Skip to main content

Honorary degree recipient - Reshma Shetty

Citation Reader: Marta Kersten-Oertel


Mr. Chancellor, it is my honour to present to you Dr. Reshma Shetty, to recognize her role in advancing synthetic biology.

In a Boston-area apartment back in 2008, Reshma Shetty, three of her fellow biological engineering PhD students and their graduate supervisor at MIT had the foresight and ambition to found a microorganism design company, Ginkgo BioWorks.

Since then, Ginkgo has been at the forefront of the fast-growing field of synthetic biology, helping its partners build organisms that lead to more efficient and sustainable goods in fields ranging from health and agriculture to cosmetics and consumer goods. In 2018 Ginkgo became the first synthetic biology startup to receive “unicorn” status as a private company valued at over $1 billion USD. 

Dr. Shetty and her Ginkgo co-founders helped launch the International Genetic Engineering Machine, or iGEM. The non-profit is dedicated to advancing synthetic biology and runs the iGEM Competition, which gives students — including an award-winning team from Concordia — the chance to push the boundaries of synthetic biology.

Dr. Shetty has already received several awards and honours for her achievements. In 2022, Forbes magazine ranked her among the 100 most successful U.S. women entrepreneurs, executives and entertainers.

Mr. Chancellor, on behalf of the Board of Governors and Senate, it is my privilege and honour to present to you Dr. Reshma Shetty, so that you may confer upon her the degree of Doctor of Science, honoris causa.

Back to top

© Concordia University