Students at Zeeland’s Woodward, Inc. Win Competition

It was a day of discovery at the 19th Annual Spotlight! competition this fall at the Ross School of Business, as 35 Tauber teams made up of MBA, master of Supply Chain Management and College of Engineering students presented the results of their summer projects and competed for more than $30,000 in scholarship awards. The teams, represented by 83 students and 51 faculty at 28 sponsoring companies around the world, worked in sectors including manufacturing and supply chain, health care, energy, technology and logistics to uncover solutions to real-life issues.

Taking top honors was the Woodward, Inc. team of Dot Gregg, MBA ‘13, and Kevin Shallcross, EGL ‘13, who spent their summer in Zeeland, working to leverage process improvement, demand forecasting, and materials planning to reduce the company’s turnaround time for aircraft fuel nozzle repair and overhaul. They received a scholarship award of $5,000 each and were presented with the “check” by Joel Tauber.

Woodward, Inc.’s Aircraft Turbine Systems business group engaged the Tauber team to position its operations to support anticipated growth by reducing turn-around time (TAT) on commercial fuel nozzle repair. The company aims to improve service and to expand its presence in the segment focused on energy solutions for commercial and military aircraft propulsion. The solutions Gregg and Shallcross proposed are expected to reduce average TAT by 73 percent and drive the 95th percentile TAT down from almost four weeks to less than two weeks. In addition, by introducing improved flow, the proposed changes reduce the processing time for a complete engine set of nozzles by 40 percent, balance utilizations, and increase efficiency for CF34-8 and V2500 repairs by 162 percent and 114 percent respectively.

The Tauber Institute for Global Operations is a joint venture between the U-M’s Stephen M. Ross School of Business and the College of Engineering, and many industry partners to facilitate cross-disciplinary education in global operations management. In addition to a broad array of core and elective courses, the innovative LeadershipAdvantageSM Program provides students with the tools to ascend to major operations leadership roles. Well-designed and managed team projects form the cornerstone of the Tauber Institute experience and allow students to apply their knowledge to real world settings.

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