“Everything we touch has logistics in it because nothing got here by itself,” said Diana Davila, WiLL co-founder and chairperson for the Lone Star College Logistics Advisory Committee. “There are a lot of women in logistics, but the key part of our program is to help them grow and eventually lead the industry. We are starting something that empowers women from the beginning, while they are at Lone Star College.”
“Women are so natural at logistics, we do not even think about it,” said Brianne Crockett, WiLL co-founder. “We do tasks because it needs to get done. One of the goals of this program is to give participants confidence and a leg up on how to get into the industry, how to perform and how to excel.”
Interested Lone Star College students need to apply online by Nov. 1 at LoneStar.edu/WiLL. An is an essay and a referral letter is required. In its first year, the program is looking to accept 10 motivated, female students. Those students will have the opportunity to network with key players in the industry throughout the academic year.
“We get our job done by networking,” said Crockett who also works as a logistics superintendent with ExxonMobil. “Everything is who you know. You pick up the phone and you are always asking for a favor. With this program we are going to teach Lone Star College students what networking means from the beginning. Logisticians are a bridge, we are the ones who see the big picture and can understand how things will impact operations down the road.”
According to the U.S. Department of Labor, logistics is an important factor in a company’s profitability, therefore, employment is expected to grow as companies need to move products more efficiently, solve problems, and identify areas for improvement.
“The outlook for logistics jobs is enormous and always growing,” said Crockett. “All companies deal with logistics so these students have to learn to be able to interface with every type of industry: retail, engineering and construction just to name a few.”
“Logistics will never go away,” said Davila who also works as a Project Director at UTC Overseas. “You always have to move something no matter who you work for and there is always a job in logistics.”
WiLL is planning four events for accepted Lone Star College students, including a speed pairing event to allow protégés and mentors to initially meet, an industry tour so participants can see logistics in action, a panel with a question and answer portion to learn from other experienced women in the profession and a closing ceremony to congratulate the students. The program is also requiring quarterly, face-to-face mentor meetings.
“When I was trying to figure out a name for this program it was easy to find an acronym because WiLL encapsulated all the key points of the program,” said Davila. “Then I was telling somebody in my office ‘where there is a will there is a way’ and the name clicked even further. We are planting the seeds in the Lone Star College students who will become the next generation of logistics management.”
Lone Star College offers high-quality, low-cost academic transfer and career training education to 95,000 students each semester. LSC is training tomorrow’s workforce today and redefining the community college experience to support student success. Stephen C. Head, Ph.D., serves as chancellor of LSC, the largest institution of higher education in the Houston area with an annual economic impact of $3.1 billion. LSC consists of six colleges, eight centers, two university centers, Lone Star Corporate College and LSC-Online. To learn more, visit LoneStar.edu.