Pingting Li

Pingting Li

Degree: MSSCM ’14

Occupation: Solutions Consultant, NetSuite

Why did you choose this program?

Because of the convenience of being in the city and close to the big employers, there are a lot of opportunities. Quinlan’s Supply Chain Management Program was very unique because the direct competitor, DePaul, didn't have it. There was not a good supply chain program in 2013 anywhere else but Loyola.

I am industrial engineering-oriented with a business background. It was a perfect fit because it was in the business school, but had a very heavy industrial engineering and analytical background.

What was your favorite experience during your time at Quinlan?

My experience was very positive. In all of the classes, I really liked the ratio of professors to students. My academic advisor was Professor Nowak, so I worked directly with him to talk about my career options as well as my course choices. There was a set curriculum I knew to sign up for but he suggested that I take certain courses which was really helpful. I don’t think a lot of department heads at other schools would have taken so much of their time to help their students, and I really appreciated that.

I was also involved in the Quinlan Graduate Business Student Association. I was the Vice President of Finance, and we organized a lot of events during the 2.5 years I was there. It helped me gain more leadership experience and helped me get to know a lot of the students better. I got my first job out of Quinlan through networking.

How has the program helped your career?

It helped a lot. The first job I got after graduating was as an SAP IT consultant. Professor Nowak, in his Supply Chain Analytics course, brought in an associate from Tableau to do a very in-depth demonstration for us and that was very eye-opening. I didn’t even know I could get a job in the software field with a supply chain management degree. Ever since then, I knew I was interested in exploring the different software that Professor Nowak introduced me to.

I also took more operational research and analytics courses. All the quantitative research and data analytics classes helped me build my foundation for SQL and Excel analytic functions. I worked with Tableau and business objects mainly for my first job. Then I got a call from a headhunter at NetSuite, part of Oracle, and I transitioned there. All of this was because of the data analytics aspects introduced by Dr. Nowak.

I also worked for Deloitte while I was in school on their business services team. I helped build part of Deloitte.com, also because of the IT introduced by the supply chain program.

What advice do you have for current students?

Focus on the data analytics part of the course and the operations research. It is in very high demand. If students can combine the excellent supply chain aspect to the data analytics aspect, there are unlimited career options for them in Chicago. They can go in as a consultant, supply chain or purchasing analyst, or data analyst.

Don’t limit your career options only to traditional supply chain jobs. Expand that into everything that could be related, for example: software, database management, internal operations, as well as logistics.

In 10 words or less: Why Quinlan?

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