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Meet Ruixia Shi

Fulfilling a Need in the Classroom and in Management

Sept. 16, 2014

Ruixia "Sandy" Shi wanted to come up with a better way to maintain warehouse stock. The journey to find that better way took her around the world, from China to the United States.

Shi, who joined Cal State Fullerton this fall as an assistant professor of management, had earned her bachelor's degree in industrial management engineering at Shanghai Jiao Tong University and was working for Philips Electronics Components in Asia as a spare parts manager/controller. But she wanted to come up with an automated system that would stay on top of supplies stored in warehouses.

"I wanted to study more in the field," she explains from her office in Mihaylo Hall. "I didn't have any idea of teaching at the time."

So she traveled to the University of Texas where she earned a master's degree in supply chain management and a doctorate in operations management. Supply chain management became one of her research interests.

She also discovered a love of teaching, spending two years in front of the classroom while completing her dissertation. "I really enjoy interacting with students," Shi says.

After completing her doctorate, Shi secured a position at the University of Richmond, a private university in Virginia, while her husband worked in Dallas. In 2012, her husband landed a post at Cal State Long Beach. "He loved California and the weather, and encouraged me to explore the area for a job opportunity."

And she found it. This fall, she is teaching principles of management and operations and focusing her research not only on supply chain management, but also on inventory control models and the strengths and strategies of supply contracts.

"I have taught almost three weeks at CSUF. I really enjoy interacting with my students," Shi says. "Discussing with such diversified students in and outside class is really fun. During these three weeks, I have learned that my students here are very busy.

"Most of them have to work to support their family and at the same time they have to study. And most of them are first-generation college students. So I feel that as a professor here, my teaching matters a lot to them, which may really have a big impact in their life. And this motivates me to prepare well and serve my students better."

Tags:  Academics & Research