Manufacturing Excellence Leadership Program


Four outstanding students have been selected to receive the Seraph Manufacturing Excellence Leadership Program! Each student was graded based on their professional credentials including an example of work that they completed that demonstrated their knowledge of or passion towards working in the automotive industry. Their dedication and exceptional contributions have truly set them apart ~

Redford Hudson

UC Irvine

Data Science, 2024

Mariana Flores 

Michigan State University

Supply Chain Management Minor in Environmental & Sustainability Studies, 2025

Alec Cousino

Wayne State University

Global Supply Chain Management and Psychology, Honors, 2025

Kirin Raval

University of Michigan

Industrial and Operations Engineering with a Minor in International Studies, 2026

About Seraph:

Seraph, a global operation, and strategy consulting firm, was founded by Ambrose Conroy, who had the vision to create a firm that provides holistic solutions to complex business and manufacturing operations challenges.

With our ‘boots on the ground’ methodology, our team of operational experts has delivered tailored solutions to a wide range of clients, including Fortune 500 companies and ambitious start-ups. We collaborate with clients to turnaround, relocate, or restructure their operations, aiming to increase profitability and drive sales growth.

Seraph Operational Excellence Awards

In 2023, we embarked on a new initiative – the Seraph Operational Excellence Awards.

This initiative was born out of our deep passion for automotive manufacturing excellence and our desire to recognize and celebrate automotive suppliers across North America who excel in this field.

The selection process for our award recipients involves two steps. First, organizations underwent an online assessment in round one. Then, the top applicants proceeded to round two, which includes a complimentary in-person plant assessment conducted by the Seraph team.

On June 15th, 2023, we celebrated the winning organizations at the Seraph Operational Excellence Awards ceremony.

During this event, we applauded the achievements of five outstanding organizations across five categories: operations, quality, human resources, logistics, and overall best supplier. It was a truly remarkable and inspiring occasion.

Looking ahead, we are gearing up for the 2024 Seraph Operational Excellence Awards, where we will soon begin the search for five new winners in the upcoming year.

About the Externship

As an extension of the Operational Excellence Awards, we are introducing the “Manufacturing Excellence Leadership Program.” This program is designed for students aspiring to pursue careers in manufacturing who wish to explore the automotive industry’s offerings.

“Our aim is to nurture the next generation of manufacturing and operational excellence leaders through an immersive, hands-on externship experience that exposes students to top operational companies.”

Thomas Kowal, President of Seraph North America  

Who should apply:

We are seeking students who are studying manufacturing, industrial engineering, supply-chain and/or operations management.

We welcome applications from:

  • University graduates who are in their first year (of a two-year graduate degree program) or first or second year (of a three-year graduate program)
  • University undergraduates in their sophomore, junior or senior year.
  • Seniors in technical high schools.

Applicants must reside within the United States.

What you will receive:

  • $1,000 scholarship from Seraph paid directly to the student.
  • On-site plant assessment experience and an all-expenses-paid trip. See details under travel expenses.
  • 1-1 meeting with Seraph Leadership.
  • Networking opportunity with Automotive/Manufacturing experts.

What to expect:

Onsite Assessment

We will select four (4) winning students for the “Manufacturing Excellence Leadership Program.” Each recipient will receive an all-expenses-paid trip to one of the on-site plant assessments conducted by the Seraph team for the Operational Excellence Awards.

The assessment will give our winning students an up close and personal experience in shadowing the Seraph team, while we are conducting a plant assessment to determine the health of the organization across operations, logistics, quality and human resources.

This is a unique opportunity to be able to learn from operational consultants that have tremendous expertise in manufacturing. You will gain an inside perspective of a plants operations and the components that make up the health of an organizations processes.

These assessments are scheduled to occur between March 25 – April 30, 2024. We realize that as students you typically have graduation dates towards the end of April, so we will do our best to work with preexisting graduation dates.

Your Onsite Assessment Involvement

  • Each selected candidate will collaborate with the Seraph consultant team, following our proven established assessment model.
  • Your task will involve identifying and documenting an area of excellence within your host organization. The outcome will be a final report created by you, showcasing what you perceive as a true example of operational excellence. This report will serve as an educational tool that we may share with the broader manufacturing community by featuring it on Seraph’s website and LinkedIn. Portions of your final report may also be displayed on a large monitor during the cocktail area at the Operational Excellence Awards reception.
  • During your assessment, you will capture your experience by taking photographs within the assessment facility.

