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The Old Dominion University College of Business and Public Administration announced recently that a new undergraduate major in maritime and supply chain management will be available in fall 2006. The major, within the bachelor of science in business administration degree program, will be the first of its kind in Virginia.

"For some time, we've been thinking about how the College of Business and Public Administration can further mirror the Hampton Roads economy," said Nancy Bagranoff, dean of the college. "This new major reflects that the region is one of the nation's most important distribution centers."

Students pursuing the major will be required to complete 120 credit hours, including courses in general education, business, international business, decision sciences, accounting, economics, marketing, finance, information technology and management. The specialized coursework includes international shipping, supply chain and logistics, shipping management and port management, along with other supply chain and logistics course options.

"We saw a need to educate managers to work for the port and maritime industries," Bagranoff said, noting that in the past few years, CMA CGM and Zim, two of the world's largest shipping companies, have located their North American headquarters in Norfolk. Additionally, AP Moller Co., which owns Maersk, the world's largest container shipping line, is constructing a container marine terminal in Portsmouth. It is scheduled to open in 2007.

The ODU program will build upon the university's Port and Maritime Institute and the graduate level four-course track and certificate program in port and maritime management, which has operated for 12 years. Wayne Talley, director of the institute, said that the new major will help meet the need for a skilled work force in the area.

"With a 10 percent annual growth in containerized cargo at U.S. container ports expected in the foreseeable future, the need for employees in all sectors of the maritime industry is great in both Hampton Roads and across the country," Talley added.

Many in the Hampton Roads supply chain and maritime communities have already endorsed the new program.

"A vital part of the success of the Port of Hampton Roads is the availability of a qualified workforce for all fields of the maritime industry, ODU is now prepared to meet these employment demands," said Art Moye, Executive Vice President of the Hampton Roads Maritime Association.

"From a port standpoint, this could not come at a better time," said Joe Dorto, CEO of Virginia International Terminals. "Logistics and supply chain management are the fastest-growing segment of our business. With the closing of the Ford distribution center, this institute goes hand-in-hand with training a much-needed work force in our business segment."

Since the Hampton Roads economy also relies heavily on railroad, shipbuilding and repair, cruise ship, warehousing and trucking businesses, the program will incorporate these industries into the curriculum.

Old Dominion is the second university in the country to offer a maritime management program at the undergraduate level and the only research university in Virginia to teach this curriculum.

This article was posted on: April 18, 2006

Old Dominion University
Office of University Relations

Room 100 Koch Hall Norfolk, Virginia 23529-0018
Telephone: 757-683-3114

Old Dominion University is an equal opportunity, affirmative action institution.