Kelley School launching manufacturing research center at IUPUI

Indiana University’s Kelley School of Business plans to create a manufacturing research center that will be housed on the IUPUI campus, the school announced Wednesday.

The IU Kelley School Center for Excellence in Manufacturing is expected to focus “on the changing landscape of manufacturing in central Indiana and across the nation,” and “provide strategic and leadership training” for Kelley Evening MBA and undergraduate students.

A $1 million gift from alumnus Gregg Sherrill and his wife, Sabine, will support a directorship for the center. Mark Frohlich, an associate professor of operations management, has been named the Gregg and Sabine Sherrill Director of Excellence in Manufacturing.

Gregg Sherrill, who received his MBA in 1991, is executive chairman of Tenneco Inc. and past chair of the National Association of Manufacturers board.

A $75,000 grant from the National Association of Manufacturers helped to build the center’s curriculum of courses on business strategy for manufacturing firms.

The goal is to develop executive talent ready to lead manufacturing enterprises.

“We recognize the importance of manufacturing to the U.S. economy and here in central Indiana,” Kelley School Dean Idalene “Idie” Kesner said in written remarks. “There is a need for specialized programs and courses that train the next generation of executive talent to make U.S. manufacturing globally competitive.”

The Kelley School said the center’s mission is “to help develop skills in competitive strategy so that mid-career manufacturing professionals make better executive decisions, motivate organizational excellence and enable globally competitive enterprises.”

The center’s course for Evening MBA students, called “Strategic Management and Leadership,” begins this summer. An undergraduate course will be offered next spring.

In addition to manufacturing strategy courses, the center’s staff will work directly with Indiana companies and conduct research in the field to create new strategies for managers in manufacturing.

The Kelley School has an enrollment exceeding 10,500 students across two campuses. At IUPUI, it is host to a full-time undergraduate program and four graduate programs, including master’s programs in accounting and taxation, the Business of Medicine Physician MBA and the Evening MBA.

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