A group of thirty-five students and five faculty members visited the Philips Respironics plant in New Kensington, Pa., on September 29, 2011.
The company designs, makes, and markets medical devices mainly in the respiratory health area. The students were from the Honors junior block of courses (marketing, operations, and finance) and the supply chain management courses.
An excellent panel discussion was arranged at Respironics that included four executives of the company. Thomas Wagner, a senior executive at Respironics and an Eberly Business Advisory Council member, moderated the panel discussion based on the questions supplied by the faculty members teaching the honors courses. The panel participants were Eric Kulikowski, director of Operations; Dave Myers (IUP alumnus), Marketing manager; and John Yarowenko, VP of Finance.
Following the panel discussion and Q&A by faculty and students, the group got a tour of the new manufacturing facilities of Respironics. The plant is less than two years old and practices several aspects of lean manufacturing and total quality management.
"Overall, the experience at Philips Respironics was enriching as it enabled me as student to relate to the topics discussed in class much better,” said Shivani Meher, a student in the MBA–India Program. "It gave me a thorough understanding of how lean management is put into practice."
Drs. Bhagat, Bharadwaj, Chaudhry, Soni, and Taiani accompanied the students.
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