Archive for the 'Supply Chain/Ops Mgt' Category

Internship Spotlight: Allison Doerr, Mercury Marine

Allison Doerr, Supply Chain Management Major

Company Overview

Mercury Marine is the world’s leading manufacturer of recreational marine propulsion engines. Mercury’s headquarters is located in Fond du Lac, WI with manufacturing facilities in Mexico and China. The company provides engines, boats, services, and service parts for recreational, commercial, and government marine applications.

Obtaining My Internship

I never underestimated the benefits of networking. I was participating in student promotion interviews at the University of Wisconsin- Fond du Lac campus when I met Laurie Krasin. She asked me about school and my major. When I told her I would be majoring in supply chain management, she told me about a friend of hers who worked at Mercury Marine in the supply chain department. She provided me with her contact information, and I e-mailed her about Mercury’s co-op program. When the career fair came around, I went to Mercury’s booth and talked to a few of the gentlemen for a while, mentioned that I had spoken to someone at the company already, and provided them with my résumé. Because I had connected with one of their co-workers already, I feel it really helped me in obtaining my position.

My Internship Experience

I have received more experience that I could have even imagined. I am responsible for numerous back order reports and metrics. I gather data, analyze it, and publish it for distribution across multiple levels of management. My role as a buyer/analyst allows me to develop my negotiation and communication skills. I have had a great experience in working with foreign suppliers from all over the world. I play a large role in inventory management by adjusting inventory discrepancies. Currently, I am involved in working on a lean six sigma project. I have been analyzing data from almost 3,000 lines of part information to perform a SKU rationalization to eliminate parts, resulting in thousands of dollars savings by eliminating part numbers that no longer need to be carried in Mercury’s system.

Looking Forward

I will be graduating this May 2013. I feel very prepared from my coursework and this internship experience to obtain a professional career in purchasing upon graduation.

Internship Spotlight: Tyler Karner, RR Donnelley

Tyler Karner at RR Donnelley

My name is Tyler Karner and I am currently an Operations Intern at RR Donnelley in Appleton, WI.  RR Donnelley is a massive company employing over 60,000 people world-wide.  The site I work at is a distribution and fulfillment center for multiple book publishers.

How did I get the internship?

I worked for RR Donnelley when I was in high school, as summer help, so I recognized their name on a list of companies attending the spring 2012 Career Fair at UWO.  I introduced myself to the human resource representative and gave her my résumé.  She informed me that RR Donnelley would have an internship opening in June 2012, so I kept in contact by e-mailing and checking the company website.  Finally, I saw the opening for an Operations Intern and applied on-line and also sent an e-mail to the contact from the Career Fair.  I had an over the phone interview followed by an in person panel style interview a week later.  After a few days, I heard back with good news and I was offered the position.

My role as an Operations Intern:

One of my roles at the company is helping with daily operation reports which we use Microsoft Excel frequently.  I have opportunities with project management on many time sensitive projects and have learned valuable communication skills. An operations internship at RR Donnelley is unique because the intern gets to experience every aspect of the business, which means interns often get to help and work supervisors and coordinators on the front line.

Internship Spotlight: Jesse Lallier, Oshkosh Corporation

Jesse Lallier, Supply Chain Management Major

Company Overview

Oshkosh  Corporation was founded in 1917, where it produced four-wheel drive vehicles for the dirt roads of America. This increased transportation and commerce to urban areas helps make us who we are today. Oshkosh Corporation quickly expanded over the years and has recently became a fortune 500 company. Over the last 10-15 years Oshkosh Corporation has had many acquisitions making them very diversified. Currently the company has 10 distinct brands. These are JLG, Oshkosh Defense, Pierce, McNeilus, IMT, Medtec, Frontline Communications, CON-E-CO, London, Jerr-Dan, Oshkosh Airport Products, and Oshkosh Specialty Vehicles. Each line has a distinct product line but the top most familiar ones to the public are Oshkosh Defense, Pierce, JLG and McNeilus. As you can see Oshkosh is trying to expand and capture emerging markets globally. By expanding, they have captured a lot of attention and provided thousands of jobs to Winnebago County as well as around the world.

