Category Archives: Industrial and Systems Engineering

Spring Break in San Diego with RLI

Kevin White

Kevin White,
Senior, Industrial & Systems Engineering

Athens, OH 14 March 2017

My last Spring Break as a college student was definitely the best one. This fall, I was a member of the Robe Leadership Institute. This was a course that focused on building leadership skills to a small group Russ College seniors.

To conclude the course, we were fortunate enough to have to opportunity to take a trip out to San Diego, CA to meet with various CEOs while they give us a tour of their companies.

This trip could not have been possible without Russ College alumnus, Dan Squiller. Dan arranged for us to meet with these CEOs throughout the week.

It was so fascinating to hear the CEOs’ stories and career paths. After going a semester learning about leadership, it was so beneficial to see it in action. These CEOs are very successful and they told us their keys to becoming successful.

If you told me at the beginning of my freshman year that I would be spending my Spring Break meeting 6 CEO’s while allowing me to pick their brain, I would have called you crazy. This was honestly a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity and I would like to think I took full advantage of it.

My favorite company that we saw was HM Electronics Inc. This company designs and manufactures the headsets that you see in fast food restaurants such as McDonalds and Starbucks. They also deal with many other electronic solutions in their market.

RLI in San Diego

Their CEO is Chuck Miyahira. Chuck gave us some great insight on how to succeed both early and later in our careers. Joining Robe Leadership Institute was one of the best decisions of my college career and I will take so much away with me as I begin my full-time job in June.

Spring Co-op at Eaton Corp

Alexa Hoynacke

Alexa Hoynacke,
Senior, Industrial & Systems Engineering

Athens, OH 6 March 2017

For the spring semester I decide to co-op with Eaton Corporation. This is my second rotation with Eaton and the plan is to continue working with Eaton and complete a third rotation this summer.

For this rotation I requested to be in Ashville, North Carolina. Asheville is one of Eaton’s electrical sector plants. This plant is close to 2.2 million square feet and has around 800 employees. It is a similar environment to my first rotation. Here I am working in the medium voltage drives department, and I’m completing projects in design, supply chain, and manufacturing/operations. I have been fortunate enough to work at a large plant where I can decide my own projects and work in various departments.

I would recommend that everyone does some sort of internship, co-op, or research while at OU. Until this past summer I did not plan on doing a co-op. I had already done two years as a research intern and completed one summer internship. I felt that my resume showed a lot of experience across different fields from those experiences and involvement on campus. However, I have found that doing a co-op has taught me a lot, and I do not regret taking the semester to work.

Moving to Asheville was a completely new experience. I have never lived outside of Ohio so the move was exciting and a culture change. When doing a co-op, everything is fast-paced: finding an apartment quickly, meeting new coworkers and friends, and exploring the new area in just 4 months.

While in Asheville I have been able to meet other interns and connect with fellow Bobcats that relocated here. I live in the Blue Ridge Mountains, near the Smoky Mountains, and along the Appalachian trail. The picture below was taken on one of the 6,000 footers that are along the Appalachian Trail.

Appalachian Trail

My biggest take-away from doing internships is that it’s not about how much you know before, but if you know how to learn. You may not use every formula you study in your classes, but you learn how to learn and problem solve.

Hosting the IISE Regional Conference

Joshua Igwe

Joshua Igwe,
Senior, Industrial & Systems Engineering

Athens, OH 2 March 2017

Last weekend, Ohio University hosted the Great Lakes Regional Conference for IISE (the Institute of Industrial and Systems Engineers), the professional organization for Industrial and Systems Engineering majors.

Each spring, there is a conference hosted by one of the schools within each region. Ohio University is in the Great Lakes Region, which includes Michigan, Ohio, Kentucky, and Indiana.

About 400 students gathered in Athens for a two days of networking, listening to speakers, and exploring the possibilities within the professional world.

The theme of this year’s conference was “Finding the IE in relief”. We explored how industrial engineering tools and skills can be used within humanitarian relief situations.

One of the professors in the Russ College Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering specializes in humanitarian logistics. He was the first speaker on Saturday morning. He discussed how his experience with natural disasters in Chile lead him to begin his studies in humanitarian logistics.

Later Saturday, there was a time to converse with a few recent graduates from the major who recently began working full-time. It was nice hearing their perspective, as I am going to be graduating later this spring. There were a few other break-out sessions and key-note speakers throughout the rest of the day.

I really enjoyed this conference as it helped expand my perspective of Industrial and Systems Engineering and presented an opportunity to network with students from different schools.

Intramural Basketball

Joshua Igwe

Joshua Igwe,
Senior, Industrial & Systems Engineering

Athens, OH 29 January 2017

One of my favorite things about the winter time is basketball. Football season is wrapping up around this time and hoops take center stage for a while. I’ve enjoyed playing basketball for as long as I can remember. I wasn’t quite good enough to play in college, but like most schools, Ohio University offers an opportunity for students to play and compete against fellow Bobcats via
intramural leagues
. Unfortunately, because of my busy schedule last year I was unable to play. However, this year I am excited to compete on the court for the last time at Ohio University. I was added to a team of a group of friends from various areas of study, some engineers, some sports management, some business, and some coaching.

