Ilitch School supply chain alumna Rachel Cyranski named to Ford’s prestigious ‘Thirty Under 30’ list

Rachel Cyranski, a 2018 graduate of the Wayne State University Mike Ilitch School of Business, was named one of the Ford Motor Company’s 2019 Thirty Under 30 fellows. The Thirty Under 30 program is an innovative philanthropic leadership course that matches young Ford employees with nonprofits to address challenging social issues. Launched in 2016, the program is run by Ford Motor Company Fund as part of Executive Chairman Bill Ford’s vision to develop young employee leaders working to serve their communities. Each class is made up of 30 diverse Ford employees under the age of 30. These fellows are selected from hundreds of competitive applications across the United States, Canada, and Mexico. 

Over the course of one year, participants take time away from their jobs in engineering, finance, legal, manufacturing, purchasing, human resources, marketing, communications and IT departments to better understand how nonprofits operate, then work collaboratively to address major issues affecting people. The course introduces young employees to design thinking – an increasingly popular process incorporating various mindsets, tools and methods used to define and address complex problems. 

The 30 fellows provide nonprofits with a different perspective on how to best engage new generations of donors and volunteers through technology, hands-on activities and other means. 

Cyranski worked specifically with Habitat for Humanity Huron Valley, a nonprofit organization that helps families build affordable homes and achieve a better and more sustainable life. She worked to help identify and provide community development to the West Willow Neighborhood of Washtenaw County. Through the design-thinking process, she identified a need for a new community center that would be able to serve as the bedrock and catalyst for transformational change within the West Willow community.  

“With open doors for all, the new center will offer free or low-cost community-centric programs and engage all community members by providing a collaborative, inclusive space,” Cyranski said. “This will encourage community members to work together sow the seeds for a safer and more beautiful neighborhood.” 

A member of the Ilitch School’s 2018 class of 25 Under 25 honorees, Cyranski completed internships at Lear Corporation, AIAG and Ford Motor Company while earning her degree in global supply chain management from WSU. She currently is in the second rotation of the Ford College Graduate Program and works in Ford’s Purchasing Program Control. 


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