When Did I Start and How Did I Obtain My Internship?

I started at Oshkosh Defense on June 4, 2012.  The way I received my interview was through Oshkosh Corporation’s online application process.  Michael Godfrey, my advisor at UW Oshkosh, told me to look on their website and apply for a Team Coordinator Co-op position.  After I filled out my application online, it took about 3 months to get a reply back from Oshkosh Defense informing me that I have an interview.  In the interview we went over all my accomplishments, classes I have taken to prepare me for this position, previous experiences, etc. At the end of the interview he told me that he was amazed with what I have all accomplished and that I have received the Team Coordinator position at North Plant.

My Roles

As a Team Coordinator at Oshkosh Defense I have a lot of roles. These roles consist of managing 30-50 union production employees, production planning, safety and quality projects, scheduling, daily reports, time keeping, and payroll. All these roles are equally important and have to be carefully thought out to ensure continuous production, safety, and quality.  The most time consuming aspect of my day would be production planning and managing the 30-50 production employees. This is extremely difficult, but it is the most valuable experience for my future career path once I graduate.

My Future

Throughout my Co-op, Oshkosh Corporation has given me a wide range of experience that will help in any career path that I go into. I currently have one more year of college before I graduate with a Bachelors in Supply Chain Management and an emphasis in Entrepreneurship. With this degree I plan on getting into a supervisor role similar to the one I was in during my Co-op, and then eventually starting my own business after I build up enough capital.

Internship Spotlight: Eric Hetzel, Mercury Marine

Eric Hetzel, Supply Chain Analyst

Obtaining My Internship

I obtained my internship by attending the career fair provided by the University of Wisconsin Oshkosh.  At first, I was not going to talk to Mercury, but I ended up doing it and I got a phone interview.  I missed the call on the phone interview, and I figured I didn’t have a chance at the internship.  Luckily for me, Mercury called again two days later and I did well enough on the phone interview to receive an actual interview at Mercury Marine.

When the e-mail came that delivered the information on the interview, I could not believe it, the interview was going to be four hours.  I had never done anything like that before in my life.  After doing the interview, and getting a call informing me that I had received an offer, I started my first day on May 29th.  I was very anxious about this internship.  I heard that Mercury was a place where they gave you a lot of responsibility, and expected good interns.  I knew that expectations were high and I was going to have to work extremely hard to impress.

What I Do On a Day to Day Basis

When I started at Mercury in late May, I began on the further process desk.  Further process means that we ship parts to another company who machine, paint, or process parts in to the form that is needed.  Then those parts are shipped back to us for use.  Part way through my internship they wanted a full time employee on this desk and co-ops to start using the mechanical desk.  The mechanical desk has the most parts by volume, but they are much smaller and cheaper parts. Every day I start by grabbing the daily reports that are distributed amongst the analysts and buyers within the purchasing department.  These reports are reviewed, and the system may be adjusted to keep the parts on track.  Often time’s phone calls and emails are necessary to contact the supplier and discuss the issues that are occurring.  Orders are then either moved in or out to adjust to the schedule.  Most suppliers are incredibly helpful, and that is nice to have.  The thing that I like most about the job is the random situations that occur.  Rarely are two situations the same, so many variables can occur at any time.  This makes the job intense but interesting.


The main challenges that I face are dealing with stock losses and suppliers who are past due on their shipments.  Stock losses can occur at any time and when they do, you must contact the supplier and try to work magic to bring in enough parts to ensure that the line does not go down.  Past due suppliers are more frustrating then anything.  To get them caught up, you have to remind them of the consequences for shutting a line down.

What I have Learned 

Passing the halfway point in this internship, I have realized that this internship was everything that I could have asked for in terms of experience and enjoyment.  I feel that I am prepared for any job within this field of study because of Mercury’s demand.  The demand can vary so much here, which causes havoc within this job.  If I can handle the fluctuating demand from here, I feel that I can handle anything else as an analyst.

