One consequence of the global pandemic has been to bring the concept and importance of supply chains into sharp relief for everyone, suppliers and consumers alike. In a well-tuned system, goods flow smoothly and predictably among the public- and private-sector organizations embedded in a global supply network. Modern information systems can allow the supply network to operate efficiently and with “just-in-time” precision.
What we have seen over the last several years, however, is that when individual links in the supply chain weaken or break, global disruption can occur, with cascading impacts. Supply chain management represents a much-needed and rapidly growing field within the business community. The speed and complexity of global supply networks demand new knowledge and skills among managers and field personnel to implement and manage robust systems.
The Congdon School of Supply Chain, Business Analytics and Information Systems is responding to this need. The school, part of UNCW’s Cameron School of Business, will launch an online 30-credit-hour master’s degree in Supply Chain Management (MS SCM) program starting Fall Semester 2023.
This program will focus on developing workforce-relevant skills for each student, directly reflecting UNCW’s mission of learning through the integration of teaching and mentoring with research and service. The program also supports UNCW's mission of spurring creative inquiry and critical thinking in areas of expertise that serve state needs.
Our MS SCM program aims to equip students with advanced skills and knowledge in this field so that, as graduates, they can successfully plan and implement robust business processes that leverage the newest data and communications tools. In addition to taking courses that explore aspects of supply chain management itself, students will learn skills that improve business decision-making. Foundational courses will provide realistic examples to illustrate the complementary strengths of business skills, supply chain management, and analysis and planning.
Students will apply what they are learning in a business internship.
Program content will remain responsive to employers’ needs with the help of an engaged, active business advisory board that will help us develop specific skills training and keep that training up to date.
The Cameron School has a strong international focus, enabling our American students to study at various partner institutions abroad, and welcoming students from all over the world to enhance their university experience here at UNCW. By the very nature of supply chain management as an international discipline, our new MS SCM program contributes a distinctive and valuable perspective to the university’s existing focus on the economy and global business.
Master’s programs are a vital aspect of UNCW education. We at the Cameron School believe that this new offering underscores the university’s foundational premise that “student engagement, creative inquiry, critical thinking, thoughtful expression, and responsible citizenship is expressed in our baccalaureate and masters’ programs.”
This new program is an excellent fit for the UNCW strategic plan, which emphasizes teaching and research that fosters global learning. More specifically, we believe the MS SCM supports two of the university’s strategic goals.
The first is “to attract and retain high-quality, diverse students, faculty and staff; and to ensure an inclusive campus culture and a global mindset.” A degree program that prepares students to think and work across cultures, time zones and business systems will develop graduates who thrive on creating global relationships and who can understand, appreciate and adapt to changing needs and circumstances around the world.
The second strategic goal supported by our new master’s degree program is “to enable and nurture a sense of a student-centered community by enhancing academic advising and student support programs for career placement and graduate school.” Our faculty and staff are absolutely committed to ensuring the success of these students, as are the members of our new MS SCM advisory board. Although the program is conducted online, mentoring and advising are essential aspects of the experience for students.
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