Gregory Callaghan


School of Arts and Sciences



Gregory Callaghan is the 2019-2020 President of GAPSA. He comes to the role after several years of participating in student government at the school and university level. Starting in 2015-16, he served as the Ancient History representative to the SASgov General Body. In 2016-17, he served as SASgov's VP of Financial Operations, as well as joining GAPSA as a General Assembly representative for SAS. In 2017-2018, he served as President of SASgov, as a General Assembly representative for GAPSA, and as the Finance Deputy for GAPSA and the G12's GAP program. Finally, last year, Greg served as the Chair of GAPSA’s Research Student Council.

For the coming year, Greg is excited to support a great many initiatives from the Executive Board and the General Assembly, with a strong interest in more fully embedding graduate and professional students in all aspects of the University, and making sure their unique needs are part of the conversation. As President, he believes his purpose is to be there to support the desires and goals of the entire GAPSA team. To that end, he will focus this year on developing and passing a series of structural reforms to improve how GAPSA operates, better positioning the organization to meet the growing and varied demands of its constituency.

Outside of student government, Greg is a 6th year Ancient History PhD candidate. He came to Penn after completing his BA in Latin at the College of William & Mary. His dissertation, tentatively titled "Attalid Networks: Seeking Status and Acquiring Authority beyond State Capacity," combines Network Analysis with modern IR concepts and applies them to the Attalid dynasty of the Hellenistic period. Greg's work draws from as many different sources as possible (archaeological, epigraphic, literary, numismatic, etc), and he is proud of his interdisciplinary approach to the ancient world. Greg's research is generously supported by the Penn Museum's Louis J. Kolb Society, to which he was inducted as a Junior Fellow in April 2017. He also pleased to join the Wolf Humanities Center this year as a graduate fellow.

As a means of combining the two above sides of his life at Penn, Greg notes how often conversations sparked by or at GAPSA events have helped shape and improve his research. For instance, a discussion of the principles of organizational dynamics that underpinned the GAPSA Renewal Project inspired a new analytical angle for Greg's study of Seleucid versus Attalid interactions with local communities and has become a valuable argumentative thread in his dissertation. There are so many graduate students working on so many amazing projects at Penn, and it is far too easy to silo yourself off and only hear what your most immediate colleagues are doing. GAPSA provides a fantastic opportunity to break through some of those walls and to access a much broader intellectual community. Greg encourages everyone to take advantage of that opportunity, as you never know what a conversation with someone from an entirely different field may inspire.  

If you have ideas or suggestions you would like to share about GAPSA, please do not hesitate to contact Gregory at