Graduate Program Approved for Logistics, Trade and Transportation
Wednesday, March 24, 2010
Contact Tara Burcham, 601.266.5910   

In response to a growing demand among industry executives, The University of Southern Mississippi will begin offering a master’s degree in logistics, trade and transportation by the 2011 spring semester.

The  Mississippi Board of Trustees of State Institutions of Higher Learning (IHL) approved the new degree program last December. The master’s program will be administered by the School of Construction through the Center for Logistics, Trade and Transportation (CLTT).

CLTT Director Dr. Tulio Sulbaran said adding the new master’s degree is an exciting step in the evolution of the center. “We did research and found that a survey of industry stakeholders indicated an overwhelming support for master’s level programs. Seventy-five percent of respondents preferred master’s courses, a clear favorite over other degrees or certificates.”

Sulbaran said that the creation of the Center and its master’s program has been a team effort support by government, industry and the university. “The School of Construction and the Department of Economic and Workforce Development have been key in the Logistic, Trade and Transportation initiative,” said Sulbaran. “Through the hard work of professors Desmond Fletcher, David Marchman, Chad Miller, M.D. Sarder and Andrew Strelzoff, we were able to launch the new program.”

A $50,000 grant from the Mississippi Department of Transportation helped create CLTT in the summer of 2009. The center’s primary focus has been on the advanced management and administrative expertise needed in the private and public sector to address the global movement of goods through multimodal transportation – by rail, highway, water and air.

Industry leaders also recommended the new master’s program address the following trends in global trade:

* Innovations in the movement of containers, international distribution centers and multimodal transportation

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The shift from ship-to-highway emphasis to balanced rail, inland waterway and highway portions of multimodal operations

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Shifting trends in production and developing logistical systems for cargo transportation

*
Energy-related issues and the integration of new technologies to expand trade opportunities for small and medium enterprises

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A growing need to find more cost-effective ways of transporting increasing volumes of freight, both domestic and foreign

*
Use of technology in the transport of products from source to destination

Statistics show that the national transportation industry is already suffering from a lack of qualified job candidates – supervisors, logisticians and inspectors with master’s degrees. Within the Gulf South region, the annual shortfall is projected at 775 positions, including more than 100 in Mississippi.

“Our goal is to reverse that trend by offering a degree program that will meet these needs and demands head-on,” said Sulbaran. “Through innovation and education we will be preparing the next generation to adequately manage the ongoing challenges of logistics, trade and transportation.”

For more information about the Center for Logistics, Trade and Transportation and affiliated degree programs, call 601-266-6419 or visit www.cltt.usm.edu/

About The University of Southern Mississippi
The University of Southern Mississippi, founded in 1910, is a comprehensive doctoral and research-extensive university fulfilling its mission of being a leading university in engaging and empowering individuals to transform lives and communities.  In a tradition of leadership for student development, Southern Miss is educating a 21st century work force providing intellectual capital, cultural enrichment and innovation to Mississippi and the world.  Southern Miss is located in Hattiesburg, Miss., with an additional campus and teaching and research sites on the Mississippi Gulf Coast; further information is found at www.usm.edu
                                                                          
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