Internship Spotlight: Nick Lodl, Oshkosh Defense

Nick Lodl, Supply Chain Management

The Beginning

My journey to becoming an intern started with the job fair. I was new to the business world and I knew that I was good at networking, so I thought I would start there. I talked to a few companies, many of which did not interest me, until I spoke with the recruiters at Oshkosh Defense.

Oshkosh Defense seemed like an interesting place to work, and I thought an internship with the company would bode well for me in the future. It was spring semester and I knew that it would be a long shot, but I applied anyway. Months went by before I heard anything, then all of a sudden I received a phone call asking for an interview. I took the interview and was hired as a Team Coordinator Co-Op.

I was extremely nervous because my experience in the business world was vastly limited, and I was not confident that I was qualified for this position. However, I went for it and it has been the best decision of my life.

Day in the Life of a Co-Op

As a Team Coordinator it is my job to oversee production. We achieve success and continuous improvement by leading with Safety, Quality, and Work Place Organization. Each day is a new challenge with Oshkosh Defense. I get a lot of good exposure to many facets of the manufacturing world. Be it Quality, Safety, Production, Operations, Operations Finance, and Engineering; needless to say I wear a lot of “hats.”

What I have Learned

During my time at Oshkosh Corporation, I have found that if you can think critically, make sound decisions, work hard, and speak intelligently, you will be successful in any internship you choose to pursue. Class work is important. It is important to understand the fundamentals of cost and the concepts associated with many of the business classes. However, what you learn in your internship can never be taught in a classroom. It is important to embrace the internship experience and learn everything you can from as many people as you can.

Internship Spotlight: Brett Spangle, Miller Electric

Company Overview

Miller Electric is the world’s leading arc welding manufacturer. Starting back in 1929 as a one-man operation, Miller has grown into a global business, and employs close to 1,500 workers. Headquarters are located in Appleton, Wisconsin, which is where I started my internship eight months ago.

My Role

My frequent responsibilities involve purchasing raw materials, receiving raw materials, and sending out RFQ’s to potential suppliers. A larger project I worked on involved a four-month analysis on lost revenue and wasted costs from our paint line troubles and supplier paint problems. My spreadsheets and information gathered was used in an across the country meeting with our supplier’s board members.


The biggest challenge with my internship is only working three days a week. I receive emails and phone calls from suppliers everyday. If it is a question that seeks immediate attention, they may have to wait a day to be assisted. This also tends to back up my workload. However, my supervisor is very understanding about reasonable time frames for projects.

My Experience

The very first aspect at Miller Electric that I noticed was its environment. Everyone is very caring and fun to work with. They are very helpful and I have learned so much from this experience. Not only has this internship helped with my understanding of the way a large business functions, it has also taught me how to present myself in a professional manner.

Internship Spotlight: William Rasmussen, JL Property Services LLC

William Rasmussen, SCOM

My name is William Rasmussen, or “Tricky” at work, and I am doing my internship at a company called JL Property Services LLC. The company is a year round landscaping company that serves commercial and residential properties alike. The main sources of income for JL are lawn maintenance, fertilizing, concrete work, decorative concrete curbing, snowplowing and salting. I have worked at the company for over four years and have grown exponentially in the company.

In terms of my start, it was pretty uneventful. A good friend of mine was buds with my current boss, Jake Lutzow (hence the JL name). Jake, at this time, had just quit his full time job as a tin worker and decided to dedicate everything he had into this part time business. Jake and his partner, Brad, were growing drastically and needed more workers…and that is where I came in.

When I first started at the company, I was just general labor. Over the past few years, I have gained an extensive knowledge of the business. Thanks to Jake, I am now fully capable of doing any task that JL offers. I know how to operate all of our equipment, know how long things take to do, know costs of labor and materials, and know exactly how to do jobs better than our competitors.

