As part of Scheller’s Countdown to Commencement series, we interviewed a few soon-to-be graduates from our undergraduate, MBA, and Ph.D. programs to learn about their backgrounds, why they chose Scheller College, and what they plan to do after Spring 2019 Commencement.
Meet Alex Luczkow:
Alex is completing his BSBA with a concentration in Operations and Supply Chain Management and a minor in Law, Science and Technology (LST) and describes himself as a driven, goal-oriented individual who enjoys nature and making a positive impact on the world. A native Atlantan, Alex will be working for The Home Depot as a logistics analyst working with the Online, Parcel, and Line-Haul team to implement The Home Depot’s “One Supply Chain” Initiative.
Why did you choose Scheller College of Business?
The reason I chose to attend Scheller was because of its focus on the intersection of technology and business. During a tour of the College, I learned about the concentration programs offered and the curriculum that was cultivating students who can succeed in a data-driven business environment.
As a business student in the heart of Tech Square, how do you think Scheller College embodies the intersection of business and technology?
Scheller College of Business embodies the intersection of business and technology in two ways. First, its physical location in Tech Square. Tech Square is home to many Innovation Centers from large companies, such as Delta Air Lines and Home Depot, and it is also home to the ATDC, which is a state-funded organization dedicated to helping start-up companies teach important entrepreneurial skills and offer resources to help the entrepreneurs build their business. ATDC also has a great relationship with Georgia Tech and they are always working to connect students with start-up companies. Second is the networking connections Scheller College has with companies around the country. Scheller’s IMPACT Business Speaker Series and Ray C. Anderson Center for Sustainable Business are continuously hosting executives from successful companies to speak about their experiences – providing opportunities for students to listen, learn, and engage.
Who was your favorite professor (and why)?
My favorite professor was Bob Myers for MGT 4360: Global Operations. He would always find a way to make the class laugh with stories about his time at Georgia Tech as an undergraduate student. He is extremely committed to making the Operations concentration one of the best concentrations at Scheller. He is the Faculty Advisor for the Undergraduate Operations Management Society and I worked closely with him to organize information sessions with Fortune 500 companies for the past year.
Where did you intern/co-op and when? What projects did you work on during your internship?
I had two internships during my time at Scheller. My first internship was with HD Supply White Cap in Norcross, Georgia, where I worked as the Pricing Department intern. During this internship, I worked with the pricing team to adjust the prices of over 2,000 products from the company’s wide assortment of construction supply materials and build personalized pricing/discount strategies for over 800 business customers around the country. My second internship was with Gypsum Management and Supply at their headquarters in Tucker, Georgia, where I worked as the Industrial Engineering intern for the Director of Systems Integration and Special Projects. One project I worked on was creating a dashboard to track the usage of the company’s ERP system at yard sites across the country. Another prone of my projects was improving the auditing process for Capitol Materials, a subsidiary of GMS, by creating a calendar that tracked daily vehicle pre-inspection reports. The third project I worked on was implementing new software for the company’s Samsung Tablets to improve the order checking and inventory counting processes at yard sites. The original purpose of these tablets was to serve as a GPS tracking device, which the federal government recently mandated all Commercial Motor Vehicles have installed.
What was your favorite course (and what was the biggest insight you gained about business from it?) My favorite course was MGT 4803: Sustainability and Shared Value with Professor Ravi Subramanian. The course teaches students the importance of sustainability and the ways both communities and business can benefit from placing an emphasis on sustainable practices, whether that be in protecting the environment, providing affordable housing, or offering a living wage to employees around the world. We reviewed a variety of different sustainability case studies and heard from many guest speakers who shared what their companies have done to promote sustainability including Coca-Cola North America, Center for Sustainable Communities, and Ford Motor Company. We also worked with the Director of the Center for Sustainable Communities on developing project proposals for shared value initiatives in Portsmouth, Virginia. It was a great experience to work on a project which has real-world implications.
Did you participate in any hands-on/experiential learning opportunities? If yes, which projects/companies did you work with and how did you help them?
I worked on two different projects for companies in my classes at Scheller. One project was for MGT 4366: Service Operations Management with Professor Manpreet Hora. For this project, my team and I administered “Walk-through-Audit” of Capitol Materials, a local drywall supply company that I worked with in my previous internship at Gypsum Management and Supply. The goal of the project was to identify any potential service issues and recommend solutions based on our findings. We created a process flow map of the service, administered a customer survey to over 60 customers, and conducted a time study to analyze service speed. The other project was for MGT 4803: Sustainability and Shared Value with Professor Ravi Subramanian. For this project, we worked with the Director of Center for Sustainable Communities to develop a small business corridor for the town of Portsmouth, Virginia. The goal of this project was to develop an area that would foster local business and provide the town with a pleasant, “green” area to visit. We sought to model our development based on Tech Square and we worked with ATDC to learn how they support local entrepreneurs.
Did you travel abroad during your time at Scheller? What were some of your key takeaways from the experience?
I did the Oxford Study Abroad Program during the summer of my first year. It was an amazing experience and I would recommend that every student try to study abroad at least one time during their college career. During the travel portion of the program, we travelled with an art history professor and a music history professor and visited many museums and concert halls experiencing European culture. I took art history in high school, so I had some knowledge of European art before the trip. The ability to see the art and architecture in person and have an expert art historian to provide extra information and answer questions was quite a unique opportunity. I also was able to live on-campus at one of the Oxford Colleges for an entire month and take classes that counted towards my degree. We had the ability to travel around some during the weekends and I was able to visit London; Ben Nevis and Edinburgh in Scotland; and Dublin, Ireland.
How did the extracurricular offerings at Scheller College help you during your time here?
One of the most beneficial extracurricular offerings at Scheller was the Undergraduate Operations Management Society. I was able to attend a variety of information sessions with Fortune 500 companies and learn more about industry trends and what managers would like to see out of college students.
What is your best piece of advice to an applicant hoping to get into Scheller College?
The best piece of advice I have for an applicant hoping to be accepted into Scheller College of Business would be to perform to the best of your abilities in your classes in high school and be involved with as many clubs and organizations as you can. Georgia Tech Admissions likes to see both an academically competitive and well-rounded student.
What is the biggest myth about Scheller College? (And how was it the same or different than what you experienced?)
The biggest myth about Scheller College is that the classes are easy. Every professor I had challenged me and expected the same quality and work ethic that managers expect outside of the classroom. I would like to add that you can do well and receive good grades if you put the effort in. All of my professors clearly defined their expectations for assignments and tests, had fair grading standards, and were easily accessible during their office hours to discuss anything, whether it be related to the class or your plans for the future.
Who most influenced your decision to pursue business in college? (A parent? A teacher? A role model/mentor?)
I would say that my parents most influenced my decision to pursue business in college. They both worked in a variety of different business roles in different companies, so I liked the idea of having a degree that would allow me to be able to approach any problem and develop solutions backed up by data.
What are the top two items on your bucket list?
Travel to every continent and visit every national park in the United States.