My original idea was to look up the lean manufacturing content that both Michigan State and the University of North Carolina offer their business school students and write up a clever comparison to predict the winner of tonight's championship game. Only I found out that Michigan State is all over lean from a variety of angles – many of them goofy academic angles that only a college professor could love. Nonetheless, lean appears to be a big deal in East Lansing. On the other hand, if the folks in the ivy covered halls in Chapel Hill have ever heard of lean, they keep the secret buried deep in their archives.
Michigan State has a guy named Michael Moore (no relation to the wacko Michigander who gets rich telling the liberal elite what they want to hear). This Michael Moore teaches classes in HR on lean, and hoshin kanri.
Or Professor Myron Miller who focuses a bit on lean product design. And there is Jeffrey McNish who actually learned lean out in the real world before taking it to the college campus. (by way of disclaimer, he learned it at Delphi and Oracle so his knowledge is pretty limited – but I give the Sparties an A for effort for hiring him.)
You can read a paper written by some MSU students who did a project on lean scheduling in the forging industry.
Another prof by the name of Tariq Abdelhamid is working on applying lean management and lean techniques to the construction industry. He is driving a gang called the Lean Construction forum to get more folks to teach lean construction in more colleges.
They offer courses in Total Quality Management and Lean Enterprise – requirements for a degree in Supply Chain Management.
The Michigan State med school is working on "bringing a lean and efficient pipeline for bringing the newest and most effective therapies from laboratory to bedside to serve populations at risk worldwide."
These are just a few of the hundreds of examples of lean in East Lansing. Michigan State University is all over lean, while the basic curriculum and faculty interests at UNC read more like a Harvard wannabe, with lean thinking nowhere to be found.
My favorite for tonight is clear.
Tonight I am lean and green … and white. Sparty ON!!!