A group of students from the College of Business at Athens State University recently toured Polaris Industries in Huntsville, Alabama. The tour was part of Dr. Kim Roberts’ Operations Management course. Polaris is a recognized leader in the power sports industry. Polaris designs, engineers, manufactures, and markets innovative, high-quality off-road vehicles including all-terrain vehicles (ATVs), the Polaris RANGER® and RZR® side-by-side vehicles, snowmobiles, motorcycles, and on-road electric/hybrid powered vehicles.
The Alabama manufacturing facility produces the Ranger® and Slingshot® vehicles and features multiple assembly lines with state-of-the-art technologies. The facility supports core processes including vehicle assembly, chassis and body painting, welding, fabrication, and injection molding. Students learned about the Polaris strategy, vision, and operations from Adam Hopkins in Human Resources. The group then toured the showroom floor to look at and sit in the facility’s products. Finally, students toured the manufacturing line to see concepts such as process design, customer requirements, and lean manufacturing put into application.
“We would like to thank the Polaris facility’s leadership for partnering with higher education. For many students, this is the first time they’ve seen the inside of a manufacturing plant and it’s an excellent learning opportunity,” says Roberts.
The Huntsville location continues to expand and projects to employ approximately 2,000 workers over the next few years.