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Upcoming Commencement Dates

  • June 10, 2018
  • June 9, 2019
  • June 14, 2020
  • June 13, 2021
  • June 12, 2022

Dartmouth 2011 Honorary Degree Recipient: Howard Hiatt, MD (Doctor of Science)

HOWARD HIATT, you have said that the most gratifying part of your long career in medicine has been caring for the sick and impoverished. Compassion is your calling card, and for more than 60 years you have used your profound talents and legendary work ethic to expand our knowledge of health and illness, reduce health disparities, and ensure patient safety throughout the world. A brilliant student, you vaulted from Harvard College and into Harvard Medical School after only two years. You turned your talents first to basic science, serving on the team at the Pasteur Institute in Paris that identified messenger RNA. As a young researcher, you helped bring molecular and cell biology to medical problems at Harvard-affiliated hospitals.

You helped thousands of patients during your time as an oncologist and chief of medicine at Beth Israel Hospital. As Dean of the Harvard School of Public Health, you guided the institution to new prominence in the biological and decision sciences, health policy, and management. You developed and led the Harvard Medical Practice Study, which has been called the most important investigation of medical malpractice in history. Your interest in human well-being was ever broad: as a founder of International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War, you courageously opposed "the final epidemic" of global nuclear arms build-up.

At Brigham and Women’s Hospital, you cofounded the Division of Social Medicine and Health Inequalities. You also played a significant role in the growth and success of Partners In Health, bringing treatment of AIDS and multidrug-resistant tuberculosis to resource-poor countries.

As a teacher and mentor to thousands of medical students and young doctors, you cultivated a generation of socially responsible physicians. And now you are nurturing their successors, tirelessly guiding, encouraging, and supporting the careers—and spirits—of our most promising, and most humane, young clinicians.

Howard, you have been hailed for making public health the watchdog and conscience of medicine. Your vision, initiative, and instinct for collaboration have increased our capacity to care for one another. Dartmouth is proud to award you the honorary degree Doctor of Science.

Last Updated: 3/17/16