December 5, 2013
Sandra Eksioglu has been chosen to serve as the vice chair of the Railway Application Section (RAS) of the Institute for Operations Research and the Management Sciences (INFORMS). In November, she will assume the role of chair for the following year.
Having attended almost every annual meeting, both national and international, since she joined the organization in 1999, Eksioglu credits this election to her dedication and involvement in INFORMS. In fact, the only time she missed a meeting was when her family gained a new member.
“I had a baby on Dec. 2,” Eksioglu said. “The meeting was in late November, so I couldn’t go. Otherwise, my students and I have attended and contributed to every annual meeting.”
Eksioglu currently serves the vice president of the Mississippi region and secretary of the Deep South chapter of INFORMS. At Mississippi State University, she is the faculty adviser for the student chapter of this association.
Last year, Eksioglu was the chair of the organizing committee for the RAS problem solving competition and a member of the organizing committee of the analytics research workshop for her chapter. She also served on the board of directors for women in operations research and management science forum of INFORMS for two years. In 2010, she received the INFORMS Moving Spirit Award in appreciation of her service to the MSU student chapter.
The members of the Railway Application Section of INFORMS took note of Eksioglu’s involvement in the organization and recognized the benefit of having her in a leadership position. She said that most members of her section are industry practitioners and that involving students and professors helps promote the exchange of ideas throughout the field.
“My personal goal when I joined the leadership of this section was to reach out to students and make them aware of the research opportunities that exist in this industry,” Eksioglu said. “I want to get them excited about joining the railway workforce.”
As vice chair, Eksioglu will assist in the planning of the RAS business meeting and other activities of the INFORMS annual meeting in San Francisco by booking speakers and scheduling presentations for the railway applications section. She will also be involved in the preparation for the problem solving and the paper competitions.
After the meeting, Eksioglu’s responsibilities with these events will increase when she becomes chair of this section. Although this task may seem daunting, she views the experience as an opportunity to improve her research in the field of transportation systems analysis and supply chain management.
“Having a good understanding of the business rules and problems faced by railway companies will help us conduct high-quality research,” Eksioglu said. “Getting involved with this section also helps expose us to interesting problems and establish contacts.”
The railway application section was founded in 1994 to facilitate productivity improvements and growth in the rail industry through appropriate application of management science techniques. INFORMS is the largest society in the world for professionals in the field of operations research, management science and analytics.
For more information about INFORMS, visit www.informs.org.
The Bagley College of Engineering is online at www.bagley.msstate.edu.
By: Erin Boozer