together within Venture Lab at Tangen Hall. The building will become the new home for such longstanding campus entrepreneurship-focused programs as Penn Wharton Entrepreneurship; the Goergen Entrepreneurial Management Program; Weiss Tech House; the Sol C. Snider Entrepreneurial Research Center; the Wharton Small Business Development Center; and the master’s level Integrated Product Design Program.

Plans for the building include:

  • Dozens of meeting and collaboration spaces for students
  • Storefront retail space for student ventures
  • A test kitchen for food-centric startups
  • A Maker Lab operated by Penn’s School of Engineering and Applied Science and featuring 3D printers and laser cutters
  • A virtual reality environment or VR cave
  • A café for re-energizing and socializing

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