Top industry executives interact with students

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Each semester, Dr. Judith Norback, ISyE's director of Workplace and Academic Communication, pulls together a group of top industry executives from a variety of fields to interact directly with ISyE students in Senior Design. This year's panel included Chip Robert, BSIE 1960, recently retired chairman and treasurer of Robert Ltd.; David McKenney, BSIE 1964, chairman and CEO of McKenney's Inc.; John McKenney, BSIE 1990, president of McKenney's Inc.; and Jeb Stewart, Cls. 1991 chairman and CEO of SciHealth Holdings, Inc. and president of Xana Management.

"All our panel discussions are interactive and give students a rare opportunity to ask questions of CEOs. The panelists discuss the most important communication skills needed to move up the career ladder,* said Norback. The executives in Norback's panels also concentrate on communication skills for cross-cultural business interaction. After the one-hour panel interaction, time is allowed for students to meet the executives one-on-one.

The Panel is one part of the workforce communication instruction for the Senior Design course. Making our graduate's job competitive and enabling them to move quickly up the career ladder are the two goals of the instruction. Other workforce communication instructional elements include small group feedback in the Workforce Communication Lab before and after class presentations, videotaping of class presentations, and an in-class Tutorial on Workforce Presentation. The instruction is based on interviews conducted with practicing ISyEs, managers, and CEOs of organizations employing many IEs.

Past executives and companies who have participated in the ISyE Senior Executive Panel on Workforce Communication include:

Bird Blitch, BSIE 1997, Broadsource Pepper Bullock, Northwestern Mutual Financial Network

Wally Buran, BSIE 1975, MSIE 1978, Edenfield Executive-in-Residence, ISyE at Georgia Tech

Alan Dabbiere, Wandering WiFi

Tom Dozier, BSIE 1963, GoldMech

Chuck Easley, BSIM 1886, Kurt Salmon Associates

Mel Hall, BSIE 1967, Comprehensive Health Services

Jody Markopoulos, GE

Don Pirkle, BSIE 1958, Dow Chemical

Bill Reed, BSIE 1957, MSIE 1963, Kurt Salmon Associates

Chip Robert, BSIE 1960, Robert Ltd.

Barbara Sanders, Delta Technology

Jeb Stewart, Cls. 1991, SciHealth

For more information on the panel, visit




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  • Created By:
    Barbara Christopher
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  • Modified By:
    Fletcher Moore
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