Archived News & Awards from the Supply Chain and Information Systems Department at Penn State University (2014)

Three Smeal Alumni Among Six Penn Staters on List of Under-30 Supply Chain Stars

Six Penn State graduates, including three from the Smeal College of Business, were recently named to the 30 Under 30 Rising Supply Chain Stars list, as compiled by ThomasNet, the Institute for Supply Management (ISM), and Inbound Logistics magazine.

The list honors 30 professionals who are 30 or younger, and already making their mark in purchasing and supply chain management.

With six selections, Penn State was the most represented institution on the list. Five schools had two graduates selected. Fourteen other schools were represented by one graduate each.

Penn State and Smeal have long been among the nation’s most respected providers of supply chain education. In 2014, IT research and advisory firm Gartner named Smeal as the nation’s No. 1 provider for undergraduate and graduate education; the third-consecutive time the college had been recognized as the best.

Penn State’s honorees in the January issue of Inbound Logistics include:

Christina Butterworth
’06 Supply Chain and Information Systems
Butterworth, 30, is a global supply markets project manager for Halliburton in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.

Tania Santiago-Mirabal
’06 Supply Chain and Information Systems
Santiago-Mirabal, 30, is the Latin America indirect procurement manager for Millicom in Miami.

Jamie Walker
’12 Supply Chain and Information Systems
Walker, 24, is a sourcing buyer of raw materials for E.I. DuPont de Nemours & Company in Wilmington, Delaware.

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Poster Session Highlights Latest Evolution in GE-funded Natural Gas Initiative

GE announced in September that it would invest up to $10 million in Penn State to establish a new innovation center focused on driving cutting-edge advancements in the natural gas industry. The center is designed to spur collaboration among Smeal, the colleges of Earth and Mineral Sciences, Engineering, and Information Sciences and Technology and multiple centers and institutes.

Gene Tyworth, John J. Coyle Endowed Professor of Supply Chain Management and department chair of Supply Chain and Information Systems at Smeal, is acting director of CCRINGSS. He said he’s encouraged at how quickly the partnerships have formed.

 “I think it came together surprisingly well considering there are so many moving parts,” he said. “It’s an exciting initiative. On paper everybody wants to work together with different disciplines. The challenge is to break down organizational silos to foster some joint initiatives. I think this is a good first step.”

“I was impressed with the breadth and depth of research being conducted by so many talented people,” said Charles H. Whiteman, John and Becky Surma Dean of Smeal. “It will be fascinating to observe what collaborations evolve from this session.”

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Zhao Presented Research on Drug Shortages at The US Department of Health and Human Services in Washington DC

Supply chain faculty Hui Zhao and her coauthor Justin Jia presented their work on drug shortages to staff from the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the US Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) in Washington DC. Drug shortages in the US have been a challenging problem that poses a significant public health threat in recent years. The number of drugs on shortage tripled from 2005 to 2010 and reached 456 in 2012 (FDA 2011 and GAO 2014). Their presentation on a proposal to mitigate drug shortages was very well received and the results were forwarded by FDA staff to the ASHP/Pew stakeholder meeting for further discussion. The FDA staff also expressed interests in a follow-up study.

Gene Tyworth to Serve as Acting Director of New Penn State Center to Study Natural Gas Supply Chains

GE announced that it will invest up to $10 million in Penn State to establish a new innovation center focused on driving cutting-edge advancements in the natural gas industry. The Center for Collaborative Research on Intelligent Natural Gas Supply Systems at Penn State (CCRINGSS) will engage Penn State researchers and students from many disciplines in collaborative work with various industry stakeholders. The center will seek to advance efficiency and environmental sustainability both through technological innovations and improved supply chain management.

“Natural gas is extremely important as a domestic energy source for the United States and continues to serve as a crucial element in revitalizing Pennsylvania’s economy,” said U.S. Congressman Glenn Thompson. “I fully support the work that Penn State and GE will be doing through CCRINGSS to support new research innovations and create real-world applications that will build upon existing partnerships led by the University to make a positive impact on the industry and the communities of Pennsylvania.”

