Lehigh has announced the third honorary degree recipient for the university’s 144th commencement ceremony on Monday, May 21, which will recognize stellar achievement in academic leadership and human rights.
Larry Bacow, the former president of Tufts University, is internationally recognized as an advocate for increasing access to higher education and as an expert in the non-adjudicatory resolution of environmental disputes. He will receive an honorary Doctor of Pedagogy at the commencement ceremony, which will be held on Goodman Campus.
The author of four books and numerous articles, Bacow has consulted extensively throughout the world and serves on the board of advisers for the White House Initiative on Historically Black Colleges and Universities.
Before his 10-year term as president of Tufts, Bacow was chancellor of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Lee and Geraldine Martin Professor of Environmental Studies. At MIT, he taught courses in urban studies and planning, in economics and political science, and in the Sloan School of Management. He also chaired the MIT faculty and held visiting professorships and research appointments at five universities abroad.
He is a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences as well as a trustee of Wheaton College, a member of the board of overseers of Hebrew College and a frequent speaker on higher education and environmental issues.
In 2010, the Harvard Graduate School of Education announced that Bacow would serve a one-year term as president-in-residence for its Higher Education master’s program, which allows students to learn from former university presidents.
In 2011, Bacow was named a member of the Harvard Corporation, the board charged with guiding the endeavors and initiatives of Harvard University.
He received the S.B. in economics from MIT, the J.D. from Harvard Law School, and the M.P.P. and Ph.D. from Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government.
The two other honorary degree recipients are His Excellency Ali bin Ibrahim Al-Naimi, Saudi Arabia’s Minister of Petroleum and Mineral Resources, and Jody Williams, the 1997 Nobel Peace Prize winner.
Al-Naimi, who is also chair of the board of trustees of Saudi Arabia’s King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST), will deliver the commencement address and receive an Honorary Doctor of Science. He earned a B.S. from Lehigh in 1962.
Williams, an American educator and peace activist who is renowned for her efforts to ban landmines, will deliver the baccalaureate address to graduates and their families on Sunday, May 20, in Packer Memorial Church. She will receive an Honorary Doctor of Humane Letters.