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Stanford Earth dean urges graduates: Turn challenges into opportunities

sun setting in yellow sky
Andrey Grinkevich via Unsplash
Jun 12 2020
Awards, Fellow, Stanford, Students

Weathering the stresses of a pandemic that sent students to a foreign online learning environment followed by police brutality and systemic racism, 2020 graduates of the School of Earth Energy & Environmental Sciences (Stanford Earth) are a resilient bunch.

In a virtual recognition of their efforts and accomplishments, Dean Stephan Graham expressed optimism that the challenges the world has faced in recent months have opened the doors for new opportunities in research and innovation.

“A few years ago, some of our students bemoaned the seeming diminishment of science and society. Well, now science is front and center,” Graham said, referring to the vital role of scientific research in helping people emerge safely from the COVID-19 pandemic. “You are living in the midst of a revolution driven by new data collection technologies and computational power.”

In the 2019-20 academic year, Stanford Earth awarded 181 degrees: 33 Bachelor of Science, 91 Master of Science or Master of Arts, and 57 Doctor of Philosophy degrees, from the departments of Geological Sciences, Energy Resources Engineering, Geophysics and Earth System Science, and from three programs: the Emmett Interdisciplinary Program in Environment and Resources (E-IPER), the Earth Systems Program and the Change Leadership for Sustainability Program. 

In addition to the dean’s remarks and video slideshows from the departments and programs, the university organized a virtual celebration for 2020 graduates.

“Very few of us take linear paths in our careers,” Graham added.“We're living in disruptive times and our world is incredibly complex and rapidly changing. You'll have to be agile and adaptive and willing to learn new things.”

VPGE serves the entire graduate student community across all seven schools, including the School of Earth, Energy, and Environmental Sciences

Award winners for the Stanford Earth Certificate for Outstanding Achievement in Mentoring include:
Nina Brooks, a 2015 Stanford Graduate Fellow;
Cansu Culha, a 2019 Gerald J. Lieberman Fellow;
Rebecca MIller, a 2019 SIGF; 
Josheena Naggea, a 2017 EDGE-STEM Fellow; 
Sudatta Ray, a 2015 EDGE-STEM Fellow; and
Shannon Switzer, a 2016 David and Lucile Packard Foundation Stanford Graduate Fellow and 2020 Gerald J. Lieberman Fellow;

Award winners for the Centennial TA Awards include:
Colette Kelly, a 2017 EDGE Fellow, EDGE Mentor, and 2018-19 SPICE funding recipient; and
Shannon Switzer, a 2016 David and Lucile Packard Foundation Stanford Graduate Fellow and 2020 Gerald J. Lieberman Fellow;

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