Last Updated: 07/31/2012*

On May 11, 2012, Robert C. Holub, chancellor of the University of Massachusetts Amherst campus, conferred upon Mark E. Russell, Raytheon vice president of Engineering, Technology and Mission Assurance, the Degree of Doctor of Engineering, honoris causa. “You have won international recognition for your groundbreaking technological contributions to radar components and systems,” said Holub. “You are a sterling role model for students aspiring to work in technological fields, a visionary proponent of collaboration between industry and higher education, and a deeply engaged and loyal alumnus of this university.”

In his commencement speech to the graduates, Russell advised that hard work, persistence and attention to detail result in solid domain knowledge. He urged graduates to continue to feed their natural curiosity and embrace a commitment to life-long learning. “The application of these principles, combined with the experience gained by solving problems, will lead to the development of good judgment,” he said. “While in school you are measured by academic knowledge gained; in life, you are also measured on the quality of your judgment.”

Later that day, Russell spoke at the Commencement Celebration Dinner. He was introduced by Theodore Djaferis, dean of the College of Engineering at UMass Amherst, who praised Russell for playing “a fundamental role in architecting and supporting innovation partnerships between university, industry and the government as evidenced by the establishment of a National Science Foundation Engineering Research Center on campus in 2003.” A key component of this partnership was the creation of system-level research and educational programs that advance the missions of both UMass Amherst and Raytheon. The Center on Collaborative Adaptive Sensing of the Atmosphere (CASA) is in its ninth year of successful operation, and it has been frequently referred to as a “national model” for university-industry collaboration.

A native of New York State, Russell earned his bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering from the University of Massachusetts Lowell. Subsequently, while working at Raytheon, he earned his master’s degree in electrical and computer engineering from the University of Massachusetts Amherst under the Raytheon Advanced Study scholarship program.


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