Meet Our Students

LGO students come from a variety of undergraduate institutions, industry experiences, and career goals. Together, they forge lifelong friendships during the program. We’ve asked current students to explain their experience below. Why do a dual degree? Why study engineering and business at the same time? What unique opportunities does the LGO program, MIT courses, and MIT students offer? Even while completing two degrees, MIT still has flexibility for students to pursue what is most interesting for them.

Alexandra Unger

LGO '18 interning at Sanofi in Frankfurt, Germany

Engineering department Mechanical Engineering

Undergraduate degree Northeastern University, Mechanical Engineering

Company before LGO AB InBev

I

Why LGO?

I knew before I finished my bachelor’s degree that I did not want to pursue a fully technical engineering role. Between undergrad and applying to business school, I worked in a production management role at a consumer packaged goods company. It was a great way to use my engineering background in a business context. I saw from this experience that having the engineering background made me a stronger manager. I knew that I wanted to continue down this path.

When I started my MBA search, I knew I needed an engineering component. There is really no other program out there like LGO. The program appealed to me as a way to bring engineering, business, and leadership together to make me a better organizational and systemic problem solver. I am now learning a more nuanced approach to management, but also solidifying my technical interests in industry-specific engineering courses. The strong focus on leadership has helped me explore how to handle difficult problems by using management decisions and technical foundations.

 MIT Integration

I took a course called Complex Systems Design in the mechanical engineering department. I worked in a group with other MechE graduates and undergrads on a semester-long project. Getting to know my classmates on our project team was a great experience. There is a lot of team-building in MIT Sloan classes, but it is sometimes hard to form close working relationships with engineering students. Taking a project-based engineering class helped me get to know the students and the school of engineering as a whole better. We were able to visit some of their labs, and I discovered resources I hadn’t known about before.

Partner Companies

As Domestic Plant Trek (DPT) co-chair, I worked very closely with ten partner companies to plan our two-week trek across the US in January. Getting to work with representatives from each company was a great way to get a feel for the company culture and what LGOs typically do after graduation. We saw inside so many different companies on the trek. You can clearly see similarities and differences between how companies operate. Even this brief tour gives you experiences and ideas to expand upon in future projects or jobs. Some of the LGO contacts we reached out to became resources for other class projects.

LGO Life

Classes are just one part of LGO. Though they are a lot of work, clubs and social events balance out your life. I am co-president of the Sloan Microbrew Club, which is a great forum for learning about the beer industry while talking with other students over a flight of delicious beer from one of the many small breweries in the Boston area. Between events organized by LGO students, MIT Sloan, and the whole MIT community, there is so much going on besides class. It can be hard to balance everything, but you learn to be more efficient and prioritize things that will help make the most enriching experience.

Kevin Schell

LGO '18 interning at Caterpillar in Chicago, IL

Engineering department Mechanical Engineering

Undergraduate degree Rice University, Mechanical Engineering

Company before LGO Unison Energy

Why LGO?

When joining LGO, I wanted to engage with problems in the electric power sector that require engineering and business knowledge to solve. Those problems certainly aren’t unique to electric power, however, and it’s a problem that other graduate schools struggle to address. Any leadership position requires the ability to foster collaboration between groups that may not see eye-to-eye. LGO is intrinsically designed to bridge this gap.

Looking back, however, the best reason to come to LGO are your classmates. LGO students are exceptionally varied in all the ways that you want your friends to be diverse. They come from everywhere, have had divergent work experiences, and have unique extracurricular passions. But LGO’s are all similar in the ways you may want from your friends. They go out of their way to help each other. They have an exceptional work ethic. And they all (will learn to) play intramural hockey.

MIT Integration

Don’t be afraid to dive into leadership positions right away! The LGO program schedule is such that you will only have one full year on campus. Being present and active is more important for good leadership in MIT activities than previous experience or expertise.

I chose to join the 2017 MIT Energy Conference team as Content Director in my first year. It was a great experience even though I had little experience in large-scale event planning. Recruiting speakers to come to MITEC was a fun (and occasionally anxiety inducing) process. When I introduced myself as an MIT student, especially when recruiting speakers, I could cold-call business executives and political leaders and have familiar conversations with those people about exciting topics.

