MBA student Westin Pulizzi named to Ford's prestigious 'Thirty Under 30' list

Westin Pulizzi, Wayne State alumni and current MBA student in the Mike Ilitch School of Business, was recently named one Ford Motor Company’s 2018 Thirty Under 30 fellows. He is part of the third cohort of young Ford employees since Ford Executive Chairman Bill Ford first launched the philanthropic leadership program in 2016. The program matches younger Ford employees with nonprofits to address challenging social issues. This year, Thirty Under 30 fellows will work on solutions to provide shelter and affordable housing to the community in Southeast Michigan and Ontario.

Selected from a pool of over 300 applicants, Pulizzi is working with Habitat for Humanity (Macomb County), a nonprofit organization that helps families build affordable homes and achieve a better and more sustainable life.

Pulizzi graduated from Wayne State in 2016 with a bachelor’s degree in Global Supply Chain Management, and was a recipient of Wayne State's coveted Howard A. Donnelly Leadership and Service Award. While at WSU, he worked as a peer mentor in the Warriors Business Community, where he helped tutor and mentor freshman business students. He also served a term as President of the Global Supply Chain Management Association (GSCMA), which allowed him to connect and work closely with other Ilitch School students and faculty.

 “I consider myself a natural leader,” he said. “Leading the GSCMA was the first time in my life that I was able to help lead an organization and watch it grow exponentially. It was a truly rewarding experience.”

Pulizzi said he was fortunate to have developed substantial relationships with Ilitch School faculty members during his time as an undergraduate. He cited Professor Lori Sisk and Dr. John Taylor, chair of the Department of Marketing and Supply Chain Management, as two people in particular who have been mentors inside and outside the classroom.

In addition to his academic achievements, Pulizzi committed countless hours to different volunteer organizations, including the American Red Cross. As president of the GSCMA, he also participated for two years with the Gift of Life Campus Challenge spearheaded by Professor Tim Butler and his wife Beverly.

Currently, Pulizzi works as the Global Lead Buyer for Climate Control Electronics for Ford. He said his responsibilities depend on the day.

“One day I might be negotiating a multi-million dollar contract, the next working on how to assist a supplier or Ford plant with a capacity constraint.”

For current Ilitch Business students, Pulizzi said it is important to excel and get involved on campus while in school, and to show a dedication to go further after landing a job in the field.

“Don’t be afraid to challenge the status quo,” he said. “Innovation begins when you ask questions.”

Pulizzi is expected to complete his MBA with a concentration in Innovation and Entrepreneurship in 2019. 

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