Bradley University has included quality methodologies as part of the industrial engineering (IE) curriculum for many years, receiving national recognition among employers and educational institutions. Under the leadership of the late Dr. Frank Gryna, who served as faculty in industrial engineering between 1962 and 1984, the department was known to produce engineers with excellent training in quality methods. Dr. Gryna, as some of the readers may recognize, was an associate editor of Dr. Joseph M. Juran’s Quality Control Handbook on through its fourth edition, and the co-author of the very popular textbook, Quality Planning and Analysis, through its five editions.
Dr. Gryna was a close associate of Dr. Juran throughout the latter’s career as a leading advocate of quality—a true quality giant—in the total quality movement in the U.S. and the rest of the world before his death in 2008. Several of Bradley’s IE graduates who received training from Dr. Gryna became leaders in the quality field in their own right. Joseph Tsiakals and Lawrence Aft, both fellows of the American Society for Quality, and authors of books on quality, are examples of such distinguished alumni.
In 1980, Dr. Gryna left Bradley to take a position as vice president of the Juran Institute, an international consulting firm on total quality management. However, the quality legacy that Dr. Gryna helped to nurture continued to flourish at Bradley and is reflected in the IE course curriculum. This legacy includes a strong foundation in fundamentals of statistics and statistical methods, and an appreciation for the implementation of quality tools in the larger context of a total quality system.
IE majors at Bradley must take Manufacturing Quality Control, the culminating course in quality. By the end of this class, students have in their toolkits all of the magnificent tools of quality, advanced tools of problem solving, an understanding of how total quality systems are planned and implemented, and an appreciation for the human side of quality and the need for strategic planning for quality. In short, they will be ready for Six Sigma Black Belt certification. In fact, there have been cases where some of our graduates acquired Six Sigma Black Belt certification without much additional training.
An important component of quality in education and development of future leaders at Bradley University is the student chapter of the American Society for Quality. Incorporated in 1986, this student chapter provides a vehicle through which students interact with the local chapter of ASQ, headquartered in Peoria. The Heart of Illinois Chapter of ASQ (hoiasq.org) encourages quality education, inviting student chapter participation through Student’s Night and the awarding of annual scholarships.
With the help of these organizations, Bradley University works hard to educate the future generation of quality professionals by offering them an opportunity for learning through experience. Many BU graduates are working in the quality field or quality-related fields in industries throughout America and the rest of the world. We will endeavor to continue this tradition with the support of our partners like ASQ and small and large industrial units which offer our students opportunities to perform and succeed. Our future rests with the next generation of leaders trained in the quality sciences. iBi
Dr. Krishnamoorthi is a professor in the Department of Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering & Technology at Bradley University and an American Society for Quality Fellow.