SBE receives $100k donation

The Wilfrid Laurier University Centre for Supply Chain Management, a department within the School of Business and Economics, has received a $100,000 donation from the Ontario chapter of a national association of business professionals.

The Ontario Institute of the Purchasing Management Association of Canada (PMAC), a not-for-profit organization, made the donation to Laurier in an effort to draw students’ attention to the field of supply chain management. The funds will be used to create scholarships as well as to organize a speakers’ series of industry professionals.

“What we do is try and maintain relationships at the student level to try and generate interest and awareness in supply chain management as a viable career opportunity,” explained David Lyons, marketing and member development manager at the Ontario institute of PMAC.

“The relationship between Laurier and the Ontario Institute of PMAC is just getting going; this is a big kick-start.”

Dean of SBE Ginny Dybenko emphasized the increasing relevance of this particular business discipline. “Supply chain management is rapidly becoming the critical skill for all operational managers worldwide,” she said, noting that the internationalization of business has made co-ordinating the movement and distribution of supplies and products vital.

“The big issue is getting supplies and products from one area to another and all of that requires an in-depth knowledge, not only of the operational aspect, but also the cultural, political and legal aspects.”

“We have at Laurier the largest department of supply chain management experts in Canada,” Dybenko pointed out. “[The Ontario Institute of PMAC] are essentially recognizing that level of expertise in us, when they provide this size of an award.”

Dybenko echoed Lyons sentiments, stating that this donation will hopefully encourage business students to consider supply chain management as an area of concentration in their education.

“The message we’re trying to put out to business students at Laurier is that this is a critical skill for them,” Dybenko continued, “And it will not only be essential for their future, but is also something that will really differentiate them from others.”

According to Dybenko, globalization has created a need for those entering the business world to possess these kinds of skills, a trend that will continue. “It all comes down to supply and demand,” she put simply. “Right now the demand is very, very high for these kinds of individuals, and I honestly don’t see that changing in the future.

“Ultimately, we’d like to become the university of record for supply chain management, and this [donation] puts us well on the path to accomplishing that.”

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