2019-20 Interdisciplinary Business with Engineering Studies Newsletter

In This Issue:

New Things Going on in the Major

The Interdisciplinary Business with Engineering Studies major continues to grow. We again will have two sections in 2020-21. The graduates continue at or near 100 percent employment at interesting and varied jobs. Many of the graduates obtain dual degrees in either PSCM or Finance. The graduating seniors will present to their sponsors at the end of the term. Some are pursuing a Master of Manufacturing Management while others are pursuing the Master of Project Management. We also are working on adding some new modules—some have been approved, and others will be presented to the schools’ curriculum committees. As an update, Dr. Yohannes Haile, assistant teaching professor of management, and Gary R. Smith, lecturer in management, are also advisers for IBE. Dr. Jeff Vaitekunas, assistant teaching professor of engineering, and Randy Brown, lecturer in management, are teaching the capstone course.

Faculty Spotlight

Gary R. Smith, Lecturer in Management

What is the most fun you've had in your career?

Let me separate my answer into two responses. During my years in industry, I had the most fun working as a Lean Leader for GE. I developed and delivered lean training throughout the corporation, working on process improvement projects, also known as lean transformation, and working with an internationally known lean consulting group in four countries. Most importantly, we saw our collective efforts make a real positive difference.

Here at Penn State Behrend, this academic year has been the most fun as we wrote and delivered a new Global Logistics course and completed the courseware development to convert the Manufacturing and Supply Chain Strategy (MMM 582) course to an online hybrid course. I am teaching it in this mode for the first time this semester, and the course has exceeded expectations.

What’s the proudest moment of your career?

In both of my “lives,” I have been the proudest seeing those who I have helped, mentored, and/or taught be successful. And it repeats itself every time I attend commencement and get to see my former students walk across the stage and receive their diploma from Penn State. It fills me with pride and satisfaction.

Alumni Spotlight

Larry Voss ’19

Larry Voss

Larry works for TechnipFMC as a product quality engineer. His responsibilities include resolving manufacturing issues, leading improvement projects, and developing/reporting quality metrics.

What is one of the most interesting or unique aspects of your job?

Each day I’m involved in troubleshooting mechanical assemblies, flow measurement issues, electronic products, and various process breakdowns. Facing these challenges not only helps to keep the job interesting, but ensures that I continue to pick up skills that I’ll use throughout my career.

What came as the biggest surprise to you at your first post-Behrend job?

The biggest surprise to me was the importance of communication. Whether it be via emails, one-on-one conversations, or presentations to large groups, those who can confidently and effectively communicate will immediately stand out. How you interact with others will directly impact your success!

Student Spotlight

Tyler Clemens ’21

Tyler Clemens

Tyler is an IBE and Finance major and has been involved in the National Organization for Business and Engineering (NOBE) Club, Lion Ambassadors, and Residence Life. He has interned at Cochran Hyundai of Monroeville, Solutions Management- Management Science Associates, and PHB. He looks forward to working as an operations intern at Wabtec in summer 2020.

What’s the best piece of advice you have received at Behrend?

The best piece of advice I’ve received was to “feed the positive wolf.” You have to feed that positive energy into you in order to receive the outcome you desire. If you’re always negative, then you won’t get anything done, and you won’t be able to see the opportunities in front of you.

Club Updates and More

The National Organization for Business and Engineering (NOBE) allows business and engineering majors to communicate, work together, and learn from each other. This club started the year off by making an appearance at the Club Showcase in the Reed Union Building. This effort helped attract new recruits to the club. The first club meeting, held on February 3, highlighted what NOBE Club is about and discussed some planned activities for the upcoming semesters.

On March 2, NOBE hosted two speakers from TechnipFMC. In April, the E-board will be ordering NOBE merchandise for club members. In upcoming semesters, NOBE would like to plan a facility tour of a manufacturing company, compete in the NOBE National Case Competition, and create a Business and Engineering Day during the fall 2020 semester.