Read the full article

Terry Harrison Receives Two Awards

Congratulations to Terry Harrison on receiving the George E. Kimball Medal and the INFORMS Fellow Award. The Kimball Medal is awarded for recognition of distinguished service to the Institute and to the profession of operations research and the management sciences with both a medallion and a certificate. The purpose of the INFORMS Fellows Award is to honor those who have accomplished a lifetime achievement in operations research and management science and whose exceptional accomplishments have made significant contributions to the advancement of OR/MS. Newly elected Fellows will be honored at the Fellows Luncheon at the 2014 INFORMS Annual Meeting in San Francisco on November 10.

Nicholson Helps Dairy Farmers Mitigate Financial Risks

Charles Nicholson, clinical associate professor of supply chain management at the Penn State Smeal College of Business, is contributing to the introduction of the Margin Protection Program for Dairy Producers (MPP), a government-sponsored insurance initiative to help the nation’s dairy farmers mitigate their financial risks. Development of the MPP is part of the Agricultural Act of 2014, which was passed by Congress and signed into law by President Barack Obama in February. The program provides financial assistance to participating farmers when the margin — the difference between the price of milk and feed costs — falls below the coverage level selected by the farmer.

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Fall 2014 SC&IS Career Fair

Each semester the SC&IS Department partners with the Center for Supply Chain Research to host the Supply Chain Career Fair. The purpose of this fair is to connect companies with our Supply Chain, Management Information Systems, Industrial Engineering, and Information Sciences & Technology students. The Fall 2014 Career Fair took place on September 9-11 and gave companies the option to interview students the day after they attended the fair. This fair brought in 112 different companies and more than 800 students.

Along with the Supply Chain Career Fair, we hosted our Supply Chain Corporate Information Sessions (Coffee House) during the evening of Monday, September 8. This year’s event hosted 15 corporate sponsor companies running concurrent information sessions with about 150 students attending.

On Monday, February 2, the Supply Chain Corporate Information Sessions will kick off the Spring 2015 recruiting activities. The Supply Chain Career Fair will follow on February 3 & 4.

Supply Chain Researchers Claim a Shift Toward 'Supply Ecosystems'

A new article from Penn State Smeal College of Business faculty member Christopher W. Craighead and colleagues David Ketchen at Auburn University—a 1994 graduate of the Smeal Ph.D. Program—and Russell Crook at the University of Tennessee suggest that disruptive technologies are creating an evolution from supply chains to “supply ecosystems.”

The article, “From Supply Chains to Supply Ecosystems: Implications for Strategic Sourcing Research and Practice, will appear in a forthcoming issue of Journal of Business Logistics.

A “supply ecosystem,” the authors write, can help “reduce risk, improve customer responsiveness, develop innovative products and processes, and market innovations more effectively.”

They continue, “We define a supply ecosystem as a set of interdependent and coordinated organizations that share some common adaptive challenges and that collectively shape the creation and nurturing of a sourcing base that contributes to competitive advantage and superior performance.”

Read the full article

Christian Heilman (MIS/Communications) Wins Emmy Award

Congratulations to Management Information Systems alum Christian Heilman on winning a Mid-Atlantic Emmy in the News-General Assignment Category for his story about drive-in theaters striving to stay open in Pennsylvania. Christian is currently a reporter for WTAJ News.

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Memoriam for Dr. Susan Hong Xu

The faculty, staff, students, and friends of the SC&IS Department mourn the loss of their friend and colleague, Dr. Susan Hong Xu, who passed away in her home in Vienna, Virginia, after a courageous battle with cancer. Susan is survived by her husband, Robert Carritte, of Vienna, Virginia, her parents, XuJingqi and Fang Ye, her sister, Xu Mei, her brother, Xu Zuoying. She was also the sister of the late Xu Zuoquen.

Susan was a long-time faculty member in Smeal. She was a tenured professor of Management Science and Supply Chain Management, chaired the Intercollege Dual-Title Degree Graduate Program in Operations Research from 1998 to 2007, directed Smeal’s PhD program from 2010 to 2012, and was named the Robert G. Schwartz Fellow of Supply Chain and Information Systems.

A memorial service to celebrate Susan’s life and her work within the SC&IS Department, Smeal, and Penn State will be held on Friday, October 10, 2014, at the Eisenhower Chapel at Penn State at 3:00 pm.

