For 130 years, WPI, known for its world-class technological curriculum, has been preparing students to work at the leading edge of engineering and manufacturing technology. But in today's rapidly changing global business climate, technical knowledge is no longer enough.
"Many of today's engineering and manufacturing professionals don't have the management skills they need to succeed," says Ronald Baird, director of corporate relations at WPI. "In the 1990s, manufacturing professionals need to know more about business tha n ever before. They need to know about just-in-time manufacturing, cost and cost accounting, asset management, labor and labor law, organizational behavior and managing people."
To help WPI meet the demands of preparing engineering and manufacturing professionals for the realities of today's business world, Xerox Corporation recently awarded the Institute $60,000 to create the Xerox/WPI Graduate Management Fellowship Program. Xer ox/WPI fellows will receive full tuition, will complete a summer internship at a Xerox manufacturing site, and will have the option of carrying out a thesis project in a subject of special interest to Xerox.
According to Norman Wilkinson, director of graduate management programs at WPI and the director of the new fellowship program, applicants must be U.S. citizens, hold a B.S. degree in an engineering discipline, and be accepted as a full-time student into o ne of WPI's three graduate management programs - a technically oriented M.B.A. program, the Master of Science in Management program or the Master of Science in Manufacturing Management program. Preference will be given to qualified minority candidates. In fact, Wilkinson says, recruitment is now taking place at Asian, Hispanic, African-American and Native American (AHANA)-sponsored events and at the National Hispanic Institute Graduate Consortium.
"The Xerox/WPI fellowship program will benefit WPI and Xerox," Wilkinson says. "It will give our students access to Xerox and give Xerox access to the quality of our management programs. It will also allow Xerox to use the Institute as a training ground f or future management hires."
"This program will help WPI attract the very best students," Baird says. "It will increase the pipeline of students who have the unique combination of engineering and manufacturing expertise and a business education. Through its participation in this p rogram, Xerox will help enhance the education WPI can provide by offering students practical experience in a real-world setting."
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