IISE SocIEty Impacts - COVID-19 Spotlights

Purdue's student chapter of IISE has been featuring Purdue IEs' efforts during the pandemic on social media. This is a collection of those stories.

June 8, 2020 : Deep Mehta & Aaryan JainDeep Mehta, BSIE 2021

BSIE, Class of 2021

Both students participated in the Virtual Pitch for Impact: Coronavirus (COVID-19) Case Competition hosted by the Communication Center in the Krannert School of Management. The goal was to create innovative evidence-based solutions in the form of a strategic recommendation to help solve the team’s selected COVID-19 issue. The team chose to redesign the future of grocery shopping by vertically integrating the grocery supply chain for increased efficiency.

Aaryan Jain, BSIE 2021"To solve this problem, we envisioned converting existing store footprints into online grocery distribution centers. For example, a store would now be 40% storefront, 60% fulfillment center. Bolstered by AI, the design of the warehouse could be based on data collected from orders about which items are most popular. Store employees will gather the items for the order and a delivery person will deliver them to the customer’s home. This new model will also result in more effective inventory management. In general, delivery services have no insight into a store’s inventory, and thus it’s common for a store to be out of many of a customer’s requested items. Through this new model, customers will be able to see a store’s current stock and won’t be able to order more than the quantity currently in stock. Furthermore, in a pandemic situation the store will be able to easily limit the quantity of critical goods that customers are able to purchase via the app, and thus we can avoid the shortages experienced during COVID-19. Online grocery ordering and delivery aren’t going anywhere. According to a study by the Food Marketing Institute and Nielsen, 70% of grocery shoppers will use online grocery ordering in the next five years. By creating an improved fulfillment system that is based on a warehouse distribution hub, we can increase capacity and sustain the long term demand that will be generated from the COVID-19 pandemic.”

The team finished as top finalists in the competition alongside team members Coleen Gabhart and Mofiyin Adegbite from Krannert.


June 15, 2020 : Claire SaleClare Sale, BSIE 2021

BSIE, Class of 2021

Claire spent the spring semester interning with IU Health in Indianapolis, IN. Working with the Business Analytics Mission, she completed projects centered around data analysis and building dashboards to help hospital leaders make key decisions. With the onset of COVID-19, she delivered data to hospital administration to prepare for surges. “I am interning with Indiana University Health in Indianapolis, IN. I am working with the Business Analytics Mission. My team sources and delivers data to hospital administration and clinical staff. We also develop predictions and strategy around possible surges as the state of Indiana reopens.”

June 22, 2020 : Matthew BoyleMatthew Boyle. BSIE 2021

BSIE, Class of 2020

Matthew is working as a Customer and Sales Analytics Intern for The Clorox Company.

“My main project revolves around a recession after COVID-19. I am going to be looking into shopper trends from the current pandemic and also the 2008 recession so that when a recession hits, Clorox is ready. Using the shopper data and also insights, I will be able to see what products consumers value the most and from this the hope is that the company will have these more sought after products more readily available. I am also relieving some people and taking on some of their work. Just like other companies, the employees of Clorox are working harder and on different things than ever before. With me stepping in, I can take on day-to-day work, some related to COVID-19 and some not, that will free up others working on projects important to the company and the public with the virus.”

June 29, 2020 : Yohanes Willy KurniawanYohanes Willy Kurniawan, BSIE 2004

BSIE, Class of 2004

Yohanes is a Manufacturing Supervisor for Siemens in Pomona, CA and is responsible for keeping the essential manufacturing plant safe and running.

“At our facility in Pomona, CA, we manufacture electrical distribution systems used in many essential businesses; energy infrastructures, communication and data centers, hospitals and clinics, just to name a few. So when the world provided us with the greatest challenge in our lifetime, COVID-19, the question was clear. How do we keep our employees, vendors and essential visitors safe while we maintain our operation?

"We implemented strict infection control procedures in compliance with the CDC guidelines such as: social distancing, work from home for those who can, increasing hand sanitizing stations in the facility and developed more rigorous cleaning & sanitizing procedures. Other measures we have implemented: staggering shift times to allow employees practice social distancing during breaks, requiring but also providing employees with face masks and temperature screening for employees and visitors before coming into the building.”


July 6, 2020 : Pranay ParekhPranay Parekh, BSIE 2020

BSIE, Class of 2020

Pranay is the Founder of EUME, a company that originally developed and sold backpacks but began creating facemasks due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

“I actually designed some really neat face masks, and happened to get them approved by the World Health Organization, as well as the testing laboratories of the government of India. I’ve now been selling them! As my startup manufactures backpacks, it was an easy transition in terms of infrastructure, but due to lockdown in India, procurement of raw materials was really, really challenging! Company name: EUME Position: Founder”


July 13, 2020 : Megan RodderMegan Rodder, BSIE 2019

BSIE, Class of 2019

Megan is a Quality Engineer at Ecolab.

“Part of my job is ensuring that any new products brought to our site are able to be produced safely & of high quality. With COVID-19, demand is shifting constantly. I work at the largest site in North America so we have the capability to help support this increasing demand. I have helped our plant set up to take 3 new products specifically to help disinfect against this virus. We hopefully will start producing all 3 of these new products this month! I used to think that our products were just soap, but they are so much more. We are keeping people safe, everywhere from hospitals to grocery stores and beyond!”


July 20, 2020 : Maitree ShuklaPranay Parekh, BSIE 2020

BSIE, Class of 2022

Maitree is the Columbus, OH Chapter Chair of the non-profit organization, Akshaya Patra USA.

“The Akshaya Patra Foundation is an NGO that provides fresh lunch meals to poverty-stricken children in India, who otherwise would have no source of meals due to their socioeconomic conditions. As the Chair of the Ohio chapter, I have raised significant funds to aid the children in government schools who no longer have reliable meals to eat at home. These funds also are contributed to aiding local hospitals in India that have a high number of COVID-19 patients. In June, the Ohio chapter along with other midwestern chapters, held a virtual gala that raised around $500,000 in donation; all funds will go directly to COVID-19 relief in India.”


July 27, 2020 : Kunal ThakurPranay Parekh, BSIE 2020

BSIE, Class of 2020

Kunal has recently graduated from the Industrial Engineering program at Purdue University.

“I have been helping provide test kits and PPE across the world to different governments and companies in order to support their local population."



August 3, 2020 : Giovanni MalloyGiovanni Malloy, BSIE 2017

BSIE, Class of 2017

Giovanni is a PhD candidate at Stanford University.

“I have been working on modeling the effectiveness of interventions to prevent the spread of COVID-19 in jails and prisons. People who are incarcerated are a vulnerable population during the COVID-19 pandemic, as social distancing is near impossible to implement in correctional facilities. Partnering with researchers from Stanford University and Yale University, we used data provided by a large urban jail in the U.S. to quantify the impact of mass release, increased single ceiling, and increased asymptomatic testing on the transmission of COVID-19. Now, advocacy organizations across the world are citing our medrxiv pre-print to improve conditions for people who are incarcerated.”


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