The Supply Chain and Logistics Institute at Georgia Tech has partnered up with Amazon, a renowned leader in exemplary supply chain logistics and management to create the SCL Amazon Scholars program. This initiative is designed to foster innovation, encourage collaboration, and drive progress in the field of supply chain management at both the undergraduate and graduate levels.  

Olivia Arneson, Ariana Garbers, Naman Kanoi, and Xilei Zhu were selected for the 2023 Amazon Supply Chain Systems Design Fellowship.  

Nidhima Grover and Katja Meuche were chosen as Ph.D. recipients, and Kya Wiggins was selected as the 2023 undergraduate BSIE scholarship recipient.  

Naman Kanoi, a committed BS/MS student in ISyE, reflects on the profound impact of the Amazon Scholars program on his ongoing academic journey.  

The SCL Amazon Scholars Program has been an extraordinary catalyst in shaping my academic journey and my vision for my future career. One standout feature of the program is the invaluable exposure it provides to the state-of-the-art supply chain facilities designed by visionaries at Amazon”, Kanoi said.  

Similarly inspired by innovative educational opportunities and impactful academic influences, Ariana Garbers, a senior in the undergraduate program, shared her motivation for joining Georgia Tech, particularly her selected concentration.  

I've always been interested in making processes and systems flow better, which is core to Industrial Engineering. From the ages of 4 to 18, I participated in the Georgia FIRST robotics program, which exposed me to many kinds of engineering and technology. Through this, I learned and was mentored by current GT students. They told me about the hands-on engineering experience and project management different organizations provided. 

During her time, she “learned the basics about supply chain optimization during ISyE 3133: Engineering Optimization and fell in love with the mathematical models that can solve complex problems scientifically. The combination of such models with the people working in the systems truly motivates me daily”. 

Katja Meusch, a dedicated Ph.D. student in Industrial Engineering, was asked about the profound influence of the Amazon Scholars program on her academic journey and professional aspirations.  

“The SCL Amazon Scholars Program provided me with insights into how Amazon operates as a company and how it achieves its impressive delivery times. Even though I was already interested in industry jobs, working with Amazon has confirmed my decision to look for jobs in industry.”  

With a bachelor's degree in business administration and mechanical engineering, Meush made a significant career transition by pursuing a Ph.D. in Industrial Engineering at Georgia Tech.  

When asked about her choice of Georgia Tech, she explained “I applied to Georgia Tech and ISYE because of its high ratings in the field of Industrial Engineering. Since I was always fascinated by how companies make location decisions for warehouses and plants, I enrolled in the Supply Chain Track of the Industrial Engineering program. 

Xilei Zhu, also a student at ISyE, firmly believed that the SCL Amazon Scholar's program had a significant impact on his future goals and aspirations.  

Zhu asserted that, “My academic and professional experiences thus far have continuously been steering me towards a larger, more pressing goal: to combine supply chain efficiency with environmental sustainability. Companies like Amazon have already initiated steps towards reducing their carbon footprints, evident in the transition from traditional 'blue and white' plastic packaging to more eco-friendly, paper-based alternatives.  

By integrating advanced analytics, data-driven insights, and innovative design principles, Zhu aspires to design supply chain processes that are not only efficient but also environmentally benign. 

Through the SCL Amazon Scholars program, students like Naman Kanoi, Ariana Garbers, and Xilei Zhu are not only afforded the opportunity to procure the knowledge and skills required to excel in the world of supply chain logistics but are also able to foster a sense of responsibility and innovation. 

Authors: Nat M. Esparza and Atharva Anand Dave

Olivia Arneson

Ariana Garbers

Naman Kanoi

Katja Meuche

Kya Wiggins

Xilei Zhu