Summer program in supply chain leads student to business school

Friday, July 21, 2017

For Sara Shah, the road to Rutgers Business School started when she was a high school sophomore.

Rutgers was offering an eight-day summer program in supply chain management for area high school students. After her guidance counselor told her about the program, Shah said she had to google supply chain management to find out more about it.

She applied – enticed by what she read about supply chains and by the three college credits she could earn and later apply to Rutgers.

"I wasn’t really sure of what I wanted to do," Shah said recently. "I knew I was a good communicator and a good people person."

Sara Shah, an alumna of the supply chain department's summer program, will start her studies in supply chain management in September.

In June, while the summer supply chain program was introducing a new group of high school students to the world of procurement, logistics and business, Shah was on the Rutgers University-Newark campus preparing for her freshman year.

That summer program in supply chain made an impression. "When you’re the consumer you don’t see what goes on behind-the-scenes, especially when you’re a kid. So when you learn about the business relationships, it’s eye-opening," Shah said. "I learned things in the program that made my friends think I was really smart.”

Shah, who attended Science Park High School in Newark, will be part of the Honors Living-Learning Community on the Rutgers University-Newark Campus. The program fosters academic and social and personal development through curriculum centered on themes of "local citizenship in a global world."

While Shah was attracted to the community engagement aspect of the honors program, she chose to study supply chain management at Rutgers Business School. "I want to understand business, and I feel like studying supply chain management would give me that understanding," she said.

The students participating in the 2017 summer program took at tour of Coco-cola as part of their introduction into supply chain management.

Shah is still deciding whether she will go into the supply chain field or whether she will pursue work in a non-profit area with the knowledge she learns from Rutgers. Either way, she said her introduction to the business school during the supply chain summer program hooked her. She is one of three students who participated in the program and will be attending Rutgers Business School in the fall of 2017.

One of the objectives of the supply chain management department is to have the program serve as a feeder system, giving Newark area high school students access to an education that could lead to them to careers in the region.

Once she completed the summer program in 2015, Shah stayed in touch with her professors and returned the next summer as a mentor. "Everyone was so accessible and welcoming when we came into the program," she said. "It was such an intimate group, and I think being here in the summer made it feel like the school was ours."

"The professors in supply chain management," she added, "really made me feel cared about."

-Susan Todd

TAGS: Newark Honors Living-Learning Community Social Impact Supply Chain Management Undergraduate Undergraduate Newark