Partner Companies

It’s one thing to have someone tell you how exhilarating skydiving is, but it’s entirely different to actually leap from the plane yourself. Having a robust partner company network and applying classroom skills to those companies’ problems contextualizes everything you do and learn at LGO.

One of the questions that I’m exploring in my current internship is how Caterpillar could work with its dealer network to virtually pool inventory by conducting longest path matching between machines that are already in the network and dealer needs. I got this idea directly from the optimization class that we took during our first summer. It’s exciting and rewarding to be able to test that idea with tangible impact.

Magoo Rustia

LGO '18 interning at Amgen in Boston, MA

Engineering department Mechanical Engineering

Undergraduate degree De La Salle University, Industrial Engineering

Company before LGO Mondelez International (formerly Kraft Foods)

 

Why LGO?

I worked at a Fortune 100 company for around four years, most recently as a product commercialization manager. I brought chocolate products into several developing markets within APAC. During this time, I also co-founded a tech startup which eventually failed despite receiving VC funding. After this experience, I wanted to help entrepreneurial ideas from developing economies become a reality through a factory and accelerator. But I lacked the business and engineering skill set needed to achieve that goal. The MIT LGO program provided the perfect balance of coursework, theory, action learning, academics, and industry partnerships. It gave me exposure to classmates of similar interests – all within an ideal time frame of two years.

Curriculum

Because I wanted to develop a contract manufacturing facility and a hardware accelerator, I selected courses to develop relevant skills. I wanted to meet professors with expertise in those fields and learn through hands-on projects with industry leaders. To better understand manufacturing from a mechanical perspective, I took Manufacturing Processes and Systems and Structural Materials. The product design classes have also encouraged me to apply my engineering and business knowledge in tandem. In Global Engineering (a product design course for developing markets), I worked with a Fortune 500 company on a beverage chilling project for developing markets with hot climates. For Product Design and Development, we developed an IOT-enabled bicycle accessory for healthy hydration. I supplemented these engineering courses with Sloan courses that would help me run my own business such as Corporate Finance, People Analytics (HR) and Entrepreneurial Strategy.

Faculty

The faculty were one of the main reasons why I applied to MIT. They are known to be very approachable, down-to-earth, and true experts in their fields. MIT professors wrote many of the books I used in undergraduate studies, and it is a great honor to learn from them.

Arnie Barnett has transformed the way I look at probability and made it genuinely useful for my daily life. Amos Winter taught our Global Engineering class and not only instilled the mindset of using basic engineering concepts to prove product design criteria, but also taught us how to approach the needs of the developing world. Adrien Verdelhan taught me Managerial Finance in a way that makes every financial concept stick for life. I had the experience of TA-ing a SIP class for John Sterman, who gave a thoughtful lecture on ethics, but is also a leader in system dynamics, healthcare and sustainability. Lastly, Steve Eppinger, the product design guru, has made me think carefully about how product design can actually impact the environment.

This year, I look forward to working with my very knowledgeable and experienced advisers: Nelson Repenning, Richard Braatz and Dan Whitney, all of whom have been very approachable and insightful resources as I begin my research at Amgen.

MIT Integration

Last April, I co-organized the MITxMake Maker Festival, MIT’s largest annual student-run maker showcase, which attracted 800 participants to engage in talks, workshops, and exhibits that would promote the maker culture across all ages. It was interesting to see different students come together from across MIT, ranging from mechanical engineering to architecture. This  demonstrates how diverse MIT can be and how students can learn so much from one another. I am now the Co-President of the Design Club, and our team is preparing more hands-on and industry-related activities for our members in the coming academic year. Lastly, through my interactions within MIT LGO, I am now working on a travel services startup under the guidance of the MIT Sandbox Mentorship program. MIT is indeed a fire hose. Time management and carefully selecting your activities will help you make the most out of your experience.

LGO Life

During my free time, I continue to challenge myself to go out of my comfort zone and learn new things. I practice my Spanish, cooking, and baking (which my hungry LGO classmates have gladly supported). I’ve also learned how to skate, ski, and play hockey. One of the best traditions of LGO is playing hockey during the winter. This is open to everyone, even to those who cannot skate. As a goalie, I could barely hold myself up on the ice. My teammates had to drag me across the rink each round! It was a fun experience that truly exemplifies the open and collaborative spirit of MIT and LGO.

