Greetings to one and all! This is an exciting day, a truly remarkable day, as we gather remotely, one last time, to honor the graduating class of 2021. Graduates, on behalf of the College of Engineering, please accept our deepest, most heartfelt congratulations!
Commencement day is always a moment worthy of celebration, but this year, because of all that has stood in your way, your achievements are especially impressive. I hope that your success during this difficult time will inspire future classes to overcome whatever obstacles stand in their way.
During the sometimes-surreal past year, you might have wondered if this day would actually arrive. If you had doubts, you faced uncertainty enough to warrant them. If you had worries, you had no shortage of valid reasons for them. If you had fears, you can be sure that they were shared by people around the globe.
But you did not give in to any of it. With the support of faculty, staff, friends, and, most importantly, your family, you overcame every obstacle. You kept at it, one Zoom class meeting, office-hours session, or project meeting at a time. Thanks to your tenacity and your resilience, today you will receive a degree declaring you an official graduate of the UC Santa Barbara College of Engineering. We are tremendously proud of you as you move into the next phase of your career as a lifelong Gaucho alumnus.
Having completed the undergraduate program, you are prepared for whatever lies ahead. You are problem-solvers, ready to enhance the engineering field with your unique perspective, skills, and knowledge, buttressed by the same dedication that got you here today. We look forward to big things from all of you, whether you enter industry or continue to graduate school. As an engineer, each of you is uniquely positioned to making this a better world for all.
We offer hearty congratulations to each and every one of you and to our new group of Gaucho-graduate parents, who have raised you and stood by you all the way! We wish you professional success and personal fulfillment in all that you do. Please stay in touch. You will always be a part of our wonderful Gaucho community!
Rod C. Alferness