Excellence in a Global Context: Dr. Krishna Palepu Delivers Cum Laude Address

Dr. Krishna Palepu, Ross Graham Walker Professor of Business Administration at Harvard Business School

On April 25, Roxbury Latin celebrated in Hall the ten members of Class I whose efforts and accomplishments earned them membership in the Cum Laude Society. The school was honored to welcome as the Cum Laude speaker Dr. Krishna Palepu, the Ross Graham Walker Professor of Business Administration at Harvard Business School, where he joined the faculty in 1983. At Harvard, Dr. Palepu also serves as Senior Advisor to the university president. As Headmaster Brennan said in his introduction of Dr. Palepu, “He is a manifest example of lifelong commitment to the academic pursuit and scholarly delight that we celebrate this morning.” Each spring, the all-school Cum Laude ceremony honors the life of the mind—affirming that at the heart of a good school is scholarly engagement. The following seniors were inducted into the Cum Laude Society this year:

Dominic James Gaziano

Ethan Elliott Kee

Makoto Kobayashi

Benjamin Andrew Morris

Kalyan McKinzey Palepu

Milan Mehta Rosen

Gilbert Alexander Rosenthal

Rohan Sunil Sheth

Lucas Zikai Zheng

Erik Jeffrey Zou


In his address, “Excellence in a Global Context,” Dr. Palepu urged students to redouble their commitment to excellence, in whatever endeavor they pursue; embrace other cultures; and seek out minority experiences. “These are the elements of becoming a successful global citizen,” said Dr. Palepu. “Fortunately, your RL education already gives you a head-start in all the three areas. It is important that you continue this journey as you go to college and beyond.”


“I hope you will embrace pursuit of excellence in a globalized context as enthusiastically as I have done,” he continued. “The rewards can be rich and exciting. As a scholar of globalization, I have had the privilege of traveling to over forty different countries, and making friends all over the world. In the process, I was able to become a better human being, a better teacher and scholar, and a better global citizen. And I have been able to get the opportunity to stand in front of you on this stage, and celebrate the excellence of the RL community. Best of luck to this year’s exceptional graduating class and to the cum laude inductees. We are all looking forward to seeing the great things you accomplish in the world in the years to come.”

You can read the full text of Dr. Palepu’s address, “Excellence in a Global Context.”

View photos from the Hall and celebration.