Vice President, Global Supply Chain
Andy Girard, who graduated with a BBA in operations management in 1992, has spent most of his career at Boston Scientific, working in a variety of roles across the organization. We asked him to share some insights from his journey.
ISENBERG: Tell us about Boston Scientific.
GIRARD: Boston Scientific transforms lives through innovative medical solutions that improve the health of patients around the world. As a global medical technology leader for more than 40 years, we advance science for life by providing a broad range of high-performance solutions that address unmet patient needs and reduce the cost of healthcare.
Can you describe a standard day in the office of Andrew Girard?
Working in a Global Supply Chain organization is incredibly dynamic and, to be honest, no two days are alike. While I sit in one of our offices in Marlborough, Massachusetts, I am incredibly honored to help lead teams in many different countries around the world. I prioritize opportunities to connect and support our colleagues from a development perspective whenever I can.
There has been a lot of disruption in supply chains over the last couple of years. And with that, I’ve spent a lot of time helping to work through issues and ensuring we have adequate supply for our customers. As we start to live into a new normal, we continually look at ways we can optimize our supply chain so we can be resilient and prepared for what lies ahead. I very much enjoy spending my time doing the latter.
What is your fondest memory from your undergraduate days in the Isenberg School of Management?
I graduated in the early 90s and the program then was relatively new. Our class was close-knit, as we only had about 20 students, so we really got to know each other personally. What I remember the most is definitely the talented faculty and how much we learned. Professors Iqbal Ali, Alan Robinson, and Anna Nagurney were among the absolute best. Our coursework was focused on continuous improvement, linear programming, and network optimization, and much of what was taught could be applied to my job right away after college. Many of my classmates had passed more than half of our APICS exams before we even graduated thanks to Professor Robinson and our local APICS student chapter. I still call upon those lessons more than 30 years later for my work as part of a global supply chain organization.
What are the three most important skills an OIM graduate needs to launch a successful career?
Be curious, be courageous, and do not settle for the status quo. Your functional expertise and leadership skills will develop along the way. Isenberg will prepare you well and you can be confident that you have the tools and are prepared to take on new challenges as you begin your career.
If you could send a message to yourself as a senior at Isenberg, what advice would you share?
Take advantage of every opportunity to network and learn as much as you can from others. Also, find out everything you can about the industry you want to be in, as well as the company you’re applying to—know its mission and values, and really get to know the leader with whom you will work. This will enable you to set a foundation that will help you grow as you start your career.