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Editor's note: Xia Deming was admitted to the Department of Electrical Engineering and Applied Electronics of Tsinghua University in 1998. After graduating as an undergraduate in 2002, he directly studied for a doctorate degree in the Department, under the tutelage of Academician Lu Qiang. After graduating with his doctorate in July 2007, he joined the Northeast Branch of State Grid Corporation of China, and now he is the Chief Engineer of the Regulation and Control Sub-center. He has successively won honorary titles such as the National Model Worker and the National May 1st Labor Medal. He has published more than 20 academic papers, obtained 19 national invention patent authorizations, 2 national computer software copyrights, and more than 20 various scientific and technological awards.

Dreams Realized by Persistence, Success Determined by Details

— Speech at the Graduation Ceremony of Undergraduates in 2021

Undergraduate in 1998 and Ph.D in 2002 of the Department of Electrical Engineering and Applied Electronics

Xia Deming

Dear teachers, dear students:

It is a great honor to be invited to attend this graduation ceremony for undergraduates in 2021. First of all, please allow me to express my heartiest congratulations to the students who are about to graduate.

I was admitted to the Department of Electrical Engineering of Tsinghua University in 1998. I graduated with a bachelor’s degree and received my PhD in 2002, under the tutelage of Academician Lu Qiang, a leading academician in electrical engineering. Encouraged by Teacher Lu, after graduating from my PhD in 2007, I did not stay in Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou, Shenzhen or any other first-tier city, instead, I chose to return to my hometown to take root in the black land of Northeast China, and joined the Northeast Power Grid Corporation to engage in dispatching operations. It has been 14 years in a flash, but the experience of studying and living in Tsinghua has always been the most precious wealth and inexhaustible source of motivation in my life, and it has inspired me to stick to my original aspirations and forge ahead in the ordinary. I am honored to have this opportunity to share my growth insights with you:

The first is not to forget your dream and not to forget your original intention. Everyone has a dream, and graduation is coming soon. I believe everyone is full of ambitions, dreams, pursuits, and eager to make a big career and realize the value of life. Before going to university, my dream was to be admitted to Tsinghua University. In 9 years of study in Tsinghua University, I grew from an ignorant boy who knows nothing about electric power systems to a doctor in electric power with a solid theoretical foundation, and gradually extend my dream to becoming an expert in power system production and operation. When I really came to the first stop in the workplace and worked as a power dispatcher, I realized that there were still many things that I don't understand, and some seemingly simple tasks were hard to start for me. The theories on the textbook and engineering practice are separated by the inheritance of "teachers to apprentices", the accumulation of experience and lessons, and so on. These are social practice lessons that every newcomer needs to make up. The experience of Tsinghua University has given me the courage to face difficulties and the spirit of not admitting defeat, allowing me to calm down and start from scratch. When I started working, I usually stayed in the company to study when I had nothing to do. I was familiar with network information, hydrological parameters, and dispatching procedures. I tracked new technologies and problems developed at home and abroad, I also actively undertook various scientific research and engineering projects in the department.

Now when I think about it, it was with the initial persistence and subsequent accumulation by which I gradually grew into an excellent expert of the State Grid, one of the talents at the thousand level and hundred level of Liaoning Province’s "Hundred-Thousand Talents Project", one of the Outstanding Experts in Liaoning Province, one of the talents in the Program of Young Talents for Promoting Liaoning, of the winners of the National May 1st Labor Medal, and one of the National Model Workers, and realized my dream step by step.

The second is to pay attention to details and strive for perfection constantly. From a power dispatcher and a person responsible for system stability, to a deputy director, a director and a chief engineer of the sub-center, I have been engaged in safe production and operation there. There is no small matter in production, as safety is more important than the Mount Tai. In order to do well in production and operation, I have repeatedly checked every control limit calculated and every fixed value set, and carefully revised every draft of the rules and regulations. Regardless of whether I am the author, countersigner or reviewer of regulations, valuation plans, I always have a sense of responsibility that I am at the last line of defense. I keep my mobile phone by my side at any time and keep it on in 24 hours a day to ensure that the dispatching station or other colleagues can contact me as soon as possible in the event of any emergency in the operation of the power grid, and receive technical support timely.

For more than ten years, I have always been in awe, doing every job carefully, avoiding any omissions and mistakes, and getting thoroughly familiar with the main safety issues, operation regulations, and control strategies of the Northeast Power Grid, when I was called, I can always provide accurate information, give professional advice, and become a trustworthy person for leaders and colleagues.

The third is to bear heavy burdens bravely and put the motherland in heart. In recent years, the State Grid has taken many measures to protect the safe and stable operation of large power grids and assist in wind power and photovoltaic new energy consumption, overcome numerous difficulties, and innovate to create benefits, which are significantly important in the safe, stable and economic operation of large power grids. And I have the honor to participate in it, combining theory with practice, and have done something beneficial to the company, the country, and the society. I am very proud and grateful for our country’s energy transformation and upgrading during the period of rapid development of new energy. On the big stage of achieving the national strategic goal of "carbon peaking and carbon neutrality" and building a new power system centered at new energies, I am given opportunities to improve my personal ability and realize a little personal value. Therefore, I published more than 20 academic papers, obtained 19 national invention patents, and more than 20 various scientific and technological awards.

Everyone came to this world with different responsibilities and missions. In a narrow scope, we live up to the expectations of our parents, relatives, teachers, and friends; in a wide scope, we must have a little sense of taking our country as our home, pursue the realization of self-worth, and make the country, the nation, and the world a better place because of our existence. General Secretary Xi Jinping pointed out that it is necessary to have the spiritual realm of "I was not indispensable to success" and the historical responsibility of "I was there in success". In our daily work, we don't have to worry too much about personal gains and losses, but we have to be full of teamwork spirit, and think about doing something and getting something done. Sometimes, hard work may not be rewarded immediately, but it is even harder to reap without hard work. The best mentality is to work hard, uphold Tsinghua people's spirit of "Patriotic, dedicated and pursuing excellence" and the school spirit of "Actions speak louder than words", always keep a positive heart and never give up or abandon our dreams and goals.

Time never stays but flows like a river. I always think I am a person who never forgets his dream but pursuing painstakingly, I love my position where I stay and I keep improving on the position which I love before I am an expert on the position where I keep improving. If we persist and strive for perfection to complete every task, we will be rewarded great skills by small details, we will be lifted to a high level by small tasks, and we can be given great tasks even we are common men.

Little brothers and sisters, today, we are proud of Tsinghua University; tomorrow, we will also work hard to polish Tsinghua University. Dreams are ahead on our paths, and only by standing and walking on solid ground can we can we move forward steadily. Happiness comes from hard work. Let's set sail together, seize every day and live it to the fullest, adhere to Tsinghua people's emotion of taking our motherland as our home, and contribute our strength to the prosperity and the rejuvenation our country, and the happiness of the Chinese people!

Thank you all!

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