When Andrew Summerfield walked onto the stage to receive his doctorate, Luca Caracoglia handed him a smartphone.
The associate professor of civil and environmental engineering was a stand-in for Summerfield’s advisor Andrew Myers, also an associate professor of civil and environmental engineering at Northeastern and associate chair for graduate studies, who had come down with COVID-19 a few days before Northeastern’s Doctor of Philosophy Hooding and Graduation Ceremony. But Caracoglia and Myers coordinated to surprise Summerfield with a video call.
When Summerfield realized his advisor had made it to the ceremony after all, albeit remotely, a wide smile spread across his face and he waved the phone’s screen at his fellow graduates and guests to let them in on the delight.
The hooding ceremony, which was held in Matthews Arena on Monday, represents the culmination of several years of study for the Class of 2022 in fields ranging from cybersecurity to mechanical engineering to psychology to chemistry, and many more.
David Madigan, provost and senior vice president for academic affairs at Northeastern, opened the celebration by congratulating the graduates on the “impact you have already made as scholars and as scientists.” He told them, “You have raised the bar of excellence very high indeed. The world needs your deep expertise and your unique capacity to create knowledge that solves problems.”
At the conclusion of the ceremony, Madigan reiterated this sentiment by charging the newly minted PhDs with finding “new ways to extend your impact.” He said, “The world needs your minds, your hearts, and, above all else, your humanity.”
Read more on [email protected]
Photo by Alyssa Stone/Northeastern University.