“America’s Competitiveness in a Global Environment”
Panel Discussion & Networking Reception

On September 27, 2006, almost 200 Northern Illinois University (NIU) alumni and other members of the Rockford business community joined together at the NIU Rockford Campus for a panel discussion and networking reception.  The event was co-hosted by NIU’s College of Business and the College of Engineering and Engineering Technology. 

The panel discussion focused on ways NIU can help the Rockford manufacturing community and its workforce prepare for the new age of global competitiveness and at the same time expand business and manufacturing opportunities.  After the panel discussion, participants were able to continue discussions during a networking reception. 

PAnel discussion photoThe panel consisted of representatives from both the manufacturing and the academic communities, including: John Oller, executive director of the Manufacturing Alliance of the Rock River Valley; Denise Schoenbachler, dean of the NIU College of Business; and Promod Vohra, dean of the NIUCollege of Engineering andEngineering Technology and Richard Johnson, director of research and development for NIU’s College of Engineering and Engineering Technology.  The discussion was moderated by John Lewis, associate vice president of NIU Outreach and Regional Development.

Netweorking reception photoWe welcome any additional input about topics discussed during the panel discussion.  A questionnaire is still available on-line.  Answers to these questions will help NIU better address the issues which most concern those currently in the manufacturing workforce. 

View a PDF of the notes from the evening’s discussion.