Photo Credit: Blue Origin

Blue Origin President to Speak at Embry-Riddle Daytona Beach Fall Commencement Ceremony

The university will also award the largest number of Ph.D. degrees in its history at the ceremony.

Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University’s Daytona Beach Campus will welcome guest speaker Rob Meyerson, President of Blue Origin, as part of a weekend-long honoring of graduates at its Fall 2016 Commencement, Master’s Hooding and ROTC Commissioning ceremonies to be held Dec. 16-19.

As the university celebrates the culmination of its 90th anniversary, the Dec. 19 Commencement ceremony will also feature another milestone with 10 Ph.D. degrees scheduled to be awarded – the largest number in the school’s history.

Doctoral candidates include Engineering Physics and Aviation, and, for the first time, in Aerospace Engineering, Mechanical Engineering and Human Factors.

ROTC Commissioning Ceremonies will be on Friday, Dec. 16, Sunday, Dec. 18 and Monday, Dec. 19 on campus, with the Master’s Hooding Ceremony taking place Sunday at the ICI Center on campus. The commencement ceremony featuring guest speaker Meyerson will be Monday, Dec. 19, at 10 a.m. at the Ocean Center, 101 N. Atlantic Ave., Daytona Beach.

Rob MeyersonSince 2003, Meyerson has overseen the steady growth of Blue Origin, an American privately-funded aerospace manufacturer and spaceflight services company headquartered in Kent, Wash. Blue Origin is developing reusable launch systems to enable a future in which millions of people are living and working in space. Vehicles and technologies under development include the New Shepard system for suborbital human and research flights, the BE-3 LOX/LH2 rocket engine, the BE-4 LOX/LNG rocket engine, as well as orbital launch systems.

Prior to joining Blue Origin, Meyerson was a Senior Manager at Kistler Aerospace, responsible for the landing and thermal protection systems of a two-stage reusable launch vehicle, as well as all technical activities related to Kistler’s Space Launch Initiative contract with NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center.

He began his career at NASA’s Johnson Space Center (JSC) as a cooperative education student and progressed to positions in which he led the aerodynamic design of the Space Shuttle Orbiter Drag Parachute, as well as the overall design, integration and flight test of a gliding parachute for the X-38 Crew Rescue Vehicle project.

Meyerson earned a B.S. in Aerospace Engineering from the University of Michigan and a Master's Degree in Engineering Management from the University of Houston. He is an AIAA Associate Fellow and former member of the Aerodynamic Decelerator Systems Technical Committee. He is a Trustee at the Museum of Flight in Seattle, a member of the board of the Commercial Spaceflight Federation, and is an avid supporter of the University of Michigan and the University of Washington.

For directions to the Ocean Center, go to For more information on the Daytona Beach commencement and a live streaming broadcast of the ceremony, go to

Details of the Commissioning Ceremonies and Master’s Hooding Ceremony are below:

Friday, Dec. 16

  • Army ROTC Commissioning Ceremony – The Army Reserve Officers' Training Corps will conduct its annual fall commissioning ceremony in the Henderson Welcome Center at 10 a.m. There will be a reception immediately following the ceremony.

Sunday, Dec. 18:

  • Master's Hooding Ceremony – The Master’s Hooding Ceremony for graduate students will be held at 10 the ICI Center on the Daytona Beach Campus with College of Arts and Sciences Dean Dr. Karen F. Gaines serving as the featured speaker. A reception immediately following the Master’s Hooding Ceremony will be held for graduate students and their guests. Parking is open to the public. Both seating and parking are on a first-come, first-serve basis.
  • Air Force ROTC Commissioning Ceremony – The Air Force Reserve Officers' Training Corps will commission its cadets as Second Lieutenants in the U.S. Air Force. The ceremony begins at 1 p.m. in the Capt. Willie Miller Instructional Center's Gale Lemerand Auditorium followed by a reception in the same location.

Monday, Dec. 19:

  • U.S. Navy/Marine Corps ROTC Commissioning Ceremony – The Naval Reserve Officers' Training Corps will host its fall commissioning ceremony at 3 p.m. in the Henderson Welcome Center. Graduating Midshipmen will take the oath of office to commission as Ensigns in the Navy or Second Lieutenants in the Marine Corps. A reception will be held immediately following the ceremony in the same location.


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Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University is the world’s largest, oldest and most comprehensive institution specializing in aviation, aerospace, engineering and related degree programs. A fully accredited university, Embry-Riddle is also a major research center, seeking solutions to real-world problems in partnership with the aerospace industry, other universities and government agencies. A nonprofit, independent institution, Embry-Riddle offers more than 100 associate, baccalaureate, master’s and Ph.D. degree programs in its colleges of Arts & Sciences, Aviation, Business, Engineering and Security & Intelligence. The university educates students at residential campuses in Daytona Beach, Fla., and Prescott, Ariz., through its Worldwide Campus with more than 135 locations in the United States, Europe and Asia, and through online programs. For more information, visit, follow us on Twitter (@EmbryRiddle) and, and find expert videos at