New School of Management Advisory Boards Connect Kettering University Students With Business Industry Leaders

Students work in a group in a campus dspace

Effective functioning of these two mutually-reinforcing complementary boards will ensure that the primary student service orientation and employer are at the core of the School of Management education strategy.”

Dr. Haseeb Ahmed, Kettering University Interim Dean of the School of Management

FLINT, Mich. – Kettering University has named 10 business and organizational leaders, including six alumni, as part of its first ever School of Management’s Industry Advisory Board (IAB), which will complement and coordinate with the elite group of faculty-nominated student leaders who are part of the Dean’s Student Advisory Board (DSAB).

In addition to providing strategic advice and vital connections for the University community and the DSAB, the IAB will help shape forward-focused curriculum and new program development. The board will serve as a critical resource for the School of Management, including advocacy for the school; input on industry recruitment trends; feedback on academic programs; sources of student co-op and internships, mentors, and jobs; and event speakers.

The IAB will help provide feedback for the dean and faculty by tapping into the diverse perspectives and expertise of the board members on the following topics:

  • Desired skill sets of graduates
  • Relevance, currency and quality of the curriculum
  • New programs and curricula

The corresponding boards will utilize formal systematic processes to obtain advice on the direction of the School of Management’s strategies and provide platforms for seeking insights from critical stakeholders (alumni, employers, academicians, entrepreneurs and current students) on topics shaping curricular, co-curricular and extra-curricular programs offered. The composition of these twin boards has been designed to ensure the generation of diversity in ideas and opinions that can enhance the brand positioning of the School of Management within the landscape of business higher education while effectively meeting the requirements of Industrial Revolution 4.0. 

The boards will actively involve and influence various facets of the School of Management, including growing enrollment, accelerating innovation and amplifying the impact of an intellectually vibrant learning environment, as well as fostering the climate of engaged scholarship where faculty would collaborate with industry and students in co-creation of knowledge.  

“In particular, the Industry Advisory Board can play a vital role in connecting industry with the school that expands the frontier of experiential learning, transformative Co-op opportunities, lifelong learning and leadership development while facilitating a conducive environment that amplifies creativity, innovation and entrepreneurship,” said Dr. Haseeb Ahmed, Kettering University Interim Dean of the School of Management. “I look forward to leveraging the expertise and experience of the board members to serve the need for new information and feedback in making a data-driven decision in our pursuit of continuous quality improvements.”

The members of the IAB are:

  • Greg Viener – President for Huntington Bank’s Mid-Michigan Region. He has a bachelor’s degree in business administration with a finance concentration from Regis University.
  • Jody (Sautter) Stidham ’98 – Managing Director in Deloitte’s Customer & Marketing practice and a leader in Deloitte’s Global Automotive Practice. She earned her MBA from Wayne State University and bachelor’s degree in management from Kettering University. She also attended Stanford’s Executive eCommerce Program.  
  • Tyler Rossmaessler – Director of Economic Development at Flint & Genesee Chamber of Commerce. Rossmaessler has a bachelor’s degree in economics from the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor. 
  • James “Jim” Bradley, Ph.D. ’82 – Hays T. Watkins Professor of Operations Management & Information Technology at College of William and Mary. He earned a Ph.D. in industrial engineering at Stanford University in 1996, an MBA from Dartmouth College in 1984 and a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from Kettering University in 1982 (then GMI).
  • Lori Flees ’93 – Senior Vice President & General Merchandising Manager - Health & Wellness with Sam’s Club. She holds an MBA from Harvard University and a bachelor’s degree in management systems from Kettering University (then GMI). 
  • Patricia “Pat” Groeneveld ’80 – Consultant at Grand Sport Engineering. In 2009, she retired from General Motors as Director of Materials Management Powertrain. Groeneveld earned a master’s degree in management from Aquinas College in 1988 and a bachelor’s in industrial administration from Kettering University (then GMI) in 1980.
  • Louis “Lou” Hughes, Jr. ’71 – Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of InZero Technologies. He earned an MBA from Harvard University in 1973 and a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from Kettering University (then GMI) in 1971.
  • J.D. Collins – State Director at Michigan Small Business Development Center. He earned an MBA from the University of Notre Dame in 1997 and a bachelor’s degree in professional management from Albion College in 1993. He also spent two years studying mechanical engineering at the United States Air Force Academy.
  • Niall Olling ’11 – Manager of State Relations at Fiat Chrysler Automobiles. He earned two degrees from Kettering University: a master’s degree in engineering management in 2017 and a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering in 2011.
  • Dr. Zhi Ni – President TusStar Ann Arbor. He earned an MBA from the University of Michigan in 2015, a Ph.D. in mechanical engineering from Wayne State University in 2004 and a bachelor’s degree in automotive engineering technology from Tsinghua University in 2000.

According to the IAB Charter, the formation of the IAB board complies with the programmatic accreditation requirement to implement a systematic process that determines the requirements and expectations of key stakeholders such as employers and alumni in the pursuit of fact-based continuous quality improvement.

The first IAB meeting is scheduled to take place in August.

The DSAB, which launched in January 2020 and has recently been meeting virtually, is focused on continuous improvement of strategic direction, offerings, programs and student-centered learning experiences in the School of Management. The board serves as a liaison between the student body and administration and plans events, such as the School of Management Speaker Series and Information Session for Business Minors (Business and Innovation & Entrepreneurship) and Accelerated Master’s Program. They are also taking lead roles in the planning and organization of the Virtual Panel Discussion offered by the KU Enrollment Management that is designed for admitted students and their families.

The DSAB Charter Members are: Emily Kurburski (Senior 3, BSBA), Lexie Bahm (Freshman 2, BSM), Spencer Ingamells (Senior 2, BME), Hugh Koester (Junior 2, BSBA), Tyler Bourassa (Sophomore 2, BSBA), Alexandra Broom (Senior 3, BME), Alek Saadeh (Senior 1, BME), Alicia Brown (Senior 2, BIE), Brooklyn Crowder (Senior 1, BSBA), Andrew Hayward (Senior 2, BSBA), Kyle Redies (Junior 2, BME)

“Effective functioning of these two mutually-reinforcing complementary boards will ensure that the primary student service orientation and employer are at the core of the School of Management education strategy,” added Dr. Ahmed. 

Kettering University's School of Management offers an integrated undergraduate Bachelor of Science in Management with concentrations in Technology, Business Analytics, Sustainability, Supply Chain & Logistics Management, and Innovation & Entrepreneurship. In addition, it offers minors in Business and Innovation & Entrepreneurship as well as a variety of master's programs including Operations Management, Engineering Management, Lean Manufacturing, Supply Chain Management and Business Administration. Notably, Kettering University was ranked first in the country in career preparation in a recent survey conducted by The Wall Street Journal.

About Kettering University
Kettering University, formerly known as GMI, is a Flint, Michigan-based private, nonprofit university recognized as one of the nation’s premier science, technology, engineering and business leaders in higher education. Dedicated to offering a curriculum that uniquely integrates classroom learning with experiential co-operative opportunities, Kettering consistently ranks in U.S. News & World Report’s listing for elite specialty schools. The University has more than 27,000 square feet of lab and research space used by faculty, students and industry collaborators, and boasts the only ABET-accredited applied physics program in the world. It also houses the first and only FIRST Robotics Community Center on a college campus in the United States. According to a 2019 analysis of federal data ranking 4,500 schools nationwide, Kettering University degree holders have the highest lifetime return on investment (ROI) in the state of Michigan. The University celebrated its centennial year in 2019. For more information, go to