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The Tauber Institute Celebrates 30 Years of Impact, Looks Forward to the Next 30 Years

Located on the third floor of Kresge Hall, the Tauber Institute for Global Operations will be turning 30 years old in February 2024. The Tauber Institute combines the expertise of Michigan Ross and the University of Michigan College of Engineering to provide students with an action-based curriculum, equipping them with the tools, knowledge, and leadership skills needed to be agile global leaders in any industry or role.

Working together to create impactful projects from students and partners

Tauber staff interviewing Professor Hyun-Soo Anh at SPOTLIGHT! 2023
Tauber staff interviewing Professor Hyun-Soo Ahn at SPOTLIGHT! 2023

Tauber isn’t just a collaboration between two major schools on campus — it is a collaboration between students, faculty, industry partners, and staff, led by Hyun-Soo Ahn, Ford Motor Company Co-Director and professor of technology and operations; Larry Seiford, Goff Smith Co-Director; and Anne Partington, managing director and head of industry partnerships. 

“We collaborate to shape the institute’s strategy, curriculum, partnerships, and student events, fostering a strong community and teamwork among Michigan Ross and Engineering students. We also leverage the collective expertise of both colleges to promote thought leadership, learning, and leadership growth for students with industry partners and faculty support,” said Partington.

Tauber Staff
Tauber Staff

Partington leads an “incredibly creative, talented, and dedicated” team of six staff members who support the student experience, industry partnerships, and marketing goals of Tauber. Together with faculty, the Tauber team partners with global companies, including Boeing, Ford Motor Co., Amazon, Target, and Conagra Brands, to develop sponsored student projects that give students hands-on experience solving pressing, real-world challenges in the operations and global supply chain industry. 

“Today’s business climate demands leaders with critical thinking, creativity, and inclusive community-building skills to tackle complex operational and supply chain challenges. The Tauber Institute cultivates these multidisciplinary leaders,” said Partington.

SPOTLIGHT! 2023

In mid-October, Tauber hosted their annual SPOTLIGHT! 2023 Team Project Showcase and Scholarship Competition capstone event, bringing students, industry partners, faculty, and staff together at the annual competitive presentation. This year, over 200 people were in attendance. The students presented to executive judges from companies around the country. Eighteen teams of students presented the results of their team projects and competed for $40,000 in scholarships. The event included three keynote speakers and awards for longevity to industry sponsors and faculty.

This year’s Tauber student team projects returned a projected savings of $820.3 million in valuable workflow and sustainability improvements. As industry partners continue to work through disruptions to supply chains while undergoing digital transformation and restructuring, Tauber team projects help to identify the specific challenges that industry partners face and deliver long- and short-term solutions that drive measurable value well beyond the duration of the projects. 

Looking forward to the next 30 years

Since its foundation, Tauber has successfully completed over 720 student projects, partnering with over 150 companies around the world. The Institute also boasts a network of more than 1,500 alums. Students have an impressive 98% placement rate at graduation, with the majority having multiple job offers. However, as Tauber approaches its milestone anniversary and reflects on the last 30 years, Partington stresses the importance of planning for the future.

“Supply chain and operations are undergoing a tremendous digital and cultural transformation,” said Partington. “We, here at the institute, recognize that and are conducting a strategic Voice of the Customer research initiative to help inform our next-generation strategy. The goal is to convene industry, students, and faculty to continue to educate world-class leaders, welcome students of all identities, and drive cutting-edge collective thought leadership and learning opportunities to serve complex industry and societal needs.”

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