PEMCO’s USF Team Wins Intensive Engineering Competition

PEMCO World Air Services (PEMCO), announced its University of South Florida (USF) student team won the third annual USF Industry Consortium for Industrial and Management Systems Engineering (icIMSE). The USF icIMSE program partners with Tampa Bay area companies to offer opportunities for experiential learning through problem solving by teams comprised of both undergraduate and graduate engineering students.
A total of six student teams participated in semester-long projects, partnering with companies that included PEMCO, Raytheon, BayCare, TECO, Johnson Controls, and NDH Medical. The award winning PEMCO team consisted of five engineering students, two undergraduate and three graduate, managed by Ben Macre, PEMCO’s director of Lean & IT and Ryan Haines, industrial engineer.
“We were excited for the opportunity to participate in this year’s Consortium,” said Macre. “It was a win-win for students and company partners. The project provided the hands-on experience students are looking for while also giving our company additional resources and an outside perspective.”
Haines added, “It was a great opportunity to work with USF and have students work with our team to better the PEMCO organization by applying the concepts of Lean they’ve learned during their studies.”
The PEMCO project focused on rapid improvement workflow, which coincides with the company’s Lean initiatives. Students were charged with finding ways to reduce supervisor’s administrative time to streamline the company’s MRO activities.
The team of students gathered 65 hours of data to prepare for the event and worked 10-hour days, sacrificing their Spring break. They shadowed supervisors, analyzed data to see where time was being spent, and were able to reach multiple solutions to reduce administrative tasks. After spending a combined 300 hours on the project, the team was able to reduce supervisor’s administrative time by 33 percent.
“PEMCO was an amazing experience that helped me fine-tune my leadership skills by working with a diverse team to accomplish many tasks in a short period of time,” Brandon Rist, USF industrial engineering major and team leader said. Rist says he plans to pursue an engineering management degree once he receives his bachelor’s degree and gets a job.
On April 22, all student teams presented the culmination of their intensive semester-long project work at the third annual USF icIMSE. Projects were scored on quality of presentation, quality of work, and positive impact to the company. The winners were awarded with a plaque, small cash prize and bragging rights.
“We’ve enjoyed the opportunity to work with the University of South Florida, its faculty, and students, and hope to create more interest in the aviation industry for engineering students,” said PEMCO CEO Pastor Lopez. “We strongly believe our Lean strategy is a pillar in PEMCO’s mission to become a world class MRO.”

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