1. Name, academic program/concentration and year in the program
James Hollifield, second year MBA candidate, Supply Chain Management concentration.
2. Prior work experience
Six years operations and project management in the US Coast Guard. Of that six years, I was deployed for two of them on a 225 foot multi-mission ship. We performed a variety of missions including Search and Rescue, Marine Environmental Protection (Deepwater Horizon), Commercial Fisheries Enforcement, and Alien Migrant Interdiction Operations. For the last four years I was an operations manager in Portsmouth, VA where I supervised operations from 18 field units (over 200 personnel) to ensure operational excellence and regulatory/administrative compliance from the Coast Guard's Aids to Navigation program. In that program we ensured federal waterways were accurately and safely marked using buoys and other aids to navigation for recreational and professional mariners.
3. Why did you select the NC State Jenkins MBA program?
I chose North Carolina State University because of their fantastic reputation in the Supply Chain Management specialty.
4. Why did you select the supply chain management concentration; how does it align with your career goals?
Though I have minimal experience in the field of supply chain management, I've always felt it would be a discipline worth pursuing for 3 reasons: 1. I enjoy managing and leading business processes and people, 2. I have a particular interest in data analytics and I enjoy leveraging data in continuous process improvement initiatives, and 3. I love being a part of the operation and "getting my hands dirty".
5. What did you gain from prior experience as an SCRC Scholar?
Last year I gained extensive knowledge in a variety of supply chain operations, particularly inventory management. Working with a partner company and helping them to solve real-world problems has been a very rewarding experience that has spring-boarded my transition into the supply chain field.
6. What would you say to a prospective MBA student or an MBA student considering involvement with the SCRC?
There are many perks to being a SCRC scholar, but by far the biggest benefit is working with the SCRC's partner companies. As a scholar, starting day one as a student you are building your network, showing your worth, gaining valuable skills, and activity searching for prospective job opportunities. All thanks to the SCRC.
7. Where did you intern this summer? Did it align with your supply chain education (if so, how)?
My summer internship was at Red Hat, a computer software company. While the supply chain discipline may not seem applicable in this industry, I actually applied my skills in business process reegineering gained from NC State's supply chain curriculum to help Red Hat identify and eliminate redundancies and inefficiencies in their service operations.