Chen Arambula

LGO '18 interning at American Industrial Partners in New York, NY

Engineering department Mechanical Engineering

Undergraduate degree Tecnológico de Monterrey, Mechatronics Engineering

Company before LGO Zodiac Aerospace

Why LGO?

I worked in industry for several years before LGO. I have a family. If I was going to take two years off, it had to be really worth it. I wanted to transition to a senior leadership position, and I thought that a dual-degree program would provide me the most complete experience. The MIT LGO program was the best choice hands down. It is a program with no parallel that gives you access to the best faculty in the world from the MIT School of Engineering and the MIT Sloan School of Management. You get to meet and have one-on-one conversations with CEOs and VPs from some of the most important companies in the world. The plant treks provide an insight about the partner companies that you hardly get to see anywhere else.

Partner Companies

The partner companies constantly interact with the students. They come to campus for presentations about their companies. We network with them during receptions or we work with them for the logistics of the Domestic Plan Trek (DPT). In addition, partner companies generally have LGO alumni, and they are an excellent resource to help with any questions. Thanks to the relationship with the partner companies, I explored the possibility of continuing my career in industries that I haven’t considered before.

LGO Life

LGO is a community of outstanding individuals. I enjoy spending time in class and projects with every one of them. However, I think that the social events and trips give me the best opportunity to get to know the other students and their families and thus create a lasting bond. There are several LGO traditional events: BBQs, Karaoke, Chili cookoffs, etc. My wife and two daughters live with me in Cambridge. During the summer we lived off campus and they were a little isolated. Once we moved on campus, they are now engaged in the community and involved on the variety of events organized for SOs. My wife even leads a group for new and expecting SO parents. I love to watch my daughters play with the kids of my fellow LGOs at the LGO BBQs.

Matt Wallach

LGO '18 interning at Nike in Portland, OR

Engineering department Mechanical Engineering

Undergraduate degree Dartmouth College, Mathematics

Company before LGO BMW Manufacturing

Why LGO?

LGO is the best of both worlds: a top-notch MBA and an engineering degree from one of the world’s top engineering schools. All in just two years. That’s hard to beat!

Curriculum

I went in with a very open mind. I took two project courses during my first fall semester, which ended up being a lot of work on top of the Sloan core. But it was manageable. It helped that several other LGOs chose to take the same engineering courses. I really enjoyed Introduction to Operations Management over the summer, so I’m trying to take as many operations classes as I can. Also, in my internship I’m learning firsthand how useful data analytics can be to help large organizations make data-driven decisions, so I’m also looking to take more analytics courses when I return to MIT.

Faculty

I had several great professors during my first year in LGO. The one that stands out most is Sean Willems, who taught Introduction to Operations Management during our first summer. His blunt and engaging style piqued my interested in the subject. Thanks to my experience in his class, I chose an operations-heavy internship project and have been applying many of the lessons I learned in his class.

MIT Integration

There is simply too much cool stuff going on at MIT, which is a great problem to have. You’ll be overwhelmed with presentations and symposiums. One of the more interesting events I attended was the Delta-V competition, a culmination of about 20 entrepreneurial teams’ work from throughout the summer. Also, the MIT Sloan Cultural functions (C-functions) are always a great time.

MIT Network

The LGO community is amazing. Without going into detail, my fiancé and I had a setback last year and were overwhelmed by the support from the LGO community. People stepped up, organized, and provided rallying support. It was a true lesson in natural leadership that will always stick with me.

Partner Companies

Domestic Plant Trek (DPT) is a quintessential LGO experience and a great way to get to know the partner companies. Prior to the two-week trek, several of nine companies that we visited were somewhat foreign to me. After I toured their facilities and met a few senior leaders, I knew so much more about their core business.  I got a feeling for each company’s culture and could judge if it might be a good fit for my career and personal interests.

LGO Life

As I mentioned above, there are too many fun opportunities at MIT, and extra-curriculars fall into this category. Between art classes offered by the Student Art Association, mindfulness courses offered by MIT Wellness, intramural soccer, hockey, and air pistol, you have to be intentional with how you schedule your time. But it’s a great problem to have. There’s always something fun going on somewhere on campus or with your fellow LGOs. It’s up to you to seek it out.