Susan’s Obituary

Students learn real-world supply chain, sustainability skills in Italy

This summer, 23 Penn State Smeal College of Business students spent six weeks in Florence, Italy, studying supply chain and management from an Italian perspective with Norm Aggon, assistant department chair and instructor in operations and supply chain management, and Ron Johnson, senior instructor in management and organization.

The course, “Extreme Global Makeover: Integrating Supply Chain Applications, Managerial Skills, and Italian Culture for Personal Success,” provided students an opportunity to visit four different Italian companies and learn to assess their manufacturing operations in terms of supply chain management and sustainability.

“We wanted to combine supply chain and management skills to provide students with an understanding of how to enter and evaluate a manufacturing facility and assess that plant in about three hours,” said Johnson.

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Harrison to Lead Smeal's Sustainability Efforts

Terry Harrison, professor of supply chain and information systems and the Earl P. Strong Executive Education Professor in Business, has been appointed to lead the Penn State Smeal College of Business sustainability initiative. A strategic priority for the college, the initiative’s goal is to bring sustainability issues to the forefront across the areas of teaching, research, outreach, and operations.

“Smeal has been a leader among academic units here at Penn State in answering the University’s call to prioritize sustainability. In 2012, we developed and approved a dedicated Sustainability Strategic Plan for the college,” said Charles H. Whiteman, John and Becky Surma Dean of Smeal. “I’m confident that Terry will help us continue to make great strides toward becoming a more sustainable college.”

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The SC&IS Department Welcomes New Faculty Members

Suresh Muthulingam, assistant professor of supply chain management Muthulingam comes to Smeal from Cornell University’s Samuel Curtis Johnson Graduate School of Management, where he was an assistant professor of operations management. He holds a doctoral degree in decisions, operations, and technology management from the University of California, Los Angeles Anderson School of Management, as well as an MBA from the Indian Institute of Management and a bachelor’s degree from the Indian Institute of Technology.

Lei (Michelle) Wang, assistant professor of information systems Wang earned her doctoral degree in operations and information management from the University of Connecticut’s School of Business. She earned her master’s degree in economics from Xi’an Jiaotong University and her bachelor’s degree in electronic science and technology from Nanjing University of Science and Technology, both in China.

Hansa Sinha, instructor in management and information systems Sinha comes to Smeal from Lock Haven University, where she served as an assistant professor of business and computer science. She holds a doctorate in information sciences in technology and an MBA from Penn State, a master’s in industrial relations from Xavier Labor Relations Institute in India, and a bachelor’s in economics from St. Xavier’s College in India.

Quang “Neo” Bui, visiting assistant professor of management information systems Bui earned his doctoral degree in business with an information systems concentration from Bentley University in Waltham, Massachusetts, in May. He also holds a master’s degree in information system management and a bachelor’s degree in information systems from Brigham Young University.

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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 http://tmis.acm.org/charter.html.

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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Markea Dickinson earns MIT Supply Chain Excellence Award

Markea Dickinson, a graduating senior in the Penn State Smeal College of Business supply chain management major, has earned a Supply Chain Excellence Award from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). Leah Davis and Jesse Swank, also supply chain seniors, earned honorable mention awards. The MIT Supply Chain Excellence Awards are granted to outstanding graduating seniors in Supply Chain here at Penn State as a result of a partnership initiated between the two universities last year. The award grants a tuition scholarship for the student’s use toward the MIT supply chain management master’s degree program.

“This is the second year now that MIT has granted more than one scholarship to our graduating Penn Staters, and that’s a real testament to the kind of quality graduates we produce in our supply chain program,” said Bob Novack, associate professor of business logistics.

Danny Yunes, a Smeal supply chain alumnus and graduate of MIT’s supply chain management program, visited Penn State last month to present Dickinson, Davis and Swank with their awards. Yunes is a manager of supply chain strategy at Coyote Logistics in Chicago.

Applications for the MIT Supply Chain Excellence Award open to supply chain seniors in January. Scholarship recipients are expected to spend two to five years in the workforce before joining the MIT graduate program. The MIT Supply Chain Management Program is a 10-month study program designed for early career supply chain professionals that includes coursework, a company-sponsored project and international travel.

