PhD Title: Doctor of Philosophy in Engineering. Major in Logistics
What was your background and what made you decided to study for a PhD
Before joining WMG in 2013, I obtained a degree in Industrial Engineering and a Master’s Degree in Industrial Economics, both from well-positioned universities in Bogotá (Colombia). After being in industry for several years, I worked as a lecturer in operations management at different universities in Colombia, with one idea in mind: I was determined to follow an academic career path. To achieve this goal, I decided to do a PhD in engineering. The market for doctoral programs across the world is vast and diverse, and making a decision about it can be very difficult. I had only one certainty: I wanted a programme that was prestigious and global, but also applied. That's why I decided without hesitation to apply to WMG.
Tell us a about your research project - what were you working on and in what area?
The main focus of my research was on supply chain resilience. In particular, I studied how the implementation of a buffering strategy affects the level of resilience of military-supply chains operating in risky environments. The results of my research are very significant: if they are applied to military-supply chains, the direct effect on these can be measured in terms of lives saved; otherwise, if the same results of my research are applied this time to the commercial supply chains, the impact can be measured in millions of pounds saved.
How did you find the experience of studying for your PhD? Was it what you expected? Any advice for future students?
It was a very challenging experience from all perspectives, and definitely it was harder than I expected. Studying a PhD in Engineering requires all your time and energy during 4 years! Sometimes, especially at the very beginning, the pressure is so high that you think you will not succeed. This is the reason why a good dose of personal resilience is very necessary. Another issue is related to your ability to adapt. You must be prepared to adapt to the changes quickly, otherwise the chances of failure will increase dramatically. One last tip: seize your time!
Where are you now? What are you plans?
After completing my PhD in Engineering at WMG, I returned to my country and became Assistant Professor at the Military University New Granada in Bogotá. My goal is to become a leading academic in my area and/or provide consulting services to companies in logistics and supply chains issues.