University of Rochester

Currents--University of Rochester newspaper

Honorary degrees to be awarded to Jackson, Golisano, Solow
A leader in higher education, a successful entrepreneur, and a Nobel Prize-winning economist will receive honorary degrees at the University’s 157th commencement ceremonies on Sunday, May 20.
Shirley Ann Jackson, who will give the Commencement address and receive an honorary doctor of science degree, is the president of Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. A theoretical physicist, Jackson earned her undergraduate and doctoral degrees from Massachusetts Institute of Technology, worked at Fermilab, conducted research at AT&T Bell Laboratories in New Jersey, and joined the faculty of Rutgers University in 1991. In 1995, President Bill Clinton appointed Jackson chair of the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission. She became the 19th president of Rensselaer in 1999.  
Paychex chairman and founder Tom Golisano has been consistently recognized for his entrepreneurial and civic accomplishments and philanthropic works. He started Paychex in 1971 at the age of 30. The company has grown to nearly 11,500 employees and more than half a million customers. Forbes named the Irondequoit native one of the top 10 business leaders in the United States for three consecutive years beginning in 2002 and placed Paychex on its “Best Managed Companies in America” list in 2004. Golisano, who will receive an honorary doctor of laws degree, has made numerous multimillion dollar gifts in support of schools, health care and human service organizations, and medical institutions.
Economist Robert Solow, who will be awarded an honorary doctor of laws degree, is particularly known for his analysis and work on the theory of economic growth. In the 1950s, he developed a mathematical model illustrating how various factors contribute to economic growth, observing that about half of economic growth cannot be accounted for by increases in capital and labor. He attributed this unaccounted-for-portion—now called the “Solow residual”—to technological innovation. Solow received the Nobel Prize in 1987 and the National Medal of Science in 1999. He has spent his entire career at Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where he is currently Institute Professor Emeritus and Professor of Economics Emeritus. He also currently serves on the advisory board for the Center for Economic and Policy Research.
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