The interim dean of the School of Engineering and Applied Science honored the school’s graduating doctoral students at a hooding ceremony in Lisner Auditorium Thursday.
Interim Dean Rumana Riffat told graduates to recognize the “milestone” they have reached – one that only 3 percent of the population has gained – and urged them to feel distinguished for their accomplishments in the doctoral program. She challenged graduates to continue to learn throughout their careers.
“Each one of you here has spent countless hours and dedicated enormous intellectual energy,” she said.
Riffat said the graduates had transitioned “from student to colleague” in the process of refining their doctoral research, mentoring students and completing their dissertations. She challenged the graduates to continue their “academic journeys” even though their time at GW had concluded.
“I also urge you to broaden your academic horizons,” Riffat said. “I charge you to bring your intellect and curiosity to bear on the larger world of knowledge.”
She added that graduates should treat ethics and integrity with the “utmost importance” in their professional lives. Students should develop their own personal codes of ethics, Riffat said.
She told graduates they should volunteer their time and experience toward public service at every opportunity they are granted.
“Life is multifaceted,” Riffat said. “It’s all the people and experiences that have been meaningful to us in the past. In this way, you can build a life that is integrated rather than a series of unconnected incidents.”
Cam Korman, the associate dean for research and graduate studies, said the graduating students have made their own “original contributions to knowledge or practice” and should continue to contribute to the wider body of scientific research.
He said the graduating doctoral students are also prepared to teach others how to follow the path they have taken in their studies.
“This distinction will continue to motivate you as you advance into your chosen profession,” he said.
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