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MIT Lincoln Lab director named doctoral graduation ceremony speaker

Eric D. Evans, director of the MIT Lincoln Laboratory, will deliver the keynote address at Northeastern’s doctoral graduation ceremony on Thursday, May 4. He is among the nation’s foremost experts in the development of remote sensing systems, detection of explosive threats, and ship antimissile defense.

Evans is responsible for the strategic direction and overall technical and administrative operations of a critical research asset within the United States’ defense infrastructure. The multidisciplinary laboratory, which has 4,000 employees and is run by MIT for the Department of Defense, focuses on advanced technology development and system prototyping for national security needs.

Evans will address Northeastern’s largest-ever class of graduating doctoral candidates. The university’s strengths in use-inspired and interdisciplinary research, along with talented faculty, have created an intellectually ambitious and entrepreneurial environment for Ph.D. education.

Growing Northeastern’s doctoral programs, particularly with expanded experiential learning opportunities, is also a core theme of the university’s new academic plan. This commitment is underscored by critical investments, including the new Interdisciplinary Science and Engineering Complex and the hiring of nearly 600 tenure and tenure-track faculty since 2006. Northeastern also recently launched the Ph.D. Network—an organization through which doctoral students can access myriad resources, from travel funding and professional development to assistance navigating support services in areas such as career preparation, diversity, housing, and child care, and family needs.

“It is a privilege for me to speak at Northeastern, and I am looking forward to meeting the Ph.D. graduates,” Evans said.

Evans is also vice chair of the Defense Science Board and has co-led task forces on improvised explosive devices, cybersecurity, and reliability in cloud computing. He is chairman of the board for the National GEM Consortium, which supports graduate STEM education for underrepresented minorities, and he is a member of the Massport Security Advisory Council.  He has served as an advisor to the U.S. Strategic Command Senior Advisory Group, and he is a former member of the Los Alamos and Lawrence-Livermore National Laboratory Nuclear Mission Committee.

Evans’ previous positions at Lincoln Laboratory include head of the Air and Missile Defense Technology Division and group leader of the Air Defense Techniques Group. He has also worked as a radar design engineer on U.S. Navy programs, developing antenna and microwave components, adaptive signal processing algorithms, and low cross-section targets for a new adaptive array radar for fleet defense.

Evans is a member of the National Academy of Engineering and a fellow of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers and the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics. He has authored more than 50 journal and conference publications.

He holds bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degrees in electrical engineering from The Ohio State University.

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