Education, experience leads to career in sustainable energy

Success isn’t always a straight line. Connecting the dots between interest, experience and
opportunity empowered Rob Meyer, MGT ’08, to enter and excel in the competitive electric
vehicle industry.

Now a global supply chain manager at Silicon Valley’s Tesla, Inc., whose mission is to accelerate the world’s transition to sustainable energy, Meyer works alongside some of the best and brightest industry leaders.

“We are truly changing the world. Alternative and sustainable energy sources are the future —
and it’s happening now,” Meyer says. “I am ecstatic and grateful to help make history.”
Meyer traces his success to his undergraduate business education at Oakland University.

“Education is absolutely the number one priority at Oakland,” he says. “It’s also important to
branch out of your comfort zone to get involved.”

Extending his comfort zone expanded Meyer’s worldview. As a sophomore, he enrolled in an
anthropology class about China that, in his words, “opened his eyes to how big the rest of the
world is.” During his senior year, the professor of his business management capstone further
encouraged his interest in international business.

“It was then I realized that whatever line of work I did, I wanted to work internationally,” he
says.

After graduation, he worked as a buyer at Continental Automotive, which led to an
international assignment in Shanghai, China. Once he completed that assignment, he
transferred to Ford Motor Company’s Purchasing Program Management group and worked
with its joint venture in China.

While working overseas, he learned how crucial having a thorough understanding of a country’s attitudes, cultures and histories are. This knowledge would prove vital for his next at Tesla where he found an environment that encourages innovative thinking.

At Tesla, I soon learned there are no boundaries in Silicon Valley,” he says. “