New York University Skip to Content Skip to Search Skip to Navigation Skip to Sub Navigation

Ursula M. Burns Receives Honorary Doctorate from NYU

May 12, 2010
N-412, 2009-10

New York University President John Sexton today bestowed an honorary doctorate on NYU-Poly alumna and Xerox chief executive officer Ursula M. Burns at NYU's 178th Commencement Exercises in Yankee Stadium.  Over 25,000 graduates, faculty, staff, and guests attended the morning ceremony.

The following citation was read in conferring the Doctor of Commercial Science degree, honoris causa, on Ursula M. Burns:

"Ursula M. Burns—chief executive officer of Xerox Corporation, one of America’s most innovative, global companies, whose name we use as a verb.   A math ace from the projects in Lower Manhattan, you were inspired by a wise mother to achieve an exceptional education at NYU’s Polytechnic Institute and Columbia University, earning undergraduate and graduate degrees in mechanical engineering. You began your affiliation with Xerox as a Polytechnic summer intern in 1980 and 20 years later were serving as senior vice president for strategic services and shortly thereafter, president of Business Group Operations, responsible for a $12.5 billion organization comprising five business divisions and the company’s engineering center. Named CEO in July 2009, within a few months you had undertaken the largest acquisition in your company’s history, moving Xerox along the path from a seller of printing equipment and services to a leader in gathering, analyzing, and sharing information. Possessed of a global vision, operational discipline, fearless and decisive management, and deep respect for the opinions of your colleagues, you are a model of enlightened corporate leadership. Wisely, President Barack Obama named you in November 2009 to help lead the national White House initiative to help students excel in science, technology, engineering, and math.

"Ursula M. Burns—as the first black woman to head a Fortune 500 company, you have reached the pinnacle of your profession through hard work and high performance. By virtue of the authority vested in me by New York University, I am pleased to confer upon you the degree of Doctor of Commercial Science, honoris causa."

This Press Release is in the following Topics:
commencement, Events and Traditions

Type: Press Release

Press Contact: John Beckman | (212) 998-6848

Ursula M. Burns Receives Honorary Doctorate from NYU

Ursula M. Burns

Search News

NYU In the News

Entrepreneurship Lab Opens at NYU

Crain’s New York Business covered the opening of the Mark and Debra Leslie Entrepreneurial eLab, which will be the headquarters for NYU’s Entrepreneurial Institute and all of the University’s programs aimed at promoting innovation and startups.

A Globalizer for N.Y.U. in Abu Dhabi

The New York Times profiled Bill Bragin who will become the first executive artistic director of NYU Abu Dhabi’s new performing arts center.

Think Tank to Ponder a Future for Ballet

The New York Times profiled Jennifer Homans, the director of NYU’s new Center for Ballet and the Arts.

The Brilliant Ten: Jonathan Viventi Builds Devices That Decode Thoughts

Popular Science named Assistant Bioengineering Professor Jonathan Viventi as one of its “brilliant ten” for his research into brain implants that could one day halt epileptic episodes:

Living and Leaving the Dream: Adrian Cardenas’ Journey from the Major Leagues to College

The New York Times ran a feature on Adrian Cardenas, a former major league baseball player who is now studying philosophy and creating writing at NYU.

NYU Footer