When legendary jazz pianist and composer Herbie Hancock took the podium at the 212th Commencement at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute on Saturday, he told a story from his own years as a young graduate, at a time when he was playing piano with the Miles Davis Quintet. In the midst of a “magical” performance in Stockholm, Sweden, as Davis was building his solo, Hancock played a chord “that was so wrong, it was like lighting a match to the gorgeous house of sound we had been building.”
The Reserve Officers’ Training Corps (ROTC) programs at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute are elective programs for students who desire commissions in the United States Armed Forces. This year, 34 students will graduate from the ROTC program and start active military service as officers with the Army, Navy, Marine Corps, and Air Force.
On Saturday, May 19, 1,945 students will receive degrees from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, the oldest technological research university in the United States, beginning at 8:15 a.m. in the East Campus Athletic Village (ECAV) stadium on campus. They represent the next generation of leaders, engineers, scientists, entrepreneurs, patent holders, game designers, architects, and innovators, in fields ranging from engineering to architecture, fine arts to science, game design to information technology, and business to active military service.
The support of family is an integral part of any college student’s experience. In the case of Amber and Alwaleed (Al) Zia’s parents, that support meant moving the whole family from Darien, Connecticut, to Lee, Massachusetts, so that their daughter and son could commute together to and from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute daily. And together they will graduate on May 19.
Along with the challenges of pursuing a dual degree at a technological university, Alejandra Jaime-Rodriguez joined the university’s equestrian team, and with passion and perseverance, but no prior experience, qualified for a regional competition of the Intercollegiate Horse Show Association.
Unfortunately, just prior to the competition, she was thrown from a horse, and was too sore to compete. She did, however, return to riding as soon as she was able.
“You don’t learn how to fall; you learn from the fall—learn from it and get back on the horse,” she says.
The day Laura Antoniello attended a campus job fair at Rensselaer Polytechnic Instititue changed everything. She was an electronic media, arts, and communication (EMAC) major and the fair was geared for engineering jobs. But Hasbro was at the event and Antoniello was really interested in working at the company, having grown up near its headquarters. The Hasbro recruiter gave her valuable pointers.
In high school, Joseph Vengen faced adversity and suffering every day. Born completely deaf, he received his first cochlear implant as a toddler. The technology opened doors but has limitations in noisy environments. Too often, Vengen was left feeling isolated and frustrated.
Powerful hurricanes and earthquakes have wreaked havoc in the United States and around the world in recent years, often leaving people stranded for months and even years without access to water, food, and shelter. A unique collaborative project at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute seeks to provide a sustainable solution, while also considering the environment.
Heat pipes are devices to keep critical equipment from overheating. They transfer heat from one point to another through an evaporation-condensation process and are used in everything from cell phones and laptops to air conditioners and spacecraft.
Aquaporins are proteins that serve as water channels to regulate the flow of water across biological cell membranes. They also remove excess salt and impurities in the body, and it is this aspect that has led to much interest in recent years in how to mimic the biochemical processes of aquaporins potentially for water desalination systems.