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Classic Penn Pranks for April Fools' Day

Original photo by Stuart Watson / CC Attribution-Share Alike 4.0. Edited by MJ Kang.

Happy April Fools’ Day! Maybe your last prank was putting a piece of chocolate on your friend’s chair and yelling “poopy-pants!” in the 3rd grade, or maybe you did that last week. Regardless, today is your chance to wreak some serious mischief on campus. Here are some simple, hilarious pranks that no Penn student could resist.

  1. Obtain a friend’s Penn log-in information and sign them up for the meal plan with the lowest amount of dining dollars.
  2. Get Zedd for Fling.
  3. Deactivate your Facebook and tell everyone how liberating it is. Reactivate your Facebook the day after and say “pranked” because you totally could have lived without it if you wanted to, but you don’t need that right now.
  4. Tell a freshman to sit with Ben on the Bench. Pee on him.
  5. Make up an elaborate start-up and tell your whole management class about it. Watch them squirm. You can also start a real start-up, but no one will care about that either.
  6. Tip off Penn Police that there might be some suspicious behavior happening at the Biopond.
  7. Go to Pottruck, drink 6 smoothies, and then leave.
  8. Make an SHS appointment weeks in advance, arrive and ask them to look at a weird rash on your chest, and then lift up your shirt to reveal "Here's how Bernie can still win" written across your abdomen. Pay for the appointment.
  9. Wait in line to get into Smokes, point to the bouncer and say “Can I see your ID?”, squeal-laugh, and walk away.
  10. Skip social events or class “to do work”, but then spend that time watching otter videos. Suffer both socially and academically as a result.
  11. Rush a fraternity and then drop out of the process thirty seconds before initiation.
  12. Steal your friend’s PennCard and don’t give it back until they post about it in the class Facebook group and pay $35 for a new one.
  13. Go through OCR and then become a poet. Ha-ha, joke's on you mom and dad!
  14. Say yes when a tourist asks you to take photos of them in front of the LOVE statue, but then use their phone to post memes about M&T on Facebook.
  15. Never clean up after yourself, just make your roommates do it. Once the year is over, tell them: "I'm not actually a terrible roommate, it was just a prank."
  16. Set off a Rodin sprinkler.
  17. Write your essay any time before the day it's due.
  18. Ruin all your meaningful relationships by backstabbing or ghosting everyone who cares about you, then yell “it was a prank” into the emptiness of your room.
  19. Do literally anything without bragging about it on every form of social media. Then, at exactly 11:59PM, write “PRANK” followed by an exhaustive list of all the exceptional things you did today.
  20. Replace all the water on campus with water that doesn’t taste and smell weird.
  21. Use a blue-light phone to request an escort home, then say “SIKE” when the Public Safety officer arrives to help you. Still ask him to walk you home, because you don’t want to be alone.

Please note: the following pranks are for Amy Gutmann only.

  • Tell students you’re divesting from fossil fuels, and then double fossil fuel investments the next day.
  • Make every day Meatless Mondays.
  • Lower the acceptance rate to 6.9%.
  • Go to formal with me.
  • Announce that you’re expanding CAPS, and then give students a bunch of huge baseball caps that are so big that they can’t even wear them. Like, really massive caps. Caps made for giants.