Global Automotive Purchasing & Supply Chain Network

AIAG and WSU's Mike Ilitch School of Business join forces on education initiative to fast-track talent into automotive industry careers

The Global Automotive Purchasing & Supply Chain Network provides degree and certificate programs for students and professionals to advance their knowledge and experience in the automotive supply chain.


The Automotive Industry Action Group (AIAG) and Wayne State University's Mike Ilitch School of Business are collaborating on an innovative new initiative to develop talent in global automotive purchasing and supply chain management. Called the Global Automotive Purchasing & Supply Chain Network (GAPSCN or "Gap-Scan"), the program helps provide community college, undergraduate, graduate and adult continuing education curricula with real-world lecture material, automotive case studies, best practices, knowledge assessments and standards.

"It is imperative that we accelerate the development of our next generation of global purchasing and supply chain professionals by providing them with a skill set and lexicon honed to manage the industry's increasingly complex business challenges," said J. Scot Sharland, executive director of AIAG, an organization providing industry-developed standards, allied tools, emerging best practices, and training in quality, supply chain and corporate responsibility.

"We have witnessed a strategic transformation of the automotive supply chain over the past 25 years," said Associate Professor John C. Taylor, chair of the Department of Marketing and Supply Chain Management at the Ilitch School. "The rate of innovation in vehicle design, advanced manufacturing and engineered materials has been truly remarkable and necessitated the creation of an unprecedented collaboration between industry and academia. We are fast-tracking future purchasing and supply chain leaders into industry assignments, saving time and expense often required to retrain entry-level professionals, and positively impacting employee retention rates."

AIAG will provide the program with guidelines, training and educational opportunities in areas such as global materials management, customs and supply chain security, export compliance, packaging, quality management, finished vehicle logistics, corporate responsibility and environmental compliance. WSU will give participants access to undergraduate and graduate courses and programs, executive education, thought leadership, basic and applied research, and internships as well as international studies programs currently offered in China, Italy, Brazil and Poland. Degree programs are available, including undergraduate majors and MBA concentrations in purchasing and supply chain management.

WSU and AIAG are also offering two supply chain management non-degree courses: (1) an annual certificate program providing an in-depth understanding of global supply chain topics and issues and (2) a one-week, automotive-focused Global Purchasing and Supply Chain Management Seminar that prepares purchasing and supply chain executives, senior managers and other professionals with the knowledge and skills necessary to significantly improve company purchasing and supply chain management contributions to cost and overall performance.

Taylor says WSU is committed to an automotive-oriented supply chain curriculum. "Southeast Michigan has one of the biggest concentrations of supply chain professionals in the world — especially in automotive — providing unparalleled interaction between university academics and auto industry professionals. GAPSCN will enhance undergraduate learning, allow for applied academic research on automotive supply chain topics and provide for outstanding executive education programs in supply chain."

For more information, contact John Taylor at 517-719-0275 or AIAG Customer Service.