Dartmouth Engineer - The Magazine of Thayer School of EngineeringDartmouth Engineer - The Magazine of Thayer School of Engineering

Investiture: Class of 2012

Thayer’s graduating class was honored at Investiture, held June 9 at the Hopkins Center. Dean Joseph J. Helble presided over the presentation of hoods, caps, and awards to 143 recipients of B.E. and graduate degrees.

Investiture speaker Robert Metcalfe led graduates in a cheer for engineers
LAST HURRAH: Investiture speaker Robert Metcalfe led graduates in a cheer for engineers. Photograph by Mark Washburn.

The annual Robert Fletcher Award, named for Thayer’s first dean and recognizing distinguished achievement and service in the highest tradition of the School, was presented to Dr. Robert Metcalfe, inventor of Ethernet and Professor of Innovation and Murchison Fellow of Free Enterprise in the Cockrell School of Engineering at the University of Texas at Austin.

“I’m an engineer, and proud of it,” Metcalfe told graduates. “We engineers make the world go round. By solving the world’s problems through technological innovation, we engineers energize the virtuous circle of freedom and prosperity. And so I say to you today, with great enthusiasm: Hurray for us!”

Metcalfe, author for many years of a weekly InfoWorld column, “From the Ether,” reviewed the National Academy of Engineering’s 14 Grand Challenges. “It’s going to be fun meeting these challenges over your next 50 years. It will also be fun adding to this list,” he said. Then he added one of his own: “NASA knows about thousands of asteroids large and close enough to threaten life on Earth. I’m more worried about the million asteroids NASA does not know about,” he said. “I think we should learn how better to detect and deflect asteroids, probably using space robots. Who wouldn’t want to work on that?”

In his address to graduates, Dean Helble reflected on comments students made about Thayer School at a recent end-of-year gathering. “In these comments, over and over again, from A.B., B.E., M.S., M.E.M., and Ph.D. students alike, the common denominator was the value they derived from being part of the Thayer community, part of a community of innovators,” he said. “I am encouraged and optimistic about our future in your hands,” Helble concluded. “I know that you will carry that spirit of innovation, that spirit of inquisitive problem solving, that sense of community, and that determination to use your education to push the boundaries of knowledge to make a difference in the world.”

See videos and photos from 2012 Investiture.

Class of 2012 Graduates

Categories: The Great Hall, Investiture

Tags: award, leadership, students

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