Bridging Academics and Industry
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Each semester, MBA students are required to participate in the Applied Learning course led by Center Director Jake Dean. This course is designed to connect classroom learning content to industry. The students had a full semester of diverse opportunities. Applied learning events included:
- Supply chain implications of the sharing economy
- Mock interviews with EAB member Bob Stefansic and his leadership team
- Blockchain opportunities with EAB members Steve Loehr and Kevin O’Marah
- The Beer Game (supply chain simulation)
- Supply chain risk management (together with Risk Management & Insurance MBA students)
- Six Sigma Yellow Belt certification
- Site visit to Rockwell Automation, hosted by EAB member Ernest Nicolas
- Short Discussions on Deep Topics – student-led mini-presentations on electric cars, retail, television, the US Postal Service, and international trade
Rockwell Automation Visit
By Will Scherbarth
On November 10th, students and faculty were invited by Executive Advisory Board member Ernest Nicolas to Rockwell Automation’s Mequon, Wisconsin facility. While there, Ernest and his team graciously made themselves available to the Center for an in-depth overview of procurement, logistics, and manufacturing operations.
The morning began with Michael Thibaudeau providing an overview of his role as a strategic sourcing manager at Rockwell. Michael subsequently handed off the presentation to Joseph Winland who covered production and inventory control at the facility. Joseph’s presentation exemplified real-world applications of Professor Greg DeCroix’s operations management and inventory control lectures provided to MBA students in their first year. To wrap up the morning, Ernest invited Lisa Landry, a transportation manager, to provide both a tactical and strategic view of Rockwell’s logistics operations.
The site visit concluded with a guided tour of Rockwell’s Mequon facility where students were able to observe various parts of the production processes supporting Rockwell’s automation solutions. Overall, the Rockwell team provided an excellent opportunity to connect academic lessons with a Fortune 500 organization and its supply chain.