By Alyssa Smith
Broad Student Writer
The Certificate Course in Railway Management, an executive education program offered by Michigan State University’s Broad College of Business, completed its 11th session in December, 2015.
The four-week course is offered to mid-level and senior managers who show potential for professional growth and leadership development. Each week, the participants meet in a different city, including Washington, DC; Pueblo, CO; Chicago, IL (the railway “heart” of the USA); and finish off the course in East Lansing on MSU’s campus.
The course covers a variety of topics pertaining to railway management and provides “accessibility to people you would have never had access to before,” according to Luisa Fernandez-Willey, a senior economist at Association of American Railroads, who attended the program.
Michael Carrino, an Amtrak superintendent, agreed, noting that the course “gave us the ability to meet with people you would have never met with in your daily work.”
The program explores knowledge and experience in team dynamics, leadership responsibilities, and creative thinking, both in the classroom and through field trips. Outings to railroad facilities, customers, suppliers, associations and agencies enhance participants’ learning experience.
Three teams were created to present proposals solving a current challenge in the railway industry to a board of senior executives, faculty members, and their peers. Each team was expected to look for new opportunities, highlight places for organizational change and new services, and expand on their solution in a 30-minute presentation and Q&A session.
Craig King, president of the R.J. Corman Railroad Group, closed out the program with a presentation on leadership qualities and the strengths of the industry. “The American railway industry is the backbone of American commerce,” he said. “I am proud that we are in this industry.”
Online registration for Session XII of the Certificate Course in Railway Management will open in January and will be available through August 31, 2016. Contact Nick Little for early reservations and more information.