My internship has been a whole new experience for me. I’m now considered one of the top employees in the company, and have gained responsibilities far greater than general labor. Over the last few years, the owners of JL have been shaping me into a sort of prodigy for the company. I was a completely fresh slate for them, and they have been teaching me things exactly how they want me to learn.  The best part about my history with the company is that they have been able to directly influence my college years. Everything I learn in my classes is quickly contrasted with the mass of knowledge I have gained at JL over the years. I’ve never been afraid to tell Jake, my boss, things I’ve learned at UW-O, and he has never been afraid of correcting me of things UW-O has taught me. Jake has showed me the real world application of the incredible knowledge that UW-O has given me.

My average day at JL starts at around seven or eight in the morning. Typically, I coordinate the daily activities for JL’s multiple crews. After everyone is set up for the day, I usually end up at a specific job site. Usually, I am at a certain job because of my experience level, or to train new employees. After the specific job, my day is far from over. While the majority of employees may be done for the day, I need to do my office duties for the day. I am solely responsible for a new system being implemented at JL. This system is likely to be the lifeblood of the company within the next year. All job data, billing information, daily organization, crew direction, and customer information, will be done through the system we are implementing right now. And that means that I need to enter, delete, or alter information in the system on a daily basis.

Nearly all employees are long gone by the time I start working on my additional office work. After a long day of organization, jobsites, and system maintenance, I still am not done. At this point I coordinate with the owner of the company on upcoming plans for the next day, week, or month. Calendars, post-it notes, rough sketches, excel documents, etc. all aid in our planning to maximize efficiency. Lastly, billing is done at our company on a weekly basis. And since I am responsible for our new system (that has all billing information), I am a major part in this process. It is very normal to see 12 hour days for me at a minimum.

While my internship may be highly demanding, I love it. I will keep working at this company for as long as I can. I personally have helped the company grow from nearly nothing; to the awesome company we are now. JL has given me nothing but opportunity, and I intend on continuing to provide them with phenomenal work for years to come. The University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh has helped me become strong academically, and JL has helped me become a true business specialist.

Spotlight Internship: Mike Golden, Engman-Taylor Company

Mike Golden, SCOM

My name is Mike Golden and I am going into my senior year of college planning to graduate May 2013 with a Supply Chain and Operations Management degree.   I am currently doing a Materials Management Internship at a machine tool distribution business in Appleton called Engman-Taylor Company, Inc.

When first trying to find an internship I searched a lot on TitanJobs but then I found a website called .  I could do a search such as “supply chain intern” and it would search that every day and email me with any job openings it came across.  It would search through many sites including TitanJobs, CareerBuilder, and Monster to name a few.  This seemed to be the easiest and most efficient way of finding job openings while taking seven classes during my last semester although it ending up not working out.

How I Got my Internship

My dad is currently a sales rep at Engman-Taylor and actually helped get me a position last summer as an Enhanced Services Specialist which deals more on the supplier end of things rather than my new position dealing with purchasing.  As this summer went on, I emailed the President on Engman-Taylor asking if there was any way I could work at ETCO again and do something to complete my SCOM internship.  He responded with saying how great of a field that is to get into and they actually needed some help in their purchasing department.

My Role as a Materials Management Intern

I spend each of my days in a cubicle in the purchasing department doing various different things with purchase orders.  My day mainly consists of expediting purchase orders and calling suppliers and customers.  I look up order purchase orders to suppliers and track where the product is; if it hasn’t been shipped on its expected ship date, I have to call the supplier and see where the part is or what the hold-up is.  If there is going to be a delayed ship date, then I have to notify either the customer or that customer’s sales representative.

Another part of my job is calling suppliers to find out what our current distributor discount is.  Since we are one of the biggest machine tool distributers in the country, we receive discounts off the tools we buy from all the different suppliers.  When I figure out what our current discount is, then I need to find out if we are receiving the biggest discount possible.  For example, if we spend $100,000 per year at one supplier and receive a 25% discount, I need to find out what we need to do get to the next level of discounts.  The next level could be spending $150,000 to get a 40% discount on all parts but in most cases we are already receiving the highest discount possible.

My Future

I have loved working at Engman-Taylor since the day I started there last year.  I have done so many different things there and learned so much about how a business operates on the supplier and purchasing end.  My different positions there gave me a great idea of what I want to do with my career and hope I will be able to continue working there after I graduate.

