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        Graduate Programs, Supply Chain Management

        Supply Chain graduate program designed to accelerate careers into managerial roles

        April 7, 2021 By Joe McAdory

        All News



        "Our students will not only receive a real-world understanding of what a particular job is, or how to manage that job, they will be providing a service to these companies as well. They will improve a business’ ability to perform and hire more people."                                                                                                             — Dr. Glenn Richey, Department of Supply Chain Management Chair

        From purchasing exercise equipment on Amazon to ordering food and household goods online from your nearby grocery store, the supply chain is openly recognized as an integral part of our daily lives. Amplified by COVID-19, retailers have adjusted to providing safer, touchless e-commerce shopping experiences. But this massive health disruption also exposed a need for talent.

        sclogo“Every major company out there has a supply chain manager and more companies are realizing that they need to have more emphasis in this area,” said Glenn Richey, Harbert Eminent Scholar and Chair of Harbert College’s Supply Chain Management Department. “Companies – and especially C-level senior executives – have noticed the importance of managing the supply chain, and we are in the business of preparing students to fill these important roles.”

        Rafay Ishfaq, Associate Professor of Supply Chain Management and the department’s Graduate Programs Coordinator, believes events such as COVID-19 “make us realize the complexity of modern supply chains.”

        “This complexity requires professionals to strategize, plan and execute supply chains and deliver basic necessities of life to people,” he added. “The supply challenges during the pandemic have increased public awareness of supply chain management to a level where a common person now understands its importance and value. The promise of delivering products and services for the common good of society links directly to high-quality supply chain management education and training.”

        Harbert College’s new Supply Chain Management graduate program, to be offered in-person and remote (via distance education) beginning this fall, is geared toward supply chain professionals looking to accelerate their careers into senior-level management roles.

        sc managerProfessor Richey expects the industry to elevate services, quality of products, and expedience in customer fulfillment, while also finding measures to reduce costs. The college’s graduate program will provide a holistic supply chain management education.

        “We’ll be dealing with issues in transportation, purchasing, and global sourcing,” he said. “We’ve added classes that will look specifically at inventory management, facilities and distribution center management.

        “Our students will not only receive a real-world understanding of what a particular job is, or how to manage that job, they will be providing a service to these companies as well. They will improve a business’ ability to perform and hire more people.”

        Whereas undergraduate supply chain management education is about the principles of the discipline, Harbert College’s Graduate Program in Supply Chain Management is built around teaching the nuances and complexities of implementing, planning, and strategizing growth within supply chains.

        “Graduate education exposes students to complexities facing senior-level managers that go beyond the daily grind of running your company,” Ishfaq added. “It’s about strategizing, planning and getting a feel for how you would handle a potential challenge – not just for today’s supply chain but for future supply chains, as well.”

        The 30-credit hour curriculum covers topics including:

        • Supply Chain Planning
        • Inventory/Warehouse Management
        • Quality and Process Improvement
        • Supply Management and Manufacturing
        • Demand Management and Fulfillment
        • Supply Chain Strategy
        • Quantitative Decision Making
        • Operational Excellence
        • Project Management
        • Integrating Business Processes with Enterprise Resource Planning

        sc3“One of the reasons we are able to compose a curriculum that spans such breadth is because of the Auburn University supply chain management faculty,” Ishfaq added. “We have a group of supply chain management scholars at Auburn who are well-connected in the industry, they understand current best practices, they keep a keen eye on what's happening in the field, and research cutting-edge solutions to handle the challenges faced by supply chain professionals. Our faculty has the depth and breadth to cover all necessary components of contemporary supply chain education.”

        Harbert College is no stranger to supply chain management education at the graduate level. Even before the MS in Supply Chain Management was approved, the college offered a graduate certificate in supply chain management -- ranked No. 23 nationally by U.S. News & World Report.

        For more information about pursuing a Master of Science or certificate from Harbert College’s graduate program in Supply Chain Management, visit here.