When COVID-19 hit, Zoe Januszewski put her WPI education to work—that is, by quick-thinking, adapting, collaborating, and problem-solving.
The lead lab assistant for BUS3020 (Achieving Effective Operations) quickly shifted the clock factory simulation lab to a virtual teaching climate focusing on lean manufacturing techniques through the Kaizen concept.
“This was a unique way to apply my knowledge and passion for lean manufacturing to a classroom setting that impacted both my school and my peers,” says Januszewski ’22, who is studying for her undergraduate degree in industrial engineering.
She credits her time at WPI for helping her think fast on her feet. “The most prominent impact [of my WPI education] is my ability to adjust to information on the fly,” she says. “The fast-paced, project-based learning has prepared me to be ready for any given scenario.”
While calling WPI a unique, supportive, and diverse campus with great non-curricular opportunities—not to mention the ability to participate in MQPs and IQPs to positively impact communities—Januszewski credits Brent French, executive director of The Business School, for his mentorship. He has coached her to become a better worker, leader, and human, she says.
In addition to her studies, many extracurricular activities, and part-time lab work, the California native is also CEO of Gompei’s Goat Cheese, which began in 2013 as an MQP and is WPI’s only student-run business.
All told, “I have achieved leadership positions that have encouraged me to grow into a more confident and thoughtful leader,” she says.
One of the most valuable things about her WPI education? The “plethora of opportunities” available. And she encourages prospective students to take the extra step to pursue their interests and seize opportunities that come along.
“By taking advantage of the opportunities that excite you, you will catapult yourself into a world of passion, teamwork, and unique communities,” she says. “College is about challenging yourself, so put yourself out there.”
Post-graduation, Januszewski hopes to pursue her passion for lean manufacturing and people by working on process improvement in manufacturing.
“I took a leap of faith coming to WPI,” she acknowledges. “I have lived in a Southern California beach town all of my life, so this was definitely a shift of pace. I am so happy that I made the decision, because it has transformed me into a better version of myself. WPI is such a special school, and it really has changed me for the better. “