Longwood University was instrumental in founding a new statewide organization that will support collaborative research projects in logistics.

Longwood was the initial academic partner of the Commonwealth Center for Advanced Logistics Systems (CCALS), a collaboration between industry and Virginia universities that now includes four universities and two logistics companies. CCALS offers business and government agencies with significant logistics operations a research and development method that promises to cut costs, accelerate new discoveries and improve the technology, transportation, human and other systems that enable logistics. Gov. Bob McDonnell recently announced the organization’s formation.

"CCALS, which has been Longwood-driven since its inception, will offer students exposure to industry partners through supply chain-oriented internships in which they can earn generous stipends," said Dr. Jim Haug, assistant professor of management, who coordinates Longwood’s involvement. "In addition, selected faculty will be invited to participate in CCALS-managed research projects, with several options available including full-time summer assignments and part-time consulting."

The Longwood Logistics Center (LLC), directed by Haug and housed in the College of Business and Economics (CBE), was established in September 2012 to support future CCALS research projects, foster supply chain management courses and provide more depth to logistics-related activities.

"The LLC will develop students into supply chain managers of the future and have them work in internships as part of CCALS research teams," said Dr. Paul Barrett, CBE dean. "We are proud to spur workforce development for industry partners and the associated economic development that will result in the region and Virginia."

CCALS (www.ccals.com), originally called the Virginia Logistics Research Center, evolved from an initiative of the Crater Planning District Commission in Petersburg. It is modeled after a similar nonprofit organization, the Commonwealth Center for Advanced Manufacturing, which conducts research on advanced manufacturing technologies at a research center that opened in September 2012 in Prince George County, just outside Fort Lee, on the campus of Rolls Royce’s aircraft engine components plant.

CCALS’ other university partners are the University of Virginia, Virginia Commonwealth University and Virginia State University. The first industry partners are Logistics Management Resources and LMI, based in Prince George and McLean, respectively.

Central Virginia is home to the Army Logistics University at Fort Lee, the Amazon.com distribution center that opened last year in Chesterfield County and significant UPS and FedEx operations. "Logistics technology is driving most of the global economy, and many of the newest CEOs who have been named to Fortune 500 companies are logistics and supply chain management experts," said Barrett.

Leave a Comment