Last Updated: 06/04/2013*

Raytheon Chairman and CEO William H. Swanson recently received the Distinguished Service Award from Bunker Hill Community College. Swanson also delivered the annual commencement address to the graduating class of 2013. 

BHCC President Mary L. Fifield presented the award to Swanson during its 39th Commencement exercises on June 1 in Boston. The award recognizes extraordinary commitment and service to the College.

Fifield highlighted Swanson’s leadership in establishing the “Learn and Earn” program at BHCC. Through this program, established in partnership with the CEOs of the Massachusetts Competitive Partnership, community college students obtain hands-on experience and placement at some of the state’s largest employers. Fifield regarded the program as a model of successful partnering between education and industry.

Swanson Honored with President’s Distinguished Service Award - image

Raytheon Chairman and CEO William H. Swanson received the Bunker Hill Community College President’s Distinguished Service Award June 1 from BHCC President Mary L. Fifield during the College's 39th Commencement exercises in Boston.

In his commencement address, Swanson highlighted the program and its role in strengthening alignment between business and academia.

“Innovative programs like Learn and Earn put community colleges at the forefront of providing students with valuable skills for successful careers and providing industry with a competitive 21st-century workforce,” Swanson said. He thanked President Fifield for her leadership in supporting implementation of the program.

Swanson also spoke about earning an associate’s degree at Cuesta College in San Luis Obispo, Calif. 

“During that time a Cuesta counselor got me excited about engineering,” Swanson said. “He saw that I had the potential to become an engineer.”

Swanson then obtained a bachelor’s degree in engineering from California Polytechnic State University. He joined Raytheon in 1972, rising from the factory floor to the company’s most senior position.

“Community college was the spark and foundation for my education,” Swanson said. “Community college changed my life … and I hope my experience can serve as an example of what is possible, of the doors that your education can open.”

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