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Shaping Tomorrow’s Supply Chain Leaders with Dr. Pedro Reyes 🚀

Introduction: The episode introduces Dr. Pedro Reyes, an associate professor of operations and supply chain management at Baylor University. With a rich background in the field, including 80+ academic presentations, several media interviews, and numerous journal publications, Dr. Reyes is an esteemed guest on the show.

Dr. Reyes' Journey: Starting off as a mathematician, Dr. Reyes worked in the industry for over 25 years, primarily in food & beverage and high-tech manufacturing before transitioning to academia.

Importance of Supply Chain: The discussion turns to the intricacies of supply chains, illustrating how consumers often only see the end of the process, unaware of its complexity. Dr. Reyes uses the example of the automobile and package goods to explain how much goes on behind the scenes.

Evolution of Supply Chain with Technology: Dr. Reyes reflects on the technological advancements he’s witnessed, such as the barcode, digital cash registers, and computers. He emphasizes that while core processes in the supply chain remain unchanged, technology has revolutionized their efficiency and decision-making effectiveness. He touches upon RFID, Industry 4.0 technologies like IoT, machine learning, artificial intelligence, and the potential of blockchain in supply chains.

Education 4.0: Today's students, molded by the fourth industrial revolution, have different learning styles. Dr. Reyes encourages them to embrace technology, even mentioning the use of AI tools like ChatGPT to help with assignments. He highlights that students today are more tech-savvy and receptive to innovation.

The Role of Math in Supply Chain: Dr. Reyes emphasizes the importance of math in supply chain decisions. Though the math itself is simple, translating those mathematical solutions into actionable business decisions can be challenging.

Internships: The value of internships in providing real-world experience for students is underlined. Dr. Reyes notes that internships today are more hands-on than in the past, offering students real responsibilities rather than just clerical tasks. He estimates that about 80% of students who intern get job offers from the companies they worked at.

Closing Thoughts: Mistakes and failures are integral to the learning process, both in the classroom and in real-life settings. Dr. Reyes believes that through internships and simulations, students can learn from their errors and grow. He concludes by highlighting that many Baylor students land jobs in renowned companies, though some venture into lesser-known but equally valuable firms.

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