Be Our Guest at the 2024 Operational Excellence Awards

  • On June 6, 2024, we will be hosting the 2nd annual Operational Excellence Awards ceremony held at Chroma in Detroit, MI. All recipients of the Manufacturing Excellence Leadership Program will join the gala as our guest. This evening will provide the opportunity to mingle with industry experts from across North America.
  • We may decide to have one of our selected candidates deliver a brief speech about their experience. This speech will provide you with excellent exposure to a large network of industry contacts, allowing you to share your experience with our attendees.


Meet and Greet with our CEO or President of North America

Each selected candidate will have the opportunity to engage in a one-on-one discussion via Teams with either Ambrose Conroy, our CEO, or Thomas Kowal, our President of North America. This is a unique chance for you to connect with individuals who are passionate about giving back to the industry. You can look forward to sharing stories and discussing your future with them.


How to apply:

Create a submission packet (a single PDF document) to include the following elements:

  • Cover:
    • Full name, address, email address and phone number.
    • University / school name, what year in college or trade school you currently are enrolled, and degree / program being studied.
    • LinkedIn Profile.
  • Professional resume

  • Applicants should prepare a short writing, with an estimated 300-500-word count, to describe their interest in manufacturing and their area of interest in this field.

  • Additional component – share something that the applicant has created, one of the 3:
    • A case study of core operational concepts that were misunderstood or misapplied.
    • A case study of a nearby business or government program that demonstrated efficiency.
    • A short report about a project they’ve done that improved the efficiency of a system (could be through school, a club or just an independent project).

It is recommended for all additional component to include:

  • Name of project.
  • First and last name(s) of individuals that were involved in creating this piece of work.
  • Date created.
  • Include the reason this case study or report was created.
  • Include names of organizations and/or individuals that would need to be contacted in case permission to publish if needed.
  • It is recommended to stay within a 500 – 750-word count if using a Word Document, or less than 6 slides in Powerpoint format (either format saved as pdf and merged with the main file).

How to submit your application:

  1. Prepare Your Documents: Make sure all documents cited above are organized into 1 PDF file.
  2. Complete the Form: Fill out the online application form below.
  3. Upload Documents: Follow the instructions and upload your pdf file.
  4. Review and Edit: Before submitting, carefully review your application.
  5. Submit the Application: Once you’re satisfied with your application, click on the submission button.
  6. Confirmation: After submitting, you may receive a confirmation message or email.
  7. Follow Up: If you are selected, Seraph will contact you regarding additional steps, such as an interview or additional documentation, be prepared to fulfill these requirements.


Please note that these dates are estimates and may undergo slight adjustments.

  • Enrollment period starts on November 1, 2023 through February 29, 2024.
  • Finalists will be evaluated from March 1 – 8, 2024.
      • During this time, we may arrange an opportunity for you to present the information that was included in your submission packet (either live or virtual).
  • All winning candidates will be announced by March 15, 2024.
  • On-site plant assessments are tentatively scheduled to occur from March 25 to April 30th, 2024.
  • The 2nd annual Operational Excellence Awards ceremony will be held on June 6, 2024.

Program Guidelines:

  • Failure to meet any of the above outlined requirements in applying for this program is an automatic removal from consideration.
  • $1,000 scholarships will be distributed to each student upon conclusion of the Operational Excellence Awards Ceremony to ensure all guidelines of this program have been met. Scholarship distributions will take place within two weeks following the awards ceremony. Failure to meet these guidelines will result in not receiving the monetary scholarship.
  • Selected winners must be able to comply with the outlined expectations of this program, including traveling to the assessment location and attending the awards ceremony.
  • Each selected candidate will sign a talent release form, enabling Seraph to utilize any content developed around our candidates to be used on our websites (listed below) and/or LinkedIn.

Travel Expenses:

  • Travel expenses will be covered if travel is necessary. If the plant is local, travel may not be required.


  • The following will be included in travel expenses:
      • Round-trip coach airfare to the selected assessment location.
      • Hotel accommodations, at Seraph’s selected hotel, for the assessment.
      • Lunch at the hosted facility.
  • Traveling and other arrangements to attend the awards ceremony is not included, and is the responsibility of the student.

Manufacturing Leadership Program Application

Applications for 2024 are now closed.

If you’re interested in applying for future programs, please leave your information below, and we’ll keep it for future reference!

Get to know Seraph:




QUESTIONS: Any questions regarding “Manufacturing Excellence Leadership Program,” email

We hope you consider applying for this incredible opportunity!
– The Seraph Team