Honorary Lecture - Prof. Thomas Rizzo: “My five lives as an EPFL professor”


Event details

Date 01.03.2024
Hour 17:1518:15
Speaker Prof. Thomas Rizzo
Location Online
Category Inaugural lectures - Honorary Lecture
Event Language English
My five lives as an EPFL professor
The role of a university professor is many-faceted, and the success of an institution depends upon its faculty fully engaging in the various aspects of its mission. In this talk I will share some of my experiences at EPFL in teaching, research, administration, creating a startup, and in encouraging students to explore big questions of life.

Thomas Rizzo received a B.S. degree in chemistry in 1978 and a PhD in physical chemistry at the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 1983. After a postdoc position at the University of Chicago, he was named Tenure-Track Assistant Professor at the University of Rochester in 1986 and promoted to Full Professor in 1993.  In 1994, he accepted a position of Professor of Chemistry at EPFL.
His distinctions include the Coblentz Society Molecular Spectroscopy Award, the University of Rochester Student Association Teacher of the Year Award, the APLE Prize for best EPFL invention (1999), the Bourke Award of the Faraday Society, the Ron Hites Award from American Society for Mass Spectrometry, and the EPFL Section of Chemistry Best Teacher Award (2021). He is a Fellow of the American Physical Society and the American Association for the Advancement of Sciences.
Professor Rizzo has held a number of administrative positions at the EPFL including Head of the Department of Chemistry from 1997-2004 and the Dean of the School of Basic Sciences from 2004-2017. After finishing as Dean, he received an ERC Advanced Grant from 2018-2023.