MIT-based Physicist to Give Commencement Address

Brandon Sorbom, a physicist from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, will give the commencement address during graduation ceremonies Dec. 17.
Sorbom is a sixth-year Ph.D. candidate at MIT and the lead author of the ARC Reactor design study, a student-led conceptual design for a small, modular fusion pilot plant. Along with other students, researchers and engineers at MIT’s Plasma Science and Fusion Center, he is working on applying new superconducting magnet technology to accelerate the development of fusion energy as a usable power source in the future.
A native of Southern California, Sorbom received bachelor’s degrees in electrical engineering and engineering physics from Loyola Marymount University in 2010. At LMU, he performed undergraduate research in astrophysics and electrostatic confinement fusion, and he built a small fusion device called a Farnsworth Fusor.
As part of his thesis work, Sorbom repaired and refurbished an old linear particle accelerator in the basement of his lab building. He is currently using the accelerator to study the response of superconductors in a simulated fusion reactor operating environment. He hopes that his research will help enable a faster path to realizing fusion as a source of clean energy for the world.

Sorbom was originally invited to speak at the May graduation ceremony, but the event was cut short due to rain.
Graduation ceremonies will take place at 11 a.m. Dec. 17 in Pershing Arena. Following commencement, there will be a reception in the Student Union Building HUB. Graduates, along with their friends and families, are encouraged to share their experiences on social media with #TrumanGraduation, #TrumanCommencement and #BulldogForever. The ceremonies will be livestreamed at, and the campus community can also watch on channel 36.

More information about graduation can be found at

Brandon Sorbom
Photo courtesy of Lillie Paquette - MIT School of Engineering
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