News and Awards

Gartner Ranks Smeal No. 1 in Supply Chain Undergraduate Education

Gartner Inc., has again ranked the Penn State Smeal College of Business No. 1 in supply chain undergraduate education. In addition, Gartner’s report indicates that Penn State scored highest on the number of industry mentions, reflecting “its strong brand with the supply chain community at large.”

Supply chain practitioners and academics were asked to rate U.S. supply chain education providers based on industry value, program size and program scope. Also factored in were data on enrollment, offerings and faculty size.

“We work hard to stay on the forefront of the supply chain education and research, through our leading faculty and our connections with industry through the Center for Supply Chain Research,” said Charles H. Whiteman, the John and Becky Surma Dean of Smeal. “This ranking brings a welcome confirmation from our peers and the industry that we continue to produce some of the top graduates in supply chain.”

Previous reports on supply chain education providers were released in 2011 and 2009, naming Smeal No. 1 both times. The university rankings are part of Gartner’s larger research project identifying skill and talent gaps in the supply chain industry.

A graduate education ranking will be released in the coming months.

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Supply Chain's Preciado Honored for Teaching Excellence

Felisa Preciado, clinical associate professor of supply chain management, has been named the 2014 recipient of the Penn State Smeal College of Business Fred Brand Jr. Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching.

Preciado joined the Smeal faculty in 2007 after spending several years in industry at Kimberly-Clark, where she served as a supply chain senior specialist for Latin American operations. She holds a bachelor’s degree from Florida A&M University, a master’s degree from Florida State University, and a doctorate from Purdue University, all in industrial engineering.

Faculty are nominated for the Brand Award by their academic departments. Students then offer their support of the nominees, with a committee of past honorees and student representatives selecting the recipients.

The award is named in honor of 1932 Penn State graduate Fred Brand Jr. Brand was a successful insurance executive who spent much of his career with Connecticut Mutual Life Insurance Company. He died in 1998.

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Smeal Alumni in Profile: Trotman Uses Business Logistics Background to Fill Need in Online Marketplace

While Karla Trotman ‘98 was a Business Logistics major—a precursor to today’s Supply Chain and Information Systems major—in the Penn State Smeal College of Business, she took an independent study course examining how growing use of the Internet might change consumer behavior in the coming years.

“My independent study course was focused on the question of whether or not people would eventually buy things online, so I did a lot of research into how people were projecting that e-commerce would develop.”

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Akhil Kumar Serves as Associate Editor

Akhil Kumar, professor of Management Information Systems, will be serving as associate editor for ACM Transactions on Management Information Systems (ACM TMIS). For more information on ACM TMIS, please see

David Huff Receives MBA Teaching Award

Congratulations to David Huff on receiving the MBA Class of 2014 Best All-Around Teacher Award at the 2014 MBA Faculty Teaching Awards in April.

Veronica Villena Receives Best Reviewer Award

Congratulations to Veronica Villena on being selected for a Best Reviewer Award from the Operations Management (OM) Division of the Academy of Management. She will be recognized at the Operations Management Division Business Meeting at the annual Academy of Management meeting that will be held in Philadelphia in August.

Brent Moritz Awarded for Best Research Presentation

Brent Moritz, Assistant Professor of Supply Chain Management, was named the Best Research Presentation at the 9th Annual Behavioral Operations Conference held on June 12-14 in Cologne, Germany. He shared this award with Yesim Orhun, Assistant Professor of Marketing from the University of Michigan. Dr. Moritz is also the first two-time winner of the award, having also been recognized in 2008. The annual conference brings together researchers with a common interest in the operations interface between human behavior and analytic modeling, with the aim of sharing current work, identifying new problems, and developing relationships between scholars in the field. The host sponsor was the University of Cologne, with supporting sponsors Michigan, Minnesota, Penn State and UT-Dallas. Penn State hosted the first Behavioral Operations Conference in 2006, and the 2015 conference will be at Cornell University on June 24-26.

Company Looks to Penn State Smeal for Next Generation Supply Chain Talent

The Penn State Smeal College of Business is one of only two schools from which Burlington Stores, a national off-price retailer headquartered in New Jersey, actively recruits for its Supply Chain Leader Development Program. This leadership program for supply chain graduates is an 18-month program that introduces new graduates to the various roles and responsibilities of leadership at the company.

“We find that students from Penn State are able to hit the ground running in the supply chain area and also have a broad foundational understanding of business,” said Donna Norton, talent acquisition manager for college recruitment.

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Bernie Quiroga Awarded Doctoral Scholarship

Bernie Quiroga has been awarded the The Peter E. Liberti and Judy D. Olian Doctoral Scholarship 2014/'15. The Liberti-Olian Scholarship is a competitive award conferred to a full time PhD Student enrolled in the Smeal College of Business who has achieved a superior academic record and who manifests promise of outstanding academic success.

Bernie is a Business Economist (with expertise in Microeconometrics and Experimental Economics) and Management Scientist. Before joining Penn State as a graduate student, he was a faculty member at the Pontifical Catholic University of Chile and the University of the Andes, both in Santiago, Chile. He has taught Statistics, Econometrics, Managerial Decision Making, Data Analysis, Microeconomics, and Optimization Methods, at the graduate (MBA, M.Sc.) and undergraduate levels.

Bernie's current research is devoted to Auctions and Procurement Decision Making. In particular, his work explains bidding behavior in governmental procurement auction processes where price and quality-related dimensions are taken into consideration for contract assignment, combining laboratory experiments and game-theoretical structural estimation techniques. His research is tied to practice through his scientific collaboration with the Chilean Public Procurement Agency, ChileCompra, in an effort to implement transparency and efficiency in public procurement processes. In other research, he studies procurement inventory decisions under competition, financial performance of public family-controlled firms, and hedonic valuation measures of unobservable, non-market attributes.

Smeal Professor Balances Supply and Demand with Honors Program

Robert Novack, specializes in moving things from one step to the next, whether it’s a product rolling onto the next conveyor belt in an assembly line or a student graduating from Penn State and moving on to the start of their career.

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