Students Compete in Boeing Competition

The seventh annual Boeing Case Competition took place this week with Bryan Chou, Karoline Rueckerl, Anthony Dong, Alex Madzio, and Marlow Bryant taking first place. This competition provides Supply Chain and other business students an opportunity to apply classroom instruction to real world problems. Teams of four or five students, typically three supply chain and one finance or accounting student, use their knowledge of LEAN concepts to determine an optimal solution to a Boeing problem. Students have Boeing mentors to contact and answer any questions. Senior Boeing executives judge the 20 minute presentations and then drill the teams with a variety of questions. Six teams competed to win prize money provided by Boeing. The kickoff dinner and presentation dinner hosted by Boeing in the Business Building added to the professional experiences for these students.

Smeal Team Places Second at Arkansas International Logistics Case Competition

Smeal’s MBA team had a very successful run at the University of Arkansas International Logistics Case Competition held on April 26, 2014. They beat out teams from Sweden, Ohio State, and Brigham Young to make the finals. In the finals they competed against teams from Germany and Rutgers. The German team (Technical University Darmstadt) won and PSU was second! The judges afterward complimented our team their very “creative” solution. Judges from both the preliminaries and finals noted that our team did the best of any in responding to the judges follow-up questions.

The team consisted of all first year MBAs and all internationals! Twelve teams in total competed. Besides the six schools noted above, Arkansas, Iowa State, Maryland, Minnesota, UT-Dallas, and Wisconsin were also in the competition.

In the past three of these competitions, Penn State MBAs have won 1st place, 3rd place, and 2nd place, respectively.

John Jordan Makes TEDxPSU Video on The Robotic Paradox

Given the recent acceleration in the capabilities of robots -- especially given DARPA research and Google's investments in this field -- it's time to talk seriously about the place of robots in health care, warfare, work, and social interaction. The paradox derives from the role of science fiction in public conceptions of robots: given the work of Isaac Asimov, George Lucas, and others, everyone knows what a (fictional) robot looks like even as engineers and scientists cannot agree on core definitions. Thus it's time to be more conscious of our mental models in this emerging field that will be so important in the coming decades.

John Jordan’s video can be seen at

More information on TEDx programs can be found at

Sue Purdum Conducts Webinar with Students and Faculty in Peru

On April 30, Sue Purdum conducted a live webinar (followed by Q&A) using Blackboard Collaborative for 140 Industrial Engineering and Business Administration students/faculty in Lima, Peru. The event was coordinated by Prof. Edgar Ramos. The host was CSCMP's Peru Roundtable, and the event was held at UPC (Universidad Peruana de Ciencias Aplicadas) Peru University of Applied Science. The title of the webinar was "Supply Chain Leadership: Driving Influence and Business Impact.”

Karen L. Hughes-Quintos Selected as 2014 Distinguished Alumni

Karen L. Hughes-Quintos ’85 Business Logistics has been selected as one of eight Penn Staters to receive Distinguished Alumni Awards for 2014. The Distinguished Alumni Award is the University’s highest award for an individual. Karen is senior vice president and chief marketing officer of Dell Inc, where she leads marketing efforts for corporate and enterprise solutions businesses in the Americas, Asia-Pacific, and Japan, Europe, Middle East, and Africa. She serves as an advisory board member for Catalyst and a board member for the Association of National Advertisers and Susan G. Komen for the Cure.

Quintos also serves on the college’s Board of Visitors and as a member of Smeal’s “For the Future” campaign committee dedicated to supporting the college through philanthropic giving. In addition, she served on a committee dedicated to Smeal’s branding efforts. She resides in Austin, Texas.

Distinguished Alumni are selected annually by the Penn State Board of Trustees. The official awards at a celebration coinciding with Traditional Reunion Weekend, slated for the first weekend in June.

Early Career Professorship Honoring John Coyle Will Support Faculty Recruitment

An anonymous donor has committed a gift of $334,000 to establish the Dr. John Coyle Early Career Professorship in Supply Chain in honor of John Coyle, professor emeritus of business administration and director of corporate sponsors for the Center for Supply Chain Research. With matching funds from the Penn State Faculty Endowment Challenge, the total endowment is worth $500,000.

