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“I like that a lot of students don’t know what supply chain means; I like when the light bulb goes off,” Whipple says. “They say things like, ‘I’ll never shop at a store or order online and not think about how the product was made and how it gets there.’ What we’re teaching is real-world relevant, and I really enjoy that.”

Judy Whipple

Professor of Supply Chain Management

Many students attend Broad for its world-leading Supply Chain Management Professor Department; others decide to explore the field after enrolling. They all encounter Professor Judy Whipple, who teaches Introduction to Supply Chain Management for the MBA students.

“I like that a lot of students don’t know what supply chain means; I like when the light bulb goes off,” Whipple says. “They say things like, ‘I’ll never shop at a store or order online and not think about how the product was made and how it gets there.’ What we’re teaching is real-world relevant, and I really enjoy that.”

Whipple’s love of teaching has been widely noticed. In 2005 she won the MSU Teacher Scholar award, a university-wide award for excellence in teaching and research. Two years later, the Supply Chain Management Association named her its Teacher of the Year.

Whipple’s scholarly work earns accolades as well. She’s won two Best Paper awards from the Journal of Business Logistics, and another from the Journal of Operations Management.

Whipple started her career working in procurement for General Motors. She decided to pursue her Ph.D. at MSU in order to advance in the purchasing field. During her first year in the doctoral program she had the opportunity to teach, and decided the classroom was where she belonged.

Whipple joined the MSU faculty in 1998 as the director of the university’s Food Industry Management Program. In 2006, she joined the Supply Chain Department.

“Being in the Supply Chain program was a real goal for me, in part due to its ranking and in part to pay forward the mentoring I got as a student in the department,” Whipple says. “I really liked the culture and the applied-research focus – research that helped companies solve problems – and I liked the close mentoring with students.

“The culture at MSU, from students to faculty, is a hard-working, dig-deep culture,” she adds. “We also have a very well rounded program regardless of major. You’re going to come out being able to speak the language of a company, whether you’re meeting with a CFO, a CIO or a COO. You’ll have had courses to understand that functional area, no matter where you are in the company. Companies no longer want people moving up in own function. They want people integrated across the firm.”


Eli Broad College of Business

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