WMU News

Business student earns prestigious national award

May 10, 2005

KALAMAZOO--A senior at Western Michigan University has been awarded a prestigious R. Gene Richter Scholarship, named for a leading force in the supply chain management profession.

Andrea Brown of Waterford, Mich., is one of six students nationwide to receive the honor for 2005. Brown is an integrated supply matrix management--ISM2--major in WMU's Haworth College of Business and is scheduled to graduate this coming December.

The Richter Scholarship program was established to develop high-potential undergraduate students into tomorrow's procurement leaders. Its goal is to fast-track participants into the procurement professions. It is named for a longtime procurement professional whose award-winning career included top-level positions with Ford Motor Co., Black & Decker, Hewlett Packard and IBM.

This year's scholarship winners will receive $5,000 in tuition assistance for 2005-06 and be eligible for mentoring programs and sponsorship at industry conferences, such as the Institute for Supply Management's Annual International Supply Management Conference held in early May. One year after graduation, they also will be invited to attend the annual ISM Power Conference, an exclusive, by-invitation-only gathering for chief procurement officers from across the country.

Richter Scholars are selected based on academic achievement, high ethical standards and leadership potential from some of America's top-accredited university supply chain management programs. The 2005 finalists represented WMU and such institutions as Arizona State University, Michigan State University, Penn State University and the University of Maryland.

"Not only does this scholarship allow me to stay one more semester at WMU, but the mentoring program will be an excellent networking opportunity," Brown says. "Many of the mentors in the program are CPOs of successful companies."

Dr. Bret Wagner, director of WMU's ISM2 program, says Brown is particularly deserving of a Richter Scholarship. "Andrea has really taken advantage of the opportunities available at WMU and in the ISM2 program. She has excelled in her course work, studied abroad and worked in a number of internships with major corporations."

During her career at the University, Brown has interned at Johnson Controls, BorgWarner Automotive, Whirlpool Corp. and DiamlerChrysler. She also has earned numerous honors as well as been active in several professional development and community service activities.

Brown was named ISM2 Student of the Year in 2003 and a Presidential Scholar, WMU's highest honor for a senior, in ISM2 for 2005. She has appeared regularly on the University's Dean lists and was named to the National Dean's List in fall 2002.

After graduating, she says she hopes to work for a corporation that is on the forefront of innovation and uses all of the philosophies and ideas that drive efficiency, quality and productivity.

"In addition," she says, "I would like to work for a company that is looking forward into the global horizon, expanding its frontier onto other continents through strategic and collaborative relationships with its suppliers."

For more information about Brown and WMU's ISM2 program, visit the Web at ism.hcob.wmich.edu or contact Dr. Bret Wagner at (269) 387-5222 or bret.wagner@wmich.edu. More information about the Richter Scholarship program is available online at www.richterfoundation.org.

Media contact: Jeanne Baron, 269 387-8400, jeanne.baron@wmich.edu

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