Center News Magazine: Remarks of Dean Kenneth Marians

Pictured: Kenneth J. Marians Dean Kenneth J. Marians

Inaugural Commencement
The Louis V. Gerstner, Jr. Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences
Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center
May 11, 2012
Remarks of Dean Kenneth J. Marians

As has already been said, this is a very special occasion. We are about to present the first four degrees to graduates of the Louis V. Gerstner, Jr. Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences. For me, this is a deeply personal event. Over the past nine years, with the help of many, we have created a new graduate school that has risen rapidly to become one of the premiere training grounds in cancer biology and a model for training of biomedical sciences in the new millennium.

We've just honored the two men who were the essential players in the creation of GSK: Lou Gerstner and Harold Varmus. And I want to add my appreciation and congratulations, and to thank them for entrusting me with realizing their vision.

As it is for Harold, to me today is all about the students. Our students are our lifeblood.  We may be up here all wearing fancy academic regalia, but we were all graduate students once.  In the 21st century, we are now able to take our understanding of how a cell works and apply that directly to understanding the underlying nature of human disease.

The scientific lifetime of our new graduates, the next 50 years or so, will be full of astounding discoveries and insights. Without students, all that potential will atrophy and disappear.

So I salute all the students who have chosen this career. I congratulate you on your accomplishments. I welcome you into the fold. And I envy your path of discovery.