Morgan Swink

Shaping the Field of Global Business

Eunice and James L. West Chair in Supply Chain Management
Executive Director of TCU’s Supply and Value Chain Center

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One of the world’s top product innovation management scholars, Neeley School professor Morgan Swink has spearheaded TCU’s global, integrated approach to supply chain management.

An expert in supply chain management and operations strategy, Morgan has become a leading driver of process and product innovation in his field. His current research focuses on companies that have won innovation awards and the tactics that made them successful.

Morgan is a doer.

Before becoming a professor, Morgan Swink spent 10 years as a mechanical engineer with Texas Instruments. He eventually decided to pursue his long-time goal to become a teacher, first earning his MBA at the University of Dallas then moving to Indiana University for his PhD.

“I wanted to teach at a business school, and honestly, the best fit for me was operations and supply chains because that’s where my experience was,” Morgan explains. “I tend to be efficiency oriented, and I like to analyze situations and try to improve on them.”

Morgan joined the faculty at Indiana University Business School and then Michigan State University’s Broad College of Business. In 2010, he decided to return home to Texas to join TCU’s Neeley School of Business.

“After being at big state schools for 20 years, the idea of a smaller, private school was very attractive,” he says. “I was ready to try to build something. The Neeley School’s supply chain management program had been around for 12 years, so there was an opportunity to move it from a well-respected regional program to a nationally and globally respected program.”

Since Morgan joined the Neeley School faculty, the undergraduate supply chain program has doubled in size and is now ranked 13th in the country. He also helped found the Master of Science in Supply Chain Management graduate degree program, now in its second year at the Neeley School.

In 2012, Morgan Swink was ranked one of the top 20 innovation researchers worldwide.

“We’re one of the few private institutions that has a top-20 supply chain program, and that means all the benefits of smaller classes and much more student-professor interaction,” Morgan explains.

“We’re also one of the few schools that offers what I would call an ‘integrated program.’ A student here is going to get a bigger picture of the overall supply chain, and that’s going to prepare them for leadership roles earlier at higher levels in organizations.”

“As organizations create a supply chain umbrella instead of functional silos, talent development becomes a vital component of their strategy,” Swink says. “They need integrated, end-to-end thinkers who understand all the parts of the company and see the big picture.”

As one of the few schools to offer supply chain degrees at the undergraduate and graduate levels, the Neeley School provides just that sort of talent.

Morgan served as co-editor-in-chief of the Journal of Operations Management until 2011, and he is currently president elect of the Decision Sciences Institute. On top of that, he is also the executive director of the Neeley Supply and Value Chain Center, which provides learning and networking opportunities for students.

“The mission of the Center is to develop partnerships with businesses,” he says. “The Dallas-Fort Worth area is what we call a supply chain hub because of its central location—it’s one of the largest ‘inland ports.’ DFW is home to more than 30 Fortune 500 companies, and more than 10,000 companies have headquarters here.”

The TCU supply chain program is also unique because it emphasizes active learning with a global focus.

“I just got back from Hong Kong, Vietnam and Singapore with our master’s students, and we’re taking approximately 30 undergraduate supply chain students to London this summer,” Morgan says. “We have more global and international content in our curriculum than most other supply chain programs.”

For Morgan, the ultimate driver of program quality is attracting the best students and growing the faculty to meet demand.

“We have more jobs than we have students,” says Morgan. “Every supply chain major gets a job and usually has multiple offers if they do well.”