Barret Schlegelmilch

LGO '18 interning at Boeing in Huntsville, AL

Engineering department Aeronautics and Astronautics

Undergraduate degree University of California at Los Angeles, Astrophysics

Company before LGO United States Navy

 

Why LGO?

To me, LGO combines the best of both engineering and management. Before discovering the program I was ambivalent about making a decision between the two degrees. Luckily, I didn’t have to choose. LGO is structured in such a way that you don’t lose out on any of the rigor or experience of either degree.

Curriculum

Despite having to satisfy the requirements for two masters degrees in two years, I found a large amount of flexibility in choosing my coursework. The degree requirements and course schedule are accessible. I was able to plan out all of my classes very soon after arriving on campus with the help of the LGO staff. I am looking to transition to the private space industry, and thus had very specific courses in mind. Fortunately, I found classes in both engineering and Sloan that supported this goal and satisfied the requirements for the degrees.

MIT Integration

If what you are passionate about isn’t available yet at MIT, create it. The entire school is extremely supportive of new initiatives and activities. I was fortunate enough to be able to lead a new Space Industry Club and host a conference. Other LGOs helped and several different departments at MIT sponsored us. I was also able to get more involved with the AeroAstro department by becoming co-president of their graduate association. The amount of opportunities and things going on at MIT can seem like a lot, but if you stay focused on what you’re passionate about it will never be overwhelming.

Meet our Students_Barret
Barret and his MIT student team at SpaceX during their action learning project.

Action Learning

The GOAL Team project was one of my favorite experiences at MIT so far. I was able to work with two other LGOs and an AeroAstro PhD student on a project with SpaceX. The project embodied everything that we had learned in our first year — from operations management to data modeling. We spent a week on site at SpaceX in Los Angeles learning about the entire company. It was also an invaluable opportunity to connect directly with LGO alumni at the company and gain firsthand experience in an industry I hope to work in after graduation.

LGO Life

Despite the demanding coursework and schedule, I still have time for extracurricular things. Aside from leadership positions in several of the official organizations and clubs at MIT, I am able to keep up one of my other passions: long distance running. A Sloan classmate and I have been lucky enough to receive funding from the graduate student council to represent MIT in several ultramarathons around the world. And of course, there is always a trip or informal meeting going on within the class. One thing’s for sure – you’ll never get bored!

Julian Demetz

LGO '18 interning at Maschinenfabrik Reinhausen in Regensburg, Germany

Engineering department Aeronautics and Astronautics

Undergraduate degree Technische Universität München, Mechanical Engineering

Company before LGO Vestas Wind Systems

 

Why LGO?

After I graduated from university in Germany, I already planed to earn an MBA after a few years of work experience. The LGO program represented the unique opportunity to earn both an MBA while updating my technical knowledge. The program enabled me to dive into fields that I was not able to cover during my previous studies. Since I was coming from operations and wanted to continue, the LGO program was (and is) a perfect fit.

Curriculum

I wanted to build a solid business foundation, so my MIT Sloan electives cover a broad range of disciplines. This includes classes within finance, economics, strategy, operations, and communications. I prioritize quantitative classes because I want to learn “hard skills” that are more difficult to acquire in a job later.

For my engineering courses, I want to fill gaps from my previous degree and study things I haven’t dealt with before. During my first Fall semester I took Principles of Autonomy and Decision Making, an artificial intelligence class that covers algorithms used in autonomous vehicles. As a mechanical engineer, I had little coding experience. This class was an excellent (and admittedly challenging) way to explore a new and currently very “hot” topic.

MIT Network

The LGO summer, the first semester of the LGO program, was very special to me. The LGOs are pretty much alone on campus and take all courses together. On the weekends, there were always social events, such as cultural dinners, parties, or a camping trip. The social aspects and the intensive team assignments and projects made the LGO summer an incredibly exciting experience. I have already built strong bonds and friendships that will last well after graduation.

On top of that, LGOs have easy access to both the MIT Sloan and the MIT School of Engineering community — each of them a strong reason to join MIT. Of course, you have to prioritize, but for sure there is no shortage of opportunities.

