A Long, Productive Partnership

You might call Ford Motor Co. an early adopter.

Ford is the longest-running sponsor of MAP projects, having first engaged in the program in 1994. The iconic automaker has since collaborated with Ross students and faculty on more than 50 additional projects around the globe.

Ford employees can reach out directly to apply for a MAP project. Ford Strategic Alliance Manager Amy Skehan explains, “We encourage people to sign up for MAP because we realize how beneficial these projects are. They’re a fast, valuable way to identify a problem and get a solution.”

The level of trust that’s been developed over the years between Michigan Ross and Ford has elevated the scope of projects and enabled the company to better identify future opportunities. And it’s not unusual for the organization to sponsor multiple projects in a given year.

In 2015, a Ford Credit MAP team designed risk management tools and a financing model for transportation businesses, while another Ford team worked on developing the strategy and value proposition for a new mobile app. That same year, another Ford team created a strategic framework for translating the company’s corporate sustainability tenets into actual business deliverables.

Skehan says, “MAP is very important to Ford because of the interdisciplinary nature. It’s also really great to have the teams on site. We work with other programs that aren’t on site, and you don’t get the same results.”