University of Wisconsin Madison College of Engineering
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The Manufacturing Systems Engineering Program is located in the North Student Services Center, room 3182 of the Mechanical Engineering Building at the end of Engineering Drive.




Please park in Lot 17. [ UW-Madison campus map ]




A Tradition of Excellence


Founded in 1983, the Manufacturing Systems Engineering program at the University of Wisconsin-Madison (UW) was the first program of its kind in the United States. The early innovative interdisciplinary focus on systems aspects in manufacturing and other industries has made the program into an international leader in production systems education and research. The program's excellent reputation is reflected in the consistent top positions of the College of Engineering and the School of Business in the annual rankings of the US News and World Report.


The MSE program can trace its roots to the UW College of Engineering's strong commitment to manufacturing education and research since World War II. By the beginning of the 1980's, as manufacturing technologies and practices took major strides forward, and the need for improved education in manufacturing became increasingly urgent, UW relied on its traditional strength to introduce a new master's degree in the field. The new master's program, established by Professor John Bollinger, Dean of the College of Engineering and a committee headed by Professor Marvin F. DeVries, embraced the new systems approach to manufacturing and addressed a need unmet by academic institutions across the country.


Under the outstanding leadership of former directors, Professors Marvin F. DeVries and Rajan Suri, the MSE Program received international acclaim and won several awards, most significantly the prestigious LEAD University Award (for Leadership and Excellence in Application and Development of CIM Curricula) from the Society of Manufacturing Engineers (SME). Many companies have supported the MSE Program through grants and equipment gifts, including IBM, Rockwell International, General Electric, Hewlett Packard and General Motors.


The groundbreaking combination of a solid technical foundation with managerial aspects in a flexible, practice-oriented framework are the key ingredients for the success of the program up until today. In 2008, Professor Ananth Krishnamurthy, an MSE alumnus himself, took over as the new director of the MSE program, continuing a 25 year long tradition of excellence in manufacturing systems education and research.


Past directors


Ananth Krishnamurthy


Ananth Krishnamurthy assumed leadership of the Manufacturing Systems Engineering program in January 2008. An alumnus of the MSE program himself, he returned to UW-Madison after leaving his previous position of Assistant Professor at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Troy, N.Y. His teaching and research interests are in the area of lead time reduction and quick response manufacturing, performance analysis of manufacturing systems and supply chains, queuing theory and stochastic models, and optimization and simulation.


Professor Krishnamurthy serves as Associate Professor of Industrial Engineering and as Director of the Center for Quick Response Manufacturing (QRM), a consortium of over 50 companies working with the University on understanding and implementing QRM strategies.


Professor Krishnamurthy holds a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology in Mumbai, India and M.S. in Manufacturing Systems Engineering from UW-Madison. He earned his Ph.D. in Industrial Engineering from the University of Wisconsin-Madison under the guidance of Prof. Rajan Suri, a past director of the MSE program and founder of the concept and methodology of Quick Response Manufacturing. At Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Krishnamurthy was named winner of the institution's Engineering Excellence in Education Award for 2007.


Rajan Suri


Rajan Suri served as Director of the MSE Program from 1992 through 2007. Under his leadership the core curriculum was strengthened, the popular MSE Program Guide was introduced, and the MSE website was created – among the first published web sites for any graduate program at the UW. Professor Suri was instrumental in formalizing the MSE Capstone Course and increasing industry partnerships. Building on these partnerships, he founded the Center for Quick Response Manufacturing (QRM) in 1993, and he served as its Director through 2007. During this period over 250 companies partnered with the MSE Program and the QRM Center.


Dr. Suri received his Bachelors degree from Cambridge University (England) in 1974, and his M.S. and Ph.D. from Harvard University in 1978. He joined the UW in 1985 and was Professor of Industrial Engineering from 1989 to 2007. He is author of the book Quick Response Manufacturing: A Companywide Approach to Reducing Lead Times, and served as Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Manufacturing Systems for five years. Dr. Suri has also consulted for leading firms in the U.S. and around the world.


In 1994 Dr. Suri received the IEEE Control Systems Technology Award for the development and implementation of manufacturing planning software. He was made a Fellow of the Society of Manufacturing Engineers (SME) in 1999, and in 2006 he received SME’s Albert M. Sargent Progress Award for the creation and implementation of the QRM philosophy. Dr. Suri retired in 2008 and continues his connection with UW as an Emeritus Professor.


Marvin F. DeVries


Marvin F. DeVries was instrumental in the creation of the Manufacturing Systems Engineering program at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and served as its first director from 1983 to 1992. Under his guidance, the program received the 1988 University LEAD award from the Computer and Automated Systems Association of the Society of Manufacturing Engineers. The program has also received recognition as a University of Wisconsin Center of Excellence.


DeVries, a registered professional engineer and a certified manufacturing engineer, has served as president and director of the Society for Manufacturing Engineers. He was the 1999/2000 President of the International Academy of Production Engineering (CIRP), and is a Life Fellow of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers, a Fellow of the Institute of Production Engineers, and the Society of Manufacturing Engineers and an Honorary Fellow of CIRP. From 1987-90 he worked at the NSF as senior program director for manufacturing processes and equipment. From 1991-95 he served as the chair of the mechanical engineering department.


Professor DeVries retired from the mechanical engineering department in 2005. His teaching and research work had focused on material removal processes and computer-aided manufacturing.