Tandon Calls on Class of 2017 to Continue Long Tradition of Creating Tech that Benefits All


Robert B. Millard — the chair of the MIT Corporation and co-founder  of Fortune 200 firm L-3 Communications Holdings — will deliver the commencement address at the NYU Tandon School of Engineering’s 2017 graduation ceremony on May 16 at the Barclays Center in Downtown Brooklyn.

Millard has been widely praised in both the business world and academia for his humility, critical thinking skills, problem-solving ability, strategic focus, and determination. Devoted to mentorship and adept at the art of posing insightful questions, he is expected to give the Tandon Class of 2017 the benefit of his decades of experience in multiple realms.

The school will confer 496 bachelor’s degrees, 1357 master’s degrees, and 51 doctorates this academic year.

With Tandon faculty actively engaged in creating technology that makes the world a better place, each of our new grads has absorbed that social mission. Our alumni go on to touch the world in innumerable ways — both big and small, directly related to tech or not — and we expect the Class of 2017 to do the same. They will be following in the footsteps of such admirable figures as:

  • Eugene DeLoatch (‘66, ’72), the Founding Dean of the Clarence M. Mitchell Jr. School of Engineering at Maryland’s Morgan State University and the 2017 Black Engineer of the Year, who is widely credited with educating more African-American engineers than any other single person in the nation.
  • The late Eugene Lang, who once studied mechanical engineering here and was known for personally funding the higher education of dozens of schoolchildren, launching a foundation that called upon others to do the same, and directly changing the lives of more than 16,000 aspiring college-goers across the country.
  • Ruthie Lyle-Cannon (’98), the first black woman ever to earn a doctoral degree from the school, who now regularly teaches young people about the benefits of STEM education through groups like Black Girls Code.
  • Daniella Patrick (’13), who helped engineer a new kind of helmet projected to save scores of competitive wrestlers from serious injury.
  • Suman Sabastin (‘08), who worked with Girl Scouts USA National Headquarters to create the organization’s first-ever "Robotics" patch, which aims to engage girls in STEM career fields.
  • Geotechnical engineer Sean Walsh (’07), who worked as the head of an Engineers without Borders team that brought clean water to a rural Kenyan health center that had previously relied on contaminated water from a rudimentary hand-dug well and nearby streams for cleaning medical instruments and treating patients.  
  • Calvin Allen Young III (’10), who entered the challenging world of Baltimore politics, declaring that government and mechanical engineering are both “about making things move in ways they would not without our intelligent intervention.”

Visit Commencement 2017 for more information on the ceremony.