Nobel laureate and former U.S. secretary of energy Steven Chu is slated to return to his alma mater this spring.
The University of Rochester announced Chu is to deliver the commencement address at graduation May 19. At the ceremony, Chu is to receive the George Eastman Medal, which recognizes outstanding achievement and dedicated service.
Chu earned bachelor’s degrees in mathematics and physics from UR in 1970 and served on its board of trustees from 1999 to 2009.
He was appointed as energy secretary in 2008 by President Barack Obama. Chu stepped down this month to focus on an academic life of teaching and research. Chu is also the co-winner of the 1997 Nobel Prize for development of methods to cool and trap atoms with laser light.
As one of the nations leading scientists, Chu devoted his talent and knowledge to making contributions to global energy solutions, said Joel Seligman, UR president.
“His achievements are an inspiration to our students and his commencement address will be enormously meaningful to our graduates and their families,” Seligman said. “His association with the university is a point of pride for the entire community.”
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