Kenny Dornburg – FreightConnections Internship

Kenny Dornburg

Kenny Dornburg

Internship Search

My name is Kenny Dornburg and I am an intern at FreightConnections in Menasha, WI.  My official title, at the internship, is a Finance/Strategy/Operations intern.  I found this internship through the emails I am sent by TitanJobs, through the University of Wisconsin.

When I first started searching for an internship I looked closer to home, Port Washington, WI.  I wanted be a part of a small company that was looking for a determined college intern.  When I came across FreightConnections I found out that it was exactly what I was looking for.

Internship Beginning

When the President of the company emailed me to set up an internship, I was nervous.  The fact that someone with that high of a status was going to be interviewing me put even more pressure on me.  Once I walked into the office and met him, all of the pressure seemed to disappear.  He introduced me to the employees and I knew this would be a perfect fit for me.

The first week I was there was all training.  I learned how to use Apple products as well as about the entire freight industry.  There is a lot more activity, than I previously thought, that goes on during every delivery.


Even though it is summer, I am still a part-time intern because I am taking a summer class that takes up my morning hours.  I still have plenty of time to finish my work at the office.

On a typical day, I get there at 1 P.M. and get to work right away.  Since FreightConnections is a new online company, I have been doing a lot of quality assurance on the site.  This is a crucial part to the business because our site is the device our customers will be using the most.

They have given me projects to do as well.  I have made spreadsheets for the marketing department which included market research data.  Another project was a spreadsheet on the potential customers.  I recorded information for over 100 customers for the sales department to use.

My favorite part about my projects is that I learned how to use Google Apps.  I never knew about this applications and it is one of the most amazing technologies I have used.  There are some features that I would like them to change, but other than those I enjoy it.


I believe that my future at FreightConnections is certain.  They have already told me that if I continue to do a good job they will not hesitate to hire me once I graduate.  I am hoping to intern here again during the school year, which will keep me up to date with the company.

I would love to stay with this company because I enjoy the tasks and projects they assign me as well as everyone I work with.  The work environment is perfect for me.

Internship Spotlight: Travis Derocha, Schneider National

Travis Derocha, Supply Chain Operations Management (SCOM)


The Search

My name is Travis Derocha and I am an intern at Schneider National in Green Bay, WI.  My official intern title is Commercial Performance and Operations Intern or Business Analyst for short.  I obtained my internship by searching the Schneider National job site.  I found this position, read the job description and liked what I saw.

Obviously we know already that COB students need an internship to graduate.  So when I started my search I looked at places close to home that had a small town family feel to them.  Schneider immediately came to mind.  Not to mention, as a SCOM major the transportation industry suits me perfect.

The Start

I started my internship on February 27th, which was a Monday.  Mondays are orientation days.  My job entails that I utilize Microsoft Software to build tools that automate repetitive tasks of associates in the many lines of business.  Having taken both Qualitative Business Analysis and Information Systems, I was able to pick up fairly quick.

The beginning of my internship was kind of stressful with work, school, and commuting to school but it proved to be a great success.  Meeting deadlines here at work can be a bit more stressful than class work though, due to the fact that I am being paid to do this work where as I am paying to do homework.

As of Now

Now that it is summer I am full time.  This takes a lot of stress off knowing I have more time for projects that are assigned to me and I don’t really have to worry about any class work other than this class itself.  I have completed several projects as of late and I am continuing to get new ones- some more challenging than others.  The intern group has their own room and there are five of us. We work together to create solutions for the other lines of business.

I would have to say my most favorite project so far has been my very first one.  It was challenging for me as I learned the ins and outs of the Microsoft tools and how to create an outcome to please our customer which happened to be the line of business, Van Truck Load.  It is a complex tool that provides call metrics of associates to managers.  The tool saves the leadership group an hour every day over the process that was previously in place.

The Future

I am very confident that I will be able to remain part of the Schneider family after I graduate.  I have had the opportunity to work with many different functions of the company.  After being here for about three months I am positive I made the right choice in majors and the right choice in choosing the Business Analyst Intern position here at Schneider National.

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