Speaker delivers inspiring Commencement address

Dr. Francesco Svelto, Rector of the University of Pavia in Italy, encouraged graduating engineering students at Tufts to seek out new frontiers.
Dr. Francesco Svelto delivering Commencement remarks

On Sunday, May 21, Dr. Francesco Svelto spoke at the Phase II Commencement ceremony for the Tufts University School of Engineering. Addressing graduates and their loved ones, the Rector of the University of Pavia in Italy shared his wisdom with the crowd.

Dr. Svelto infused his speech with examples from his career and provided graduates with valuable advice as they prepare to move into the next phase of their lives. He emphasized the importance of embracing failure, finding a good advisor, and thinking laterally. Dr. Svelto’s own career trajectory aligned with an era of advancement and innovation in wireless devices, which afforded him the opportunity to grow personally and professionally as he explored this new frontier. 

Dr. Svelto encouraged Tufts’ newest graduates to find their own personal frontiers, where things are the right mix of adrenaline and anxiety. Those who push the frontiers of what is possible, he said, have the potential to become excellent leaders. “Great leadership is not just about technical expertise, but also about creativity and a sense of limitlessness,” he told the audience.

Following his speech, Dr. Svelto received the Dean’s Medal in recognition of his considerable achievements in his career thus far and for his service in delivering remarks during Tufts School of Engineering Commencement celebrations. At Tufts University, the Dean’s Medal is awarded to show appreciation for loyal service, to acknowledge major contributions, to honor those whose ideas and discoveries have been important to the university, and to recognize actions that benefit a school of the university. The Deal’s Medal is one of four types of medals that the university awards, and is the only medal awarded by deans of the individual schools within Tufts. 

Dr. Svelto earned his laurea and PhD degrees in electrical engineering. He is a cofounder and technical advisor for RFDomus inc., a startup dedicated to highly integrated GPS receivers that was acquired by NXP Semiconductors in 2007. Currently a professor of electrical engineering and rector of the University of Pavia in Italy, he directs a microelectronics research laboratory in collaboration with semiconductor manufacturing corporation STMicroelectronics. He is a co-recipient of the IEEE Journal of Solid-State Circuits’ 2003 Best Paper Award, an IEEE Fellow, and a Solid-State Circuits Society distinguished lecturer. Learn more about Dr. Svelto.