2010 Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute Commencement Speaker and Honorands Announced
Peter R. Orszag, Director of the Office of
Management and Budget in President Obama’s Administration, To
Deliver Commencement Address May 29
Robert S. Langer photo credit: Stu
Peter R. Orszag, one of the nation’s leading economists and
director of the White House Office of Management and Budget,
will deliver the Commencement address at the 2010 Rensselaer
Polytechnic Institute Commencement on Saturday, May 29. The
ceremony begins at 10:30 a.m. at the East Campus Athletic
Village on the Rensselaer campus. Orszag will receive an
honorary degree, along with fellow honorands Robert S. Langer,
Neil deGrasse Tyson, and Harold E. Varmus.
“We are pleased to have the opportunity to honor these four
distinguished leaders,” said Rensselaer President Shirley Ann
Jackson. “They will bring to our graduates and their families
at Commencement noteworthy accomplishments in the diverse and
critically important fields of economics and finance,
biotechnology, astrophysics, and physiology and medicine.”
President Jackson said Orszag, the Commencement speaker,
will deliver a timely and substantive message to the graduates
and their families.
“Leading the OMB is a crucial responsibility under any
circumstances, but Dr. Orszag plays an especially important
role during our current turbulent economic times,” she said.
“His work as Director of the OMB has a direct impact on the
present financial status of the nation, as well as on our
future prospects for financial recovery and a return to
economic prosperity. In addition to his public service work in
the government, he is a distinguished scholar in the study of
economics and finance.”
Peter R. Orszag — A former director of the
Congressional Budget Office, he also served as Joseph A.
Pechman Senior Fellow and deputy director of economic studies
at the Brookings Institution.
Robert S. Langer — A leader in
biotechnology, he currently serves as David H. Koch Institute
Professor at Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
Neil deGrasse Tyson — A renowned
astrophysicist, he currently serves as Frederick P. Rose
Director of the Hayden Planetarium at the American Museum of
Natural History in New York City.
Harold E. Varmus — Currently serves as
president of the Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center in New
York City, and received the Nobel Prize for Physiology and
Medicine in 1989.
Colloquy — Re-Igniting the Innovation Economy:
Science and Technology
On the eve of Commencement, Rensselaer will
convene the 2010 President’s Commencement Colloquy,
Re-Igniting the Innovation Economy: Science and
Technology. The four honorands will join President Jackson
to discuss the topic.
“Through their work, our honorands are shaping the national
agenda on scientific discovery and technological innovation,”
President Jackson said. “The question is, coming out of
the current recession, what are the essential components to
re-ignite the innovation economy? We are at a crossroads,
where decisions and investments we make today must lay the
foundation for our economic strength and global leadership.
During the colloquy, we will look back, to examine what sparked
the innovation revolution that has fueled our economy for
generations. We will look outward, at the current state of
collaboration among business, academia, and government
essential to support a healthy innovation ecosystem. And,
we will look forward, to see how, by removing barriers to
creating new approaches, we can power our economy and uplift
society as a whole.”
The colloquy will be held in the Concert Hall of the Curtis
R. Priem Experimental Media and Performing Arts Center, on the
Rensselaer campus, beginning at 4 p.m. on Friday, May 28.
For more details on Commencement, go to www.rpi.edu/academics/commencement/index.html.
Contact: Mark Marchand
Phone: (518) 276-6098