FGLI Program Services

The FGLI Program welcomes any undergraduate, graduate, or professional student who can benefit from highly-personal support, advising, and referrals. FGLI Program staff work with faculty and administrative partners across campus to ensure that first-generation and/or low-income scholars can thrive and succeed at Penn. Services include:

FGLI Textbook Library

The FGLI Program maintains a textbook lending library of more than 1,700 donated books. This is a free resource. FGLI students can check out textbooks on the third floor of the Greenfield Intercultural Center. Requests are handled on a first-come, first-served basis. Please review the catalogue for holdings and availability. Books not in the library can be requested.

Search the FGLI Library Catalogue for the book you need.

To request a book not in our catalogue, please use this form: FGLI Textbook Purchasing Request Form

Kindly limit these requests to higher-priced books you cannot afford to purchase. The FGLI Program strives to manage resources to benefit as many FGLI students as possible. All requests will be reviewed, but not all requests can be honored. Staff are available to speak with any student about a specific situation or need.

Library Assistance

Penn Libraries has trained students to work as Library Resource Liaisons catering to the FGLI Program. The Library Resource Liaisons provide an introduction to library research, such as how to navigate the website, identify journal articles, understanding databases, and finding books. The Library Resource Liaisons also help FGLI students utilize diverse library services and connect with specialists who can help with term papers and projects.

Interested students should contact the Library Resource Liaisons: libraryresourceliaison@pobox.upenn.edu

Library Resource Liaisons are situated in the following locations:

Greenfield Intercultural Center (GIC), 3708 Chestnut
Monday 10am-12pm; Wednesday 10am-12pm and 6pm-9pm; Friday 10am-12pm and 3pm-5pm

The ARCH, 3601 Locust Walk
Monday 6pm-9pm; Tuesday 6pm-8pm; Thursday 6pm-9pm

Assistance for Students Remaining on Campus during University Breaks

Many students are not able to return home during the holidays and other University breaks for various reasons. Help is available during those times from Student Financial Services (SFS), Penn Dining, and from the GIC. Eligible students can potentially receive holiday meals in the College Houses or GIC, added dining swipes, and/or cash advances from SFS to ensure they have food if facilities are closed or open on limited schedules. The GIC also offers community dinners and outings for any students seeking a home-cooked meal and experiences during breaks.

Community Kitchen and Food Pantry

The GIC maintains a food pantry students can utilize free of charge for use in meal planning and eating on the go. The items are available in the kitchen on the first floor, which is also open for students to use at any point during our hours of operation.

Donations of non-perishable food are accepted year-round. Desired items include canned soups, pasta, rice, cereal, nuts, snacks, spices, and sauces.

Summer Storage

In partnership with the PennKIPP program, students can sign up for communal summer storage at a reduced cost. At the end of the academic year, we rent pods/storage containers for students to store their belongings together. The fee depends on the number of students that sign up and varies year to year. Notification of this initiative is sent out through the GIC and other respective list-serves.

Commencement Regalia

Penn requires students to purchase and wear graduation regalia to participate in Commencement. This regalia is sold at the Penn Bookstore for less than $100. Student Financial Services can assist FGLI students with a financial hardship. Please speak to FGLI Program staff, who work in partnership with colleagues in SFS on this and other forms of assistance.


For more information about these and other services, please contact Valerie DeCruz at the FGLI Program, decruz@upenn.edu, (215) 898-3358.