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BComm Spotlight

Learn more about Asper student and UMSCO president Gilbert Eretchabor

April 12, 2024 — 

Asper BComm student Gilbert Eretchabor is currently working hard to revitalize the University of Manitoba Supply Chain Organization (UMSCO) as president and is a passionate advocate for the field. Supply chain isn’t something that Eretchabor pursued from the start of his degree, but some cogent advice from the Dean helped him see his future (and his past) in supply chain.

What are your majors, and why did you decide to pursue them?

“I’m currently majoring in management information systems (MIS) and supply chain. I enjoy understanding how information functions in a workplace and how everyone can be interconnected through effective systems, which led me to select MIS as my first major. I interned in my dad’s office while still in Nigeria, and I started to also see how supply chain works.

“Then, I had a meeting with Dr. Bruno Silvestre last semester when I was deciding between options for my second major. He explained how valuable it can be to understand not just the internal systems of the business, but also see what is going on externally, what’s happening with the whole supply chain. That breakdown made it crystal clear to me—I saw supply chain as a vital dimension for me to understand business.”

Inspired by Silvestre’s advice, and the renewed understanding of how attention to supply chain had also greatly informed his parents’ careers and business success, Eretchabor dove in. He got involved at Asper through networking and with UMSCO as president.

What are your goals with UMSCO? How do you hope the group can support students interested in supply chain at Asper?

“Ultimately, we want to increase students’ awareness of supply chain as an option. I feel like supply chain holds a lot of benefits as a major because whether you’re an accounting student or a finance student, you’ll likely handle costs and other factors that are related to supply chain.

“The foundations of supply chain can be tough—it is a lot of technical work and learning, but there is so much more to the field. I hope that UMSCO can offer a community of supply chain students at different points in their degree, where more experienced students can give first-years a sense of how much more there is to learn and how interesting the specialization is.”

Eretchabor is passionate about the value of personal and professional development. From his perspective, the best way to approach experiences that may fall outside of a student’s comfort zone (like networking) is to first acknowledge that you’re not supposed to be anything other than what you are in that moment: a student looking to grow, learn and develop.

What is the value of attending networking events as a student?

“When I went to IGNITE [hosted by the Young Associates], the draw was the opportunity to mingle with established business people, but I think the purpose is to help students get over the initial fear of networking with the business community. I was worried about not knowing enough about business yet and making a mistake when speaking to someone important.

“I realized when I went that they didn’t expect me to know everything already—they knew I was a student. And, from my perspective, I could use this opportunity to discover what kinds of competencies they might look for.”

He shares that he was pursuing culinary school before making the switch to Asper, aware that his passion for cooking could be supported by his BComm and enriched by his professional experience in the future.

As a student, Eretchabor is ambitious and passionate about his field; he values a balance of consistency and novelty, seeking ways to improve himself and pursue new opportunities while aiming to always bring his best (so far) to the table.

For those wondering what Eretchabor brings to the table with his culinary passions, the answer is Nigerian fried rice: “I think it’s a dish that can be hit or miss, but when I make it, it’s consistent.”

Supply chain excellence doesn’t end with the BComm. The Asper Master of Supply Chain Management and Logistics combines the best in industry with innovative scholarship, work-integrated learning opportunities and a vibrant local community.

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