Wednesday, April 22, 2020
BU partnership with B. Braun Medical continues virtually
Bloomsburg University’s partnership with B. Braun Medical of Allentown is a special one that dates to the inception of the university’s Bachelor of Applied Science in Technical Leadership (BASTL) program. Braun, which currently employs four BASTL graduates, was one of the founding businesses that helped create the program in 2012. To further strengthen the relationship between BU and B. Braun, BASTL alum and current B. Braun supervisor Michael Greer ’17 and BU faculty member Julie Ambrose devised a way for students to learn directly from those in the business world. Students have visited Braun since the fall of 2018 as a regular part of their Instructional design and leadership capstone II classes.
“Reinforcing our classroom experience with a corporate site visit has been invaluable to the students. B. Braun employees show them how what they’re learning applies in a work setting,” Ambrose said. “We appreciate that support from B. Braun.” Leaning on their business experience, a panel from B. Braun advises BASTL students on their instructional design and leadership capstone II projects. The spring semester leadership capstone project is a prime opportunity for the students to showcase what they’ve learned through the program before graduation.
The students’ most recent visit scheduled for March 26 was nearly canceled because of the COVID-19 pandemic and shelter-in-place order from the governor. However, recognizing that the real-life experience of holding a large-scale virtual meeting would also have value, Greer and the Bloomsburg faculty worked quickly to change the event from an in-person meeting to a virtual one.
“Sometimes difficult situations can provide unseen opportunities,” Greer said. Approximately 20 students attended the event, and each project team had a chance to present and receive feedback from Braun’s advisory panel. And because it was virtual, students who normally couldn’t attend were able to participate. BASTL students from the following partner campuses were represented: Bucks County Community College, Community College of Philadelphia, Lehigh Carbon Community College, Northampton Community College, as well as Bloomsburg’s main campus.
“It was great hearing the B. Braun team’s feedback to the questions we had,” said senior Ethan Westerhold. “It provided us with valuable insight as we move forward.” In attendance were BU faculty members Jessica Briskin, Julie Ambrose, and Bryan Sidwar ’01/’15M.
Braun’s panel consisted of business unit manager Eric Leayman, production supervisors Bradly Lundquist ’19 and Michael Greer ’17, project engineer Thomas Sutliff ’17, and operational excellence leader Joe Marcone.