By Jeff Murphy, November 5, 2019
University of Central Missouri faculty members and students in the Master of Science in Industrial Management program will present their research at the Association for Technology Management and Applied Engineering National Conference Nov. 6-8. Presenters are left to right, Mshari Alshrari, Arjun Jayakrishnan, Joleen Byerline, Suhansa Rodchua, Robert Miner, Ahmed Aldakroury, and Olakunle Akande.
WARRENSBURG, MO – The opportunity to present research at a professional conference is a goal for many educators, but at the University of Central Missouri, students in the School of Technology this month will share their scholarly work on a national stage.
Joined by two graduate program faculty members, five UCM students will make presentations at the Association for Technology Management and Applied Engineering National Conference Nov. 6-8 in Charlotte, N.C. The group from UCM is led by Joleen Byerline, instructor, and Suhansa Rodchua, professor, and includes graduate students who come from across the globe who will soon add both a UCM degree and national conference presentation to their resumes.
Representing UCM at the ATMAE conference are Olakunle Akande, Isanlu-Isin, Kwara, Nigeria; Ahmed Aldakroury, Alexandria, Egypt; Mshari Alshrari, AlEsawiyah, Saudi Arabia ; Arjun Jayakrishnan, Kerala, India, and Robert Minor, Fayette, Missouri. These students are enrolled in the Master of Science in Industrial Management program, and are the first authors of their research work. Bylerine and Rodchua are second authors with the students.
In order to be considered to present at the conference, abstracts describing each student’s research were considered through a peer review process. Because there was no specific category for student presentations, their work was selected among submissions to ATMAE from professors, researchers and business professionals nationwide.
“This is competitive in terms that it is peer reviewed,” Byerline said. “Not everyone who submits gets accepted.”
She pointed out that there will be 155 presentations at the conference, and at least 83 percent of the presentations are from individuals who work or study at Division I colleges and universities. The conference theme is “Fueling the Fourth Industrial Revolution: Industry 4.0.”
The UCM students who are participating are receiving support from the Office of Graduate Education and Research through Graduate Student Scholarly Travel Fund grants. This helps defray a portion of expenses they will incur. The School of Technology provides additional support for students to attend the conference.
During the event, three students will present with Rodchua and two will present with Byerline. Topics presented with Rodchua are “Trend and Prediction Profitability: A Case of Missouri’s Casinos,” by Miner; “Waste Reduction and Lean Six Sigma Implementation in Call Centers” by Aldakroury and Alshrari; and “Integration of Change Management and Concurrent Engineering in Asset Life-cycle Management: A Perspective on Process Plants” by Akande. Presentations with Byerline are “Streamlining of Scrap Management for a Manufacturing Plant in Bangalore India” by Jayarkishnan, and ”Improvement of Technical Knowledge Transfer for Young Professionals in Industry” by Akande. Byerline also will make one presentation on “Student Engagement: Small Projects, Big Impacts.”
Students attending the conference spoke about what it was like to receive faculty input on their research projects, and what it means to be chosen to share their research.
“To present for UCM and the School of Technology is an honor for me: it is my opportunity in action,” Alshrari said. He shared more about the project and the collaborative process with his research partner, Aldakroury, and Rodchua, who assisted them.
“For several months we worked together back and forth to develop our research, She (Rodchua) was so patient because we have to gather a lot data and analyze the quality tools to implement the right tools for the best result.”
Providing one example of the many topics UCM will present, he added about their project, “Most of us have contacted a call service to solve problems that related to a product or service. Our research is to identify how to increase first call resolution in order to solve the problem from the first call and reduce the time spent on the call. We also discuss the call center employee turnover rate. The call center industry has huge growth and expect to be about $500 billion in the global economy.”
Akande said the opportunity to present at a national conference is a “privilege and honor.”
“This event is an appropriate occasion to articulate what I have been learning and practicing. More so, it is a great platform to learn from the works of other students and connect with industry professionals.”
Jayakrishnan echoed Akande’s sentiment while also noting that it was exciting to learn that his research was accepted for presentation at ATMAE. Jayakrishnan’s study is concentrated on the manufacturing industry as it relates to quality assurance. This is applicable to his major and his professional ambition.
“The study, if found interesting for any organization focusing on waste reduction, can be a great opportunity for me to start a career in the quality field. If that dream will come true, it will not only be beneficial for myself but also be an inspiration for a lot of students at UCM,” he said.
“Within the school, we learn a lot of concepts and theories,” said Miner. “This presentation gives us an excellent opportunity to present those theories and practices.”
The faculty members who worked with these students are proud of their success, and look forward to joining their students for this event.
“I see every day how great they are in class,” Byerline said. “It’s nice for other people to see how great they are...This is just one of those opportunities where everyone can see these UCM students are really something special.”
“There is no doubt that our students at UCM are bright and diligent in conducting research. They work hard to accomplish their goals and put forth effort to create scholarly activities, both articles and poster presentations,” Rodchua said. “Appropriate guidance from faculty and sufficient funding from the campus are small investments compared to the students’ success in their future professional careers."