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U.S. Energy Secretary Chu Delivers Commencement Speech at NYU-Poly


Recounting memories of being the son of a noted faculty member of what is now Polytechnic Institute of New York University (NYU-Poly), U.S. Secretary of Energy and Nobel Laureate Steven Chu Monday morning offered inspirational lessons from the school’s history during his commencement speech.
As keynote speaker at NYU-Poly’s 156th commencement ceremony, Chu particularly recalled how his father, Professor Ju Chin Chu, was mentored by Donald Othmer, world renowned chemist and head of Poly’s Chemical Engineering Department.

Like his friend Warren Buffett, Othmer held to core values of integrity, intellectual curiosity and generosity throughout his life, Steven Chu said. Chu encouraged graduates to continuously develop their own internal compasses.

NYU-Poly President Jerry MacArthur Hultin and the trustees of NYU-Poly awarded Chu a doctorate of engineering honoris causa. A former faculty member of the University of California and Stanford University, Steven Chu holds a doctorate in physics from Oxford, earned 10 patents and conducted research in fields as diverse as atomic physics, quantum electronics, polymers and biophysics. Before joining President Obama’s cabinet, the co-winner of the Nobel Prize for Physics in 1997 served as Director of the Department of Energy’s Lawrence Berkeley National Lab.

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