Our first game was a good test to see where we would stack up in the league. There are two types of intramural leagues: competitive and noncompetitive. Our team decided to sign up for the competitive league so we expected to be put to the test.

The beginning of the game started slow with each team struggling to score points, but things picked up midway through the first half. At half time, we were up by one point. Once the second half began, we were beginning to get into a rhythm. Shots were falling and with about ten minutes left we had captured a 15-point lead. About this time, we started to get complacent and let the other team back into the game. However, we held off the attempted come-back and capture a three-point win.

Our team has some things we can improve but I am excited to play the rest of the season and will enjoy the weekly break from engineering work.

Moving to Pittsburgh

Kevin White

Kevin White,
Senior, Industrial & Systems Engineering

Athens, OH 26 January 2017

Over Winter break, I got the phone call that I will remember for the rest of my life. I was offered a full-time Industrial Engineer position with FedEx Ground in Pittsburgh, PA…and I accepted the position. I interned with FedEx Ground for the last 3 summers and I loved every second of my experiences. Working there full-time is such an amazing opportunity and I can’t wait to get started.

Working in Pittsburgh full-time means that I am going to move to Pittsburgh, which has always been a lifetime goal of mine. Shortly after accepting the job offer, my mom and I took a whole day and toured about 10 apartments around the area for me to live in. As an engineering major, of course I had my clipboard with me for every apartment and was being way too analytical when it came to the square footage and the pricing. I want to be close to work and close to downtown, so finding a perfectly located apartment was a challenge.

At the end of the day, I sat down and evaluated my top 3 apartments and now am waiting to send in an application. This was an eye-opening experience for me because I saw all of these costs that I am going to be responsible for while entering the real world. As I graduate in April, I will now be transitioning into the next chapter of my life and I am very excited. It has been a great 4 years at Ohio University and the relationships that I have built with the students and faculty here will last a lifetime.

Planning a Chik-fil-A for Athens

Joshua Igwe

Joshua Igwe,
Senior, Industrial & Systems Engineering

Athens, OH 27 November 2016

This semester in one of my ISE classes, Project Management, myself and a few other students decided to do a project studying what it would take to open a Chick-fil-A restaurant in Athens.

Project Management is a class required for all seniors to take in the fall before we begin our senior design project in the spring. Naturally our department wants us to understand how to manage a project from start to finish before we are given our final capstone project.

Chick-fil-A is my favorite fast-food restaurant and I’ve always wondered why we don’t have one in Athens. I figured it would be a fun thing to study in case I wanted to come back to Athens someday to be a franchise owner.

Soon after we began research we found that all that you truly need to open a Chick-fil-A franchise is $5,000 for franchising and a free year to manage the restaurant. The catch however is that Chick-Fil A accepts less than 0.1% of the applications they receive every year. This realization put a damper on my dream of opening a franchise in real life, but the work on the class project had just begun.

Through the planning of the rest of the project, we went through and picked out a location for the franchise, cost for renovations and supplies along with how we planned to staff the restaurant once opened. After gathering the information, planning each task and developing a report, we presented our findings to the class.

This process was helpful as we learned about opening a restaurant and managing a project from start to finish. I expect that this experience will be helpful when we begin working on our senior design project next semester.

Participating in the Robe Leadership Institute

Kevin White

Kevin White,
Senior, Industrial & Systems Engineering

Athens, OH 29 October 2016

This semester, I have had the amazing opportunity to be selected into the Robe Leadership Institute. The purpose of RLI is to supply a group of selected graduating seniors in the Russ College (all engineering and technology majors) with leadership insight and techniques. Dr. Bayless (Mechanical Engineering Professor) facilitates and teaches this course.

Throughout the semester, we have successful Ohio University grads come in and speak to us about their leadership experiences and career advice. As a student, this is an incredible experience that most students don’t get. I am making sure to take advantage and to ask the speakers every question I can. To hear about a successful person’s career path, accomplishments, and failures and to ask them how they utilized different leadership techniques has been a great experience for me, as I approach graduation in May.

Also, I admire how excited the speakers are to give back to Ohio University Russ College students. An added bonus to this course is a trip to San Diego for Spring Break to further expand our leadership.

At the beginning of the course, our professor had us participate in a Challenge Course at the Ridges.

Challenge Course

The purpose of this event is to have our whole class participate in problem-solving activities. By doing these activities, I found out more about my peers in the class and their leadership techniques. I am excited to see how all of us make a transition as leaders by the end of the semester. I am so excited that I have decided to take this course and transition into a great leader in what ever I do.