Bachelor of Science, Purdue University, 1950; Doctor of Philosophy, University of Chicago, 1954; honorary degree, U. Cordoba, Argentina, 1989; honorary degree, U. Salamanca, Spain, 1992.
He went on to obtain an undergraduate degree in mathematics from Purdue University in 1950. After time at the Institute for Advanced Study, Princeton University, and the University of California, Berkeley, he joined the faculty at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where he remained until his retirement in 1993. Kostant"s work has involved representation theory, Lie groups, Lie algebras, homogeneous spaces, differential geometry and mathematical physics, particularly symplectic geometry.
He has given several lectures on the Lie group E8.
He has been one of the principal developers of the theory of geometric quantization. His introduction of the theory of prequantization has led to the theory of quantum Toda lattices.
The Kostant partition function is named after him. His students include James Harris Simons, James Lepowsky, Moss Sweedler, David Vogan, and Birgit Speh.
At present he has more than 100 mathematical descendants.
Member NAS, American Academy Arts and Sciences, American Math Society (colloquium lecturer 1985).
Married Ann Rebecca Siller, February 16, 1968. Children: Abbe, Steven, Shoshanna. Stepchildren: Elizabeth, David.