LGO Life

To balance schoolwork and projects, I take advantage of the incredible MIT sports facilities and intramural tournaments. As a soccer and general sports fan, I competed with my LGO classmates in soccer and ice hockey leagues. It was another great way to bond outside of the classroom. A personal highlight: I participated in a 200-mile relay race across New Hampshire with eleven LGOs, Sloanies, and Harvard students last fall.

I dedicate a lot of hours to coursework, but there is definitely time to accommodate sports, fun, and recreational activities. Even for a “normal” person, which I certainly consider myself to be.

Lee Evangelakos

LGO '18 interning at American Industrial Partners in New York, NY

Engineering department Civil and Environmental Engineering

Undergraduate degree Harvard University, Computer Science

Company before LGO Applied Predictive Technologies

 

Why LGO?

I first learned about LGO at an info session for the MIT Sloan MBA program. I was interested in pursuing an MBA and was looking into MIT Sloan specifically because I wanted to find a program that was strong in analytics. (MIT immediately came to mind!) LGO seemed like the perfect way to pursue my MBA. Once in the program, I realized that in addition to the engineering coursework, a huge upside of the program is the class itself. You make connections with people who have similar engineering backgrounds but a wide range of interests and experiences.

MIT Integration

One of my favorite parts of LGO is our integration with the rest of the MIT community. When I arrived on campus, I tried to go to as many talks and events within the broader MIT community as possible. I’ve found that my favorite way to integrate with MIT has been through group projects in engineering classes. In my Public Transportation course, we had group homework assignments that were quite hefty in terms of the hours we would spend working on them together. I got to know my classmates who were in the engineering school studying transportation, computer science, and urban planning.

Action Learning

This spring, I took the LGO Action Learning class (Operations Lab), which was a great chance to apply concepts I learned over the previous two semesters. I also got to travel and work with a new group of LGOs. We worked on a project for Goodyear in Luxembourg and got to work closely with the team there. It was a very interesting project but we also had a ton of fun exploring Luxembourg.

Partner Companies

The relationship with partner companies is a crucial part of LGO. I don’t have an operations background, so it has been enormously helpful to tour partner company plants during DPT and IPT and to observe the tools and considerations we learn in class. The partner company relationship allows us to learn about these industries more fully. The leadership team might give an LGO seminar one week, then we’ll visit the factory floor during a plant tour the next. Later, a team will do an action learning project with their planning group. This continued closeness to the companies is great for learning. More than reading a case study, you have the full picture of the company and the different strategic priorities it is balancing.

Rahul Nechlani

LGO '18 interning at Amgen in Singapore

Engineering department Mechanical Engineering

Undergraduate degree Indian Institute of Technology Bombay, Mechanical Engineering

Company before LGO Cipla Ltd.

Why LGO?

When I was choosing a master’s program, I wanted to find the right fit personally and professionally. I had five years of work experience in various roles. I managed a manufacturing facility to setting up the supply chain and operations systems for a multinational company. When I began my school search, I knew I loved operations management. I wanted the best program to prepare for a techno-managerial operations management role within a global organization. MIT LGO was exactly what I was searching for.

I also felt I would learn more and be happier in a small community of people. As an international student from India, it could not visit various schools to learn about their culture first hand. But the online interactions I had with LGO students made me realize that this was the community for me. LGO’s small class size gives you a chance to know each member of the community very well. At the same time, LGO gives you the chance to grow your network within the engineering and MBA communities at MIT.

Curriculum

I completed the LGO summer semester and the Sloan fall semester which mostly have a defined curriculum. During the fall semester, I took Managerial Finance which was a phenomenal learning experience. I gained a glimpse into how large corporations and financial markets function.

I also took a quintessential MIT product design class called Global Engineering. With other LGOs and engineering students, we designed an efficient and cost-effective cotton harvester for Indian cotton farms. This class brought home the basic MIT ethos of ‘mens et manus’ (mind and hand).

During my internship at Amgen, I have developed an interest in healthcare and the bio-pharmaceutical industry. I am planning to use my second year at LGO to take courses such as Healthcare Economics, Healthcare Finance, Case Studies in Drug Development, and classes in biomechanics. The freedom to design my own curriculum is going to play a unique role in my development as a business leader.

