May 4, 2016 at 1:30pm

Millikin MBA students study efficiencies at Caterpillar

Millikin MBA students

Students in Millikin University's inaugural MBA Fast-Track class have been working at Caterpillar Inc. in Decatur, Ill., for the past seven weeks on projects to make company processes more efficient.

The class is led by instructor John Yotter, a master black belt at the Caterpillar facility. This semester, Yotter has had the students work on Green Belt Projects at the facility specifically on EHS Waste Streams, Right Part Right Time Paint Flow and Cost of Bolts-Engine Change.

The specific course is called Project Management and is the last course of a three-course series Graduate Certificate Program for Project Management. The students can take an examination to become certified Green Belts in Lean 6 Sigma. 

On May 3 the class presented their Gate Reviews (mid project report) at the facility. There are 11 students in the class.

"This is the quintessential win-win-win situation," said Yotter. "The students get real-life work experience, CAT gets a pipeline of potential employees and the community should benefit as well, especially in terms of landfill waste."

Students working on the landfill waste project are Cydney Boyd, Erica Nwachukwu and Dane Pedersen, all from Decatur and Trent Trudeau, from Oreana, Ill.

The team has focused their efforts on cans, plastic bottles, paper and wood, used in packaging many of the parts the plant receives. The challenge is getting employees to do the right thing when disposing waste and the other is the sheer volume of pallets Caterpillar gets.

Other students in the class include: Ben Quigg, from Decatur, Amber Kaylor, from Decatur, Taylor Morthland, from Decatur, Jade Becker, from Decatur, Wes Buhlig from Bluffs, Ill., Megan Leary from Bloomington, Ill., and Torrey Pollard from Decatur.

Millikin University's MBA Fast-Track Program provides a unique experience tailored to the diverse needs of today's ambitious business professionals. The 12-month Fast-Track MBA offers accelerated day classes for recent college graduates. MBA Fast-Track classes are geared toward younger students who want to earn a Master of Business Administration in a year.

"We wanted to reach the younger population and give them a slingshot into the market," said Dr. Anthony Liberatore, director of Millikin's MBA Program. "I think it's been very successful."

Click here to read more about the program in an article from the Herald & Review.