Early Career Professorships are granted to promising young faculty who have completed their terminal degrees within the last decade. The professorships provide funding to support these faculty in their research and teaching at a critical point in their early careers. “Early Career Professorships are powerful tools for recruiting faculty members with the kind of potential to perform groundbreaking work in their disciplines,” said Charles H. Whiteman, John and Becky Surma Dean of Smeal. “As the field of supply chain continues to grow and evolve, fostering faculty development in this area is more crucial than ever.”

This is the second professorship to be created in honor of Coyle, who has been a member of the Smeal faculty since 1961. In his more than 50 years at the college, Coyle has served in a number of administrative positions in addition to his teaching responsibilities, including department head, assistant dean, senior associate dean, and executive director of the Center for Supply Chain Research. “I am really honored by this special recognition,” said Coyle. “I’m hopeful that the professorship will encourage a young faculty member in supply chain to grow his or her career here at Smeal.”

Coyle taught the first course in business logistics to Smeal students throughout his career, which included delivery on public television, and is best-known for his popular co-authored textbooks. He has received numerous Penn State awards for teaching excellence and advising, including the Lion’s Paw award, for outstanding service to the University, in 2004. Well-known to the supply chain community outside Penn State as well, Coyle has received the Council of Logistics Management’s Distinguished Service Award (1991), the Philadelphia Traffic Club’s Person of the Year Award (2003), and the Eccles Medal from the International Society of Logistics for his contributions to the Department of Defense (2004). Coyle currently serves on the boards of three logistics and supply chain service companies and the advisory board of the National Logistics and Distribution Conference. He also continues to be active in teaching in the Penn State Executive Education programs.

MBA Case Competition and Round Table Focus on Supply Chain

On February 20-21, the Penn State Smeal MBA Program hosted the second and final round of the Deloitte Supply Chain MBA Challenge—a case competition sponsored by Deloitte Consulting LLP. The case was based on a situation at Crocs in the late 2000s after the company’s stock declined. Participating teams were asked to present on how they proposed to cut costs or expand product lines.

“The Deloitte Supply Chain MBA Challenge was a huge success. We had the exciting opportunity to work hand in hand with a number of talented Supply Chain MBA students and senior faculty from some of our target supply chain programs. The students handled changing scenarios and tight timelines very well and developed thoughtful, actionable recommendations that addressed an end-to-end business challenge. The faculty members provided us with good insights on developing supply chain talent. It was clear that they were committed to enhancing their curricula in line with the evolving challenges in industry,” offered members of the Deloitte Consulting Team. They also added, “Penn State provided support by hosting the competition and helping us manage the event. We were very impressed by the performance of all the teams and look forward to further expanding the Deloitte Supply Chain MBA Challenge competition next year.”

Smeal SC&IS Students Participate in APICS Case Competition

The APICS Mid-Atlantic District held the 2014 Regional Supply Chain Case Competition in Pittsburgh, from February 21st to the 22nd. A team of six undergraduate students comprised by Zhi Li, William Belsterling, Jerry Ouyang, Evan Chen, Matthew Mittereder, and Sun Yuen Hui won second place among the 12 participating schools. The competition involved a mixture of graduate and undergraduate teams. The students had only a few hours to develop a strategy for effectively managing reverse logistics for a U.S.-based large appliance manufacturer. Penn State's team finished as runner up, second only to one of the graduate teams. They represented our Department and the University with great pride. Team advisors were Dr. Ralph Sees and Dr. Felisa Preciado.

Solving Industry Challenges an Important Goal for Supply Chain Ph.D. Alumni

Penn State Smeal College of Business doctoral program alumni James Abbey and Kaitlin Wowak are using their supply chain management expertise to improve supply chain practice in industry through research and teaching. Wowak, who earned a doctorate degree in 2012 and is an assistant professor of management at the University of Notre Dame Mendoza College of Business, cited her love of research as one of her primary motivations for pursuing an academic career.

“I enjoy working on issues managers face on a daily basis,” she said. “I am currently doing research on product recalls, which can have major implications on a firm’s financial performance and brand image as well as on consumer well-being.” Abbey, who earned a doctorate degree in 2013 and is an assistant professor at Texas A&M Mays Business School, is focused on closed-loop supply chains — also an area that has significant impact on business. A closed loop supply chain refers to one that incorporates re-use, remanufacturing and recycling of materials used in the production process as well as the product itself.