LGO Life

When you hear the words MIT + Engineering + MBA + 2 years, it’s normal to think that you won’t have time beyond academics. However, I have managed a great balance of academic, social, and extracurricular activities throughout the first year. I was one of the three co-chairs of the LGO Internship Committee, who helps to source and match LGO students with internships at partner companies. I also took on a leadership role for the Sloan Healthcare and BioInnovations Conference.

On the fun side, I coached and captained MIT Sloan’s first cricket team into the MIT Intramural semifinals while also playing on the LGO dodgeball and air-pistol intramural teams. I learned some salsa and swing dancing over the last two semesters through MIT’s ballroom club. I had a chance to visit my home in India twice and planed a great LGO trip to Costa Rica. Finally, I had a great time getting to know the larger MIT community through a series of social events at Sloan and MIT. And all of this has been manageable with the academic work across the first two semesters.

Clinton Rendall

LGO '18 interning at Amgen in Los Angeles, CA

Engineering department Mechanical Engineering

Undergraduate degree Rice University, Chemical Engineering

Company before LGO ConocoPhillips Australia

Why LGO?

Attending MIT is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to rub shoulders with the most brilliant scientists and faculty in the world. LGO bridges the gap between MIT Sloan’s management excellence and the MIT School of Engineering’s technical superiority. Solving the biggest challenges of the 21st century – such as climate change, disease, and poverty – will require multidisciplinary approaches. Where else can you attend the #1 engineering school in the world and earn a top-10 MBA at the same time?

MIT Network

Intramural sports are such a fun and rewarding part of the LGO experience. I had never played ice hockey before coming to MIT, but being a part of the LGO ice hockey team has been incredible. Great exercise and so fun! LGO students create teams across a variety of sports, and I’ve also enjoyed basketball and softball this year. It’s been a good way to meet other students outside of LGO and MIT Sloan.

Partner Companies

The partner company relationship and access to industry is something special and unique the program. Through plant treks, internships, and recruiting events, LGO students gain exposure to an incredible cross-section of U.S. and international industry. Plant tours at Boeing in Seattle, Nike World HQ in Portland, Oregon, and Raytheon in Andover, Massachusetts, were especially noteworthy. My internship at Amgen has given me an amazing insider’s perspective into one of the world’s largest biotechnology companies, where thousands of people come to work every day to help cure the world’s most serious diseases.

LGO Life

LGO life is different when you have a family, especially children. While many of your classmates head to the Muddy Charles in the afternoons, students with families head home to help their spouse with the kids. Homework time comes after bedtime. LGO can be intense for families. Fortunately, there are plenty of graduate students (at LGO and across MIT) with kids. We’ve formed a tight network with the other parents. Cambridge is great for families, with many employment opportunities for spouses and easy access to excellent schools, not to mention fun activities such as the Museum of Science, the Boston Children’s Museum, and two zoos!

Lila Fridley

LGO '18 interning at Indetex (Zara) in A Coruña, Spain

Engineering department Civil and Environmental Engineering

Undergraduate degree MIT, Chemical Engineering

Company before LGO British Petroleum

Why LGO?

There are many reasons to choose LGO, but I’ll highlight two that were especially important to me. First, completing both the MBA and MS degrees allows me to pursue my leadership and business goals without abandoning my technical foundation. I noticed in my previous work that the best leaders in our industry had all maintained a strong engineering expertise. Second, LGO is a small community within the larger MIT and Sloan networks. The LGO community is tight-knit and driven, fun, and intellectually curious. It’s a community that will help me navigate the challenging path of combining management, engineering, and leadership.

Action Learning

This spring I traveled to Shanghai to work with Shark|Ninja on an Action Learning project. I was able to apply a number of classes I too in operations, product design, and Organizational Processes. Our team analyzed labor-intensive manufacturing plants and observed workplace dynamics. The best part of the project was the opportunity to work closely with three students from our partner university in China, Shanghai Jiao Tong University. Rather than observing Chinese culture as a complete outsider, I got to know people and understand more deeply the cultural interactions, history, and experiences (not to mention better access to amazing food!).

