A Ford Motor Co. executive told Lawrence Technological University’s incoming first-year students Friday that when it comes to their higher education, “It’s the right time, you’re the right people, and you’re in the right city.”
Klevorn spoke at LTU’s annual Convocation ceremony, held to welcome first-year students and their families. During the event, she received LTU’s fourth annual Global Citizen Award, presented annually to individuals who have shown great character and leadership in addressing global issues and promoting international understanding. LTU welcomed about 500 students at the event, held at its Ridler Field House.
Klevorn assumed her current post at Ford, executive vice president and president of Mobility, June 1. In this role, she is responsible for Ford Smart Mobility LLC, which was formed in 2016 to accelerate the company’s plans to design, build, grow, and invest in mobility services, as well as information technology and global data, insight and analytics. Klevorn is also a member of the LTU Board of Trustees.
Klevorn told the students that four great trends are shaping the future of both transportation and society:
• The growth of cities, which makes mobility more challenging
• Air quality is getting worse worldwide, although transportation is only the No. 3 cause of it, behind cities themselves and agriculture
• The growth of the global middle class, with fewer people living in abject poverty
• Changes in customer attitudes – thanks to electronics, customers now expect everything to happen at lightning speed
Klevorn said the students were the right people to meet those challenges, because “you grew up with technology, and you’re accustomed to working collaboratively and working as a team.”
And she said they’re in the right place because “Detroit has been a tech hub since 1903. Innovation is in our DNA.”
LTU President Virinder Moudgil also addressed the students, congratulating them on choosing LTU, and introducing the university’s deans and top faculty members.