“Academia and industry can both realize benefits by engaging in partnership if they allocate time and resources towards developing relationships,” said Wowak. “If they drift apart, our research won’t have practical implications and industry won’t receive guidance about how to overcome various challenges.”

Abbey added, “Though the process of working with companies is not always simple, I find the process invigorating and exciting as problems that have never been seen before come to light. That process of discovery makes my work with the companies and related research significantly more enjoyable.”

Both Abbey and Wowak cited Smeal’s focus on research excellence as a primary reason they chose the college for their doctoral studies. They also indicated that the Smeal community played a significant role in their choice.

“I wanted to go to a premier academic institution that allowed a balance between the work environment and community,” said Abbey. “As such, Penn State represented the ideal solution — a fantastic community environment with scholars who are among the best in the field.”

Abbey began his career in health care consulting after earning a bachelor of science degree in economics from Iowa State University. He later returned for a second bachelor of science degree in statistics and master of science degree with a focus in supply chain. Wowak holds a bachelor of science degree in finance from the University of Florida and an master of science degree in information and telecommunication systems for business from Johns Hopkins University.

SC&IS Students Take First Place at Case Competition

An SC&IS case competition team captained by Karoline Rueckerl and including Will Belsterling, Tony Bracrella, Bryan Chou and Matt Mittereder took first place in a competition sponsored by the Chrysler Corporation and hosted by the Buckeye Operations Management Society at Ohio State University on April 4th and 5th. The overnight express case featured decisions about supplier selection, production schedules and addressing quality issues for a Jeep Wrangler "Buzz Model" to be marketed to China. Ohio State University finished Second and Ohio University third. Other participating universities included Michigan State, Western Michigan, Wayne State and Northwestern. Congratulations and well done to Karoline, Will, Tony, Bryan and Matt.

Guide Named Smeal Chair in Supply Chain and Information Systems

V. Daniel R. Guide, a faculty member in the Penn State Smeal College of Business, has been named the Smeal Chair in Supply Chain and Information Systems. Guide joined the Smeal faculty in 2002. His research expertise includes product design and the extended supply chain, design and control of closed-loop supply chains, product returns, remanufacturing, and sustainable operations. He currently serves as co-editor-in-chief of the Journal of Operations Management, and he is also co-departmental editor for sustainable operations at the Production and Operations Management journal. He holds a Ph.D. from the University of Georgia and bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Clemson University.

“My colleagues, my doctoral students, the department, and the college have all helped create an environment where I’ve been able to be successful, and I am very grateful,” said Guide. “I hope to be able to pay it forward and help mentor the next generation; the Smeal Chair provides me with an excellent platform to do just that.”

The college’s Smeal Endowed Chairs are awarded to faculty who excel in scholarship, leadership, and vision. The chairs were established with funds contributed by 1942 Penn State graduates and benefactors Mary Jean and Frank P. Smeal, for whom the college is named.

“Our Smeal Chairs are internationally recognized for their publications, awards, leadership, and the success of their doctoral students,” said Russell Barton, senior associate dean for research and faculty at Smeal. “They contribute critically to the national and international reputation and stature of the Smeal College of Business and, more broadly, Penn State.”

Smeal Chairs in other departments include Steven Huddart in Accounting, Charles Cao in Finance, Donald Hambrick in Management and Organization, and Wayne DeSarbo in Marketing.

Smeal's Supply Chain Education Ranked Highly by Industry Professionals

The Penn State Smeal College of Business was ranked third among universities producing talent in the supply chain field, according to a recent survey of supply chain professionals that appeared in last year’s Chief Supply Chain Officer Report, published by SCM World. The survey was sent to members of SCM World’s global community and other supply chain, procurement, and operations practitioners. Recipients were asked to write in the top three schools they perceived as markers of supply chain talent. The 2013 Chief Supply Chain Officer Report was the fourth annual report published by SCM World, a global community of senior supply chain professionals.

MIS Student Places in National Journalism Competition

Congratulations to Christian Heilman (MIS) on his award in the Hearst Journalism Awards Program, a national journalism competition with 79 entries from all across the country. Christian placed seventh for three feature stories he worked on as a reporter for Centre County Report, the College of Communications’ Emmy-award winning newscast. The stories can be seen at:

More information on the Hearst Journalism Awards Program can be seen at http://hearstfdn.org/hearst_journalism/press_release.php?id=144

Smeal Student Society Honors Bob Novack

The Smeal Student Society has honored Bob Novack by choosing him to be in the Smeal Student Society Spotlight. Stop by the Atrium to see the poster about Bob.