Partner Companies

I was on the MIT Energy Conference‘s Content Development Team. It’s the largest student-led energy conference in the US. Before the the event, I was nervous that our content was too forward thinking – perhaps it wouldn’t appeal to the attending industry professionals. However, during the conference I bumped into several members of the National Grid leadership team, who immediately recognized me as an LGO. They told me that they were excited about the conference topics, were learning new ideas, and were eager to return to National Grid to bring concepts of innovation and change back to the stubborn energy industry.

These subtle connections with partner companies are not the only way we interact with the partner netowrk. Our seminar speaker series and networking sessions are equally valuable. It is a glimpse into how the LGO network truly fosters change, demonstrating leadership in academia and industry.

LGO Life

Life outside of class is a huge part of the LGO experience. The hardest thing is striking a balance that is right for you. One thing I learned early is to say yes as much as possible (Maintain a daily workout schedule? Yes! Compete at the Patagonia business case competition & go surfing with their executives? Yes!, Organize an all-day brewery tour for 55 LGOs & staff during DPT? Yes!)… but also to know when to say no (Ski trip when I haven’t seen my SO in a month? No).

Like life, LGO is a balance – it’s just a more intense (and fun) version.

Jeff Birenbaum

LGO '18 interning at Amazon in Shakopee, MN

Engineering department Civil and Environmental Engineering

Undergraduate degree George Washington University, Mechanical Engineering

Company before LGO Eaton Corporation

Why LGO?

LGO is the perfect match for my graduate education hopes and dreams. I joined an operations leadership development program after college. For graduate school, I wanted to build upon that baseline of knowledge while keeping up on my engineering background. I wanted a program at the intersection of business and engineering and gain the expertise required to be a business leader in a technical environment. The LGO program is perfectly tailored to that.

In addition, the opportunity to learn about partner companies through plant treks, LGO networking and recruiting, and a six-month internship was something I was excited about. But graduate school is a personal choice as well. I come from the Boston area, so I cherished the opportunity to return home for two years.

Curriculum

As a member of both the engineering and management schools at MIT, I found the most difficult part of the program to be designing a curriculum to fit all your interests. I wanted to deepen my supply chain and operations knowledge. I also wanted to take a few engineering classes outside of operations (and my comfort zone) and broaden my business acumen through finance and leadership classes.

So far, this has gone according to plan. I’m scheduled to take several supply chain classes as a part of the new LGO supply chain track in the Civil & Environmental Engineering department. In addition, I’m taking a class focused on enterprise database systems and a class called How To Make Almost Anything, where I’ll learn about PCBs, 3D printing, and machine design. On the business side, I’ve had some incredible classes that have been extremely valuable; two of my favorite classes to date have been with Adrien Verdelhan (Managerial Finance) and Miro Kazakoff (Communications for Leaders).

Partner Companies

Plant treks have been one of my favorite extracurricular experiences at LGO. We’ve visited the manufacturing plants and facilities of 17 partner companies across 7 states and 3 countries. We also have additional opportunities throughout the rest of the program to learn more about our industry partners. These visits gave me a unique understanding of the company culture and  provide insight into different manufacturing and operations facilities. They also provide a view into emerging technologies in different industries and different levels of evolution that companies have achieved in manufacturing and operations.

When we visited Amazon in Seattle, Washington, as a part of our domestic plant trek, I had already confirmed my Amazon internship. As a result, I was able to use that plant trek to begin making contacts. Those connections have proven very helpful during the evolution of my research into inbound supply chain. Partner companies like Amazon value the LGO relationship. LGO alumni have leadership roles in many of the partners too, and they take an active role in your future.

LGO Life

A good portion of the LGO experience is outside of the classroom. At the beginning of the program, our China Leaders for Global Operations (CLGO) partner program at Shanghai JiaoTong University came to visit us at MIT. I planned this visit with a few other classmates. We enjoyed a Red Sox game, hosted a traditional American house party, and spent time touring around Boston and MIT. The LGO class took over the MIT Sailing Pavilion for a Fourth of July party and we’ve competed in intramural sports (from Soccer to Tennis to Cricket).

I’ve also been involved in the MIT Sloan Sports Analytics Conference, the largest student-run conference in the world. I was in the logistics team, and this year I’ll run the ticketing portion of event. This engagement has been a fantastic addition to my experience. I explored something outside of operations while making new friends.