Life in Philadelphia

Living in Philadelphia

Whether you’re here for the summer or a full semester, our alumni tell us the independent urban living experience is one of their favorite aspects of studying at The Philadelphia Center. Philadelphia is the 6th largest city in the United States, home to numerous colleges and universities, with vibrant arts, sports, and historical opportunities. As part of studying at TPC, students are expected and supported in getting to know the city and learn how to get to know and live in an urban environment. The city is really an extension of the class room at The Philadelphia Center and learning happens everywhere!


One of the most rewarding components of our 16-week semester program is independent city living. The Philadelphia Center’s housing process is an opportunity to develop your self-reliance and confidence as you find, choose, and live in housing with other students in the program. The faculty and staff at TPC support you throughout the housing selection process, but expect you to take charge of your search and make the most of this invaluable learning opportunity during your first week in Philadelphia.

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Thanks to William Penn’s grid system, navigating Philadelphia is simple. The Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority (SEPTA) encompasses a vast network of buses, subways, trolley and regional rail lines that will get you where you need to go. Affordable weekly and monthly passes make SEPTA a convenient transportation option for students.

Students are responsible for their own transportation to and from Philadelphia. 

City Life

The Philadelphia Center’s offices are located in the heart of Center City, just a short walk from theaters, boutiques, galleries, historical monuments and more. Students often use the center as a “home base,” like a student center on campus, while together experiencing independent living and learning in the city.

While you’re living in Philadelphia, be sure to catch a bus to New York, Boston, Washington D.C., or Atlantic City — all just a few hours from your new home.

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