Purdum Moderates Panel on Women in Leadership at Supply Chain Conference

Susan B. Purdum, instructor in supply chain and information systems in the Penn State Smeal College of Business, moderated a panel on women and leadership at the annual Global Conference for Council of Supply Chain Management Professionals (CSCMP). The conference was held at the end of October in Denver, Colo.

Sponsored by Penn State Executive Programs, the panel’s theme, 21st Century Leadership: The Female Quotient, focused on new leadership capabilities needed for what many describe as a networked economy. The panel explored whether or not these new leadership imperatives create unique opportunities for women to advance their careers by making a greater impact at work. Read More

Rankings by SCM World

In the fourth annual Chief Supply Chain Officer Report published by SCM World, The Pennsylvania State University was ranked third for universities/business schools as a marker for supply chain talent. The first and second place rank went to Michigan State University and Massachusetts Institute of Technology, respectively. The survey targeted members of SCM World’s global community and other supply chain, procurement, and operations practitioners resulting in a total of 756 completed responses. The main goal of this research is to “equip our teams with the latest insights and best ideas on how the forces of change impact supply chain strategy.”

Read the Complete Report.

John Jordan Writes Article for Wall Street Journal

John Jordan wrote an article for the Wall Street Journal titled “The Risks of Big Data for Companies: Yes, all that information is great. But are companies prepared for it?” The article speaks about the important discipline of data analytics.

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Donald J. Bowersox Graduate Supply Chain Challenge

On October 25, 2013, a Smeal MBA team of students placed 3rd at the 4th Annual Michigan State University Donald J. Bowersox Graduate Supply Chain Challenge. The MSU Bowersox Graduate Supply Chain Challenge is different from a traditional case competition as the challenge uses a simulated real-time competitive supply chain strategy environment to challenge the MBA students and objectively assess their skills to design and manage a dynamic supply chain against a common scenario. Only the top 15 graduate Supply Chain programs in the country are invited to participate and this year nine schools accepted. The Smeal team consisted of Class of 2014 students Iqbal Aasim, Michael Bassani, Kumar Pushkal, and Ankit Mahajan. David Huff was their advisor.

Global Operations Conference Case Competition

An MBA team of students recently won the 2013 Global Operations Conference Case Competition at the Ross School of Business, University of Michigan, which came with a $5000 prize. The team consisted of Class of 2014 students Iqbal Aasim, David Benton, Andrew Driscoll, and Ankit Mahajan, and Class of 2015 student Tatiana Kuzmenko, with David Huff as their unofficial advisor. On October 25, 2013, they received word that they had advanced to the finals after a preliminary round where several teams from top schools around the country submitted case reports consisting of a PowerPoint presentation and an Executive Summary. Of those submissions where the competition “was fierce,” five teams advanced to the finals. Finalists were given a second part of the case, for which they had to prepare a live presentation of their proposed solution. In addition to competing, all finalist team members were invited guests to the Global Operations Conference. The presentations took place November 14 during the conference with the winners announced at the end of the conference the next day.

Acimovic's Doctoral Dissertation Wins Second Prestigious Award

Jason Acimovic, assistant professor of supply chain management in the Penn State Smeal College of Business, has won the 2013 George B. Dantzig Dissertation Award for his doctoral dissertation, Lowering Outbound Shipping Costs in an Online Retail Environment by Making Better Fulfillment and Replenishment Decisions. Read More

Baker Hughes Donates Scholarship Funds

Building on its continued commitment to Penn State, Baker Hughes is providing funds for two Supply Chain scholarships and for support for Supply Chain student organizations.

Research Paper on Product Recalls Selected for Award

A paper authored by Christopher Craighead, Rothkopf Professor of Supply Chain Management in the Penn State Smeal College of Business, along with colleagues Kaitlin (Dunn) Wowak of the University of Notre Dame and Dave Ketchen of Auburn University, has been selected as the winner of the Decision Sciences Institute (DSI) Best Empirical/Theoretical Paper. Read More

Bob Novack Recognized for Service

Congratulations to Bob Novack on being selected as one to two outstanding associate editors for the Journal of Business Logistics. Criteria for service were number of reviews performed, review cycle time, and quality of the reviews.

