By Alexander Valdez
Pulse Staff Reporter
Palo Alto College’s Logistics Team won fourth place at the 37th Annual Operation Stimulus (OpStim) Conference and Case Competition held in Denver, Colorado, on Feb. 1 and 2.
OpStim is a two-day in-depth supply chain and logistics case study for colleges and universities to showcase their team’s critical thinking skills when solving situational scenarios based on real world logistics problems.
“I was so impressed. Everyone contributed to the presentation, and it truly mesmerized me when I saw the quality of work the team produced,” said Ronnie Brannon, Logistics program lead at Palo Alto College.
Palo Alto, the only community college present, competed against 19 teams from across the country, including Texas Tech University, Miami University, Syracuse and Penn State.
This year’s team consisted of four returning members, Emmanuel “Manny” Valdez, Larry Trejo, Mario Diaz and Ronald “Ronnie” Johnson. Two new teammates, Jake Reed and Alexa Martinez, also joined the team this year.
It was Palo Alto College’s sixth time competing in the OpStim event; however, it was the first time they had advanced to the finals where they would wind up with a fourth-place finish, the highest placement in the team’s history.
“A lot of our success is because of the commitment our students have to excellence in the classroom. They want to be the best logisticians possible. The students truly care, and they are very passionate about what they do,” said Brannon.
Not only is this a place for some of the brightest minds in the country to put their logistics knowledge to the test, but participants also gain insight on the industry from industry leaders and are exposed to possible internships and job opportunities.
“Companies are reaching out to share job openings with our students because of their experience in our Logistics program. We also implement certain software in our program that students can put on their resumes, so our students are very equipped for a future in the workforce,” said Brannon.
The Denver Transportation Club has been welcoming colleges and universities to compete in the OpStim showcase for 37 years.
“Since 1982, we’ve worked tirelessly to give young people more opportunities in the supply chain through challenging case study competitions,” wrote The Denver Transportation Club.
While at the event, students constantly gain knowledge on multiple aspects of the logistics industry, as well as learning from other students what tools and processes are best.
“Operation Stimulus was such a challenging experience, but at the same time, very rewarding. It was a great feeling to accomplish something that’s never been achieved before,” said sophomore Logistics major, Alexa Martinez.
The event is much more than just a competition. It is an opportunity for students to showcase their skills, but it is also a chance to progress as a logistician and prepare for a future in the workforce.
Thanks to the dedication of the students, the teachers and the attention to detail that the team emphasizes, Palo Alto College is now seen as a true contender amongst the bigger universities and a logistics force to reckon with in the coming years.