University News

SCM Program Receives HECA Grant for Expansion, Cooperative Program

January 17, 2007

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MACOMB, IL -- An Illinois Board of Higher Education Higher Education Cooperation Act (HECA) grant awarded to Western Illinois University's supply chain management (SCM) program is opening doors for Illinois community college students interested in obtaining a degree in supply chain management, which prepares students in such areas as transportation, purchasing, warehousing, inventory strategy and global logistics.

Western's supply chain management program received the $62,100 grant for the project "Increasing Access to Supply Chain Management Instruction," which includes creating an introductory online course in SCM which will be available through John Wood Community College (JWCC; Quincy, IL) and made available to any college in the state participating in ILCCO (Illinois Community Colleges Online), as well as through Western.

According to John Drea, marketing and finance department chair, three additional upper division online courses in supply chain management will also be developed using HECA funds, with those courses delivered online directly from Western.

"We have created this program so community college students in the state of Illinois can gain a better understanding and a greater awareness of supply chain management and its varied career opportunities," Drea explained. "This program will allow those students to start their SCM preparation while they are attending their community college, and students could later complete the entire SCM minor online."

The first two courses, SCM 211 - Supply Chain Management and SCM 330 - Warehouse Management, will be available online beginning Fall 2007. Two additional online courses, SCM 411 - Global Supply Chain Management and MKTG 475 - Customer Relationship Management, will be made available in
Fall 2008, pending continuing funding.

In addition to the online program, the project also involves developing several 2+2 agreements between Western and Illinois community colleges in the area of supply chain management, Drea added.

"The project is a true partnership between Western and community colleges to meet the needs of students and of employers," he said.

Randall Greenwell, JWCC dean of Transfer Education, added that the SCM agreement is another example of John Wood and Western working together to the benefit of district residents.

"The primary responsibility of a community college is to provide education and training that will meet district residents as well as business and industry needs. John Wood Community College has a long standing cooperative relationship with WIU to satisfy this responsibility," Greenwell added. "Through this partnership, offering the curriculum online, students over the entire John Wood Community College district will be given affordable access to this much needed profession."

For more information, contact Western's department of marketing and finance at 309/298-1198.

Posted By: Darcie Shinberger (
Office of University Communications & Marketing