2012 Santa Fe Commencement
St John’s College, Santa Fe is celebrating its forty-fifth commencement on Saturday, May 19, with an address by alumnus Robert J. Bienenfeld.
Robert J. Bienenfeld is senior manager, environmental and energy strategy, for American Honda’s Product Regulatory Office. In this capacity, Mr. Bienenfeld was responsible for Honda’s discussions with the White House that led to two sets of regulations, covering the years 2012 to 2025, on greenhouse gases and fuel economy. Over his 30-plus-year career at Honda, he held a number of positions, with responsibilities for strategic planning and research, product planning, new business development, and alternative fuel vehicle sales and marketing. Among his key accomplishments were Honda’s investment in Flexcar (a car-sharing company since merged with Zipcar) and in FuelMaker, a home refueling appliance for natural gas vehicles, and the marketing of Honda’s first battery electric car, first natural gas-powered vehicle, and first hybrid vehicle. A 1980 graduate of St. John’s College, Santa Fe, Mr. Bienenfeld now serves as a member of the Board of Visitors and Governors. He currently resides in Long Beach, California.
There are 74 candidates for the 2012 graduation. St. John’s College strives to give students the tools to understand the human condition through sustained interaction with the great minds of Western civilization. Each of the college’s undergraduate students study a comprehensive curriculum based on the Great Books. There are no majors and no departments; all students study an all-required program, which includes extensive discussion, reflection, and writing on the classics of literature, philosophy, theology, psychology, political science, economics, history, mathematics, laboratory sciences, and music. Each senior is required to write and defend a senior essay in an oral examination as a requirement of graduation.