Smeal Alumni in Profile: Erwin Finds Excitement in Supply Chain Career

Kelly-Jean Erwin, a 2001 Penn State Smeal College of Business graduate currently with AT&T in Atlanta, didn’t always know she wanted to work in supply chain. But through the course of her education at Smeal, she discovered the field and how exciting it could be. “I wanted to go to school for fashion design,” she said, but her parents encouraged her to give Penn State a shot. Today, she is active in the Penn State Atlanta Alumni Association and works as a senior manager in Sales Program Execution at AT&T Mobility. Read More

Chuck Nicholson Chosen for Homecoming Court

Congratulations to Chuck Nicholson for being chosen as one of eight faculty members on the Penn State Homecoming Court.

Smeal Student Society Honors Felisa Preciado

The Smeal Student Society has honored Felisa Preciado by choosing her to be in the Smeal Student Society Spotlight. Stop by the Atrium to see the poster about Felisa.

Jason Acimovic Receives Supply Chain Dissertation Award

Jason Acimovic has been selected to receive the 2013 Council of Supply Chain Management Professionals (CSCMP) Doctoral Dissertation Award. His dissertation is titled Lowering Outbound Shipping Costs in an Online Retail Environment by Making Better Fulfillment and Replenishment Decisions. Read More

New SC&IS Faculty

The SC&IS Department welcomes the following new faculty members:

Aydin Alptekinoglu – Associate Professor of Supply Chain Management
Alptekinoglu holds a doctorate in management from the Anderson Graduate School of Management at the University of California, Los Angeles. His research interests include product variety management, supply chain management, and pricing.

Heather Lutz – Clinical Assistant Professor of Supply Chain Management
Lutz holds a doctorate in supply chain management from Syracuse University.

Abdou Jallow – Instructor in Management Information Systems
Jallow holds a doctoral degree in engineering informatics and management and has experience in both independent research and business management.

Chuck Nicholson Participates in Externship with Leprino Foods

Dr. Chuck Nicholson, a Clinical Associate Professor of Supply Chain Management, participated in a one-week externship with Leprino Foods Company at the company’s headquarters in Denver, CO during July 2013. Leprino Foods is one of the world’s largest manufacturers of mozzarella cheese and dairy ingredients, with manufacturing facilities throughout the U.S. and a global sales presence. Read More

Faculty Promotions

Congratulations to the following SC&IS faculty on their promotions!

Doug Thomas has been promoted to the rank of professor in the Department of Supply Chain and Information Systems.

John Jordan has been promoted to clinical professor of supply chain and information systems.

Felisa Preciado has been promoted to clinical associate professor of supply chain management.

Faculty Take Part in Inaugural Certified Analytics Professional CAP™ Program

INFORMS announced that the first Certified Analytics Professional CAP™ exam was held in San Antonio on April 7. To quote INFORMS, the “INFORMS analytics certification program is established to advance the use of analytics by setting agreed upon standards for the profession and to advance the analytics profession by providing a means for organizations to identify and develop qualified analytics professionals, by contributing to the career success and continued competence for analytics professionals, and by improving the credibility and visibility of the analytics profession.” A total of 38 professionals were in the inaugural awardee group, including Terry Harrison and Russell Barton. Future dates of the exam are: October 3, 2013, Boston, MA, and October 5, 2013, Minneapolis, MN.

Students Compete in Boeing Competition

The sixth annual Boeing Case Competition took place this spring with Jessica Isenberg, Max Mellott, Meong Kwak, Connor Amice, and Steve Pecora taking first place. This competition provides Supply Chain and other business students an opportunity to apply classroom instruction to real world problems. Teams of four or five students, typically three supply chain and one finance or accounting student, use their knowledge of LEAN concepts to determine an optimal solution to a Boeing problem. Students have Boeing mentors to contact and answer any questions. Senior Boeing executives judge the 15 minute presentations and then drill the teams with a variety of questions. Six teams competed to win $2,000 in prize money provided by Boeing. The kickoff dinner and presentation dinner hosted by Boeing in the Business Building added to the professional experiences for these students.