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including The Conductor, a special section of the Spectrum printed 4 times a year

Systems course chosen for GM engineers

By Liz Crumbley

Spectrum Volume 19 Issue 02 - September 5, 1996

The Systems Engineering Process, a course taught Benjamin S. Blanchard, chairman of the Virginia Tech Systems Engineering Graduate Program, has been selected by General Motors Corp. (GM) as one of three courses nation-wide to be included in the automaker's corporate strategy for vehicle systems engineering.

When GM identified a number of new corporate strategies earlier this year, the company's Technical Center in Warren, Michigan, conducted a nation-wide search for courses to support the strategies. In addition to the Virginia Tech course, two others were chosen to train GM engineers in vehicle-systems engineering: the Massachusetts Institute of Technology's Modeling and Simulation of Dynamic Systems and Georgia Tech's Simulation of Manufacturing Systems.

Blanchard, a member of the industrial and systems engineering (ISE) faculty, will teach the course to GM engineers via satellite TV from the Virginia Tech campus.

Currently, 28 students are signed up for the course at five GM sites in Michigan--Flint, Lansing, Pontiac, Lansing, Saginaw, and Warren. Blanchard said video tapes, textbooks, course notes, and audio conferences will be employed to supplement the course instruction. "If all goes well," Blanchard said, "this experience could result in a long-term association between ISE and the GM Technical Center."