April 12, 2005

UCLA Anderson Executive MBA Team Advances to the Finals of the 2004/2005 Honeywell Aerospace Growth Challenge


Honeywell ChallengeLos Angeles—A team of three UCLA Anderson Executive MBA (EMBA) students has advanced to the final round of the 2004/2005 Honeywell Aerospace Growth Challenge, a technology transfer business plan competition now in its second year.  They will compete for a winner-take-all $100,000 prize when they present their plan to a panel of Honeywell Aerospace senior executives at the final round session in Phoenix, Arizona on April 30.  Additionally, the winning team’s university will receive $50,000.

EMBA students Anthony (Tony) Jackson, Ken Tran and Wei-Cheng (Wilson) Lin, all of the Class of 2005, will present their business plan, which recommends and outlines the development of an intelligent component system that will enable oil industry service providers to incorporate innovative new technologies in their recovery methods for oil reserves.  These state-of-the-art technologies will be needed over the next several years, in order to tap more oil reserves to meet growing demand for oil, as the current recovery processes will not keep up with demand.

Sponsored by Honeywell Aerospace, a $10 billion division of Honeywell Inc., the Honeywell Aerospace Growth Challenge engages participants to develop new growth business plans utilizing existing Honeywell technologies.  Business and engineering students from five top universities (Arizona State, Carnegie Mellon, Purdue, University of Arizona and UCLA) are invited to participate in the competition.  The teams are tasked with feasibility analysis and business plan development, and have access to Honeywell engineers and managers as they prepare their plans for presentation to company executives.  The competition’s primary goal of is to identify new business concepts and opportunities to apply Honeywell technologies beyond the aerospace industry markets.

In developing their plan, Jackson, Tran and Lin not only brought their diverse professional expertise to the table, but also the knowledge they’ve gained from their Executive MBA education.  UCLA Anderson’s EMBA program offers a learning model that emphasizes an integrated, cross-functional approach to management, proficiency in analytical problem-solving skills and development of strategic leadership skills.

In commenting on his experience with this competition, Tran said, “the Honeywell Challenge has provided me with the opportunity to “kaizen” my skills in generating business ideas.  Kaizen is a Japanese word that means continuous improvement.  Like Honeywell, our team believes whatever is worth doing is worth improving.”

When this year’s competition began, UCLA Anderson had four teams entered in the Growth Challenge:  two EMBA teams and two teams composed of students in the Fully Employed MBA (FEMBA) program.  Both EMBA teams advanced through the second round, as did one FEMBA team.  However, because each institution could have only one team in the final round, UCLA Anderson had to nominate one team to advance, and that decision came down to the strongest team at that point in the competition…and that team was composed of EMBA students Jackson, Tran and Lin.

Below are bio briefs on the UCLA Anderson/Honeywell Aerospace Growth Challenge team members:

Tony Jackson, who has more than 15 years of leadership experience in the healthcare industry, is currently vice president of specialty clinical services at Community Hospital of San Bernardino.  In addition to his formal education—he has a doctor of pharmacy degree—Jackson has an entrepreneurial drive that has led to a number of exciting ventures, including sole proprietorship in a postal, ship and copy center, lead partnership in a podiatric prosthetic manufacturing company and principal ownership of a consultancy specializing in optimizing operations of hospital-based ancillary departments.

Ken Tran, a focused, passionate and persistent achiever with more than13 years of experience, is the vice president of operations at Interbath, Inc.  With a master’s degree in engineering, Tran honed his operational skills on the front line of the manufacturing plant.  His workflow redesigns and innovate process re-engineering lead to substantial improvements in plant productivity and reductions in manufacturing costs.  His success in senior management is also marked by his entrepreneurial spirit, which led him to expand beyond his current role to provide significant contributions to new product design, product packaging design and innovative improvements in supply chain management.

Wilson Lin, Ph.D., is a high-technology business development consultant and a visionary product developer and business strategist in the high tech industry of fiber optics, semiconductor materials and photonic devices.  A committed scientist who holds five U.S. patents, Lin also has a passion for entrepreneurship that has led him to become an integral contributor and team member for four start-up companies.  At the most recent firm, Oluma, Inc., he was responsible for managing product cycles, developing business synergies with external partners and aligning strategic partner in the product delivery chain. 

About UCLA Anderson School of Management
UCLA Anderson School of Management is perennially ranked among the top-tier business schools in the world.  Award-winning faculty renowned for their research and teaching, highly selective admissions, successful alumni and world-class facilities combine to provide an extraordinary learning environment.  UCLA Anderson constituents are part of a culture that values individual vision, intellectual discipline and a sense of teamwork and collegiality.

Established in 1935, UCLA Anderson School of Management provides management education to more than 1,400 students enrolled in MBA and doctoral programs, and some 2,000 executives and managers enrolled annually in executive education programs.  Recognizing that the school offers unparalleled expertise in management education, the world's business community turns to UCLA Anderson School of Management as a center of influence for the ideas, innovations, strategies and talent that will shape the future.

Contact Information

Philip Little, (310) 825-9983, philip.little@anderson.ucla.edu

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