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ISyE NEWS :The Industrial & Systems Engineering Department Newsletter


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Celebrating 25 years of quality research

New computational models for decisio n support

QRM Center partners with Phoenix Products

ISyE Industrial Advisory Board

E-business alliance with Wisconsin manufacturers

Beyond the classroom: Teah Gant

Beyond the classroom: William Hochschild

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Message from the Chair

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UW-Madison IIE chapter hosts 2010 regional conference

CQPI researchers and students celebrate the center's anniversary at an event on April 30, 2010.

UW-Madison IIE chapter hosts 2010 regional conference

While on a bus headed to an Institute of Industrial Engineers (IIE) conference in 2008, students Kyle Brown and Matthew Kopetsky, then president of the UW-Madison IIE chapter, tossed around the idea of volunteering to plan the 2010 conference. Nervous but confident in the ability of their members to come together, the pair took the plunge and committed to hosting.

Almost 720 days and countless hours of preparation later, Kopetsky and Brown were right: The team of 14 ISyE students who planned the conference — dubbing themselves the “dream team” — hosted a successful and memorable regional conference attended by 191 students and faculty from 10 Midwest universities, as well as IIE alumni and sponsors.

Held February 18-21, 2010, at the Concourse Hotel in Madison, the conference included interactive workshops that the student team closely designed with presenters and sponsors. Tom Best (BS ’06, MS ’07) led a particularly successful workshop by preparing an extensive hospital case study for students to practice tackling operations problems and priorities.

The team also lined up several social events for the conference attendees, including an industrial engineering trivia contest, gift certificates to various State Street businesses and even a pig roast at the Essen Haus. “One of our goals was to share not only industrial engineering knowledge, but our city’s culture and what it’s like to be a student here,” says Kopetsky, now a graduate student.

The UW-Madison IIE chapter is very active with around 100 student members and a robust community of IIE alumni who stay involved with the campus chapter. UW-Madison holds regional IIE conferences fairly regularly — the chapter last hosted in 2004 — and the students say they are consistently asked to plan the event again.

The economic recession took hold while the team was fund-raising for the event, but the students were still able to raise more than $15,500 from a variety of industry partners.

Along with their sponsors, the team also credits the ISyE faculty for the success of this year’s conference. Professor Raj Veeramani advised the students throughout the planning process, and Associate Professor Jeffrey Linderoth served as a technical paper competition judge. Professors Patricia Flatley Brennan, John D. Lee and Leyuan Shi, along with Associate Professors Ben-Tzion Karsh and Ananth Krishnamurthy, gave presentations about their research at the conference.

“Overall, it feels just awesome to know that we planned an event that not only bettered our chapter but brought our department together as a whole by sparking increased interaction between our students and faculty,” says Kopetsky.

“Ultimately, Kyle and I hope we inspired all of the people who attended to be as passionate about IIE as we are. You don’t devote two years to this if you don’t really value the organization as part of your college education.”

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Date last modified: Monday, 20-September-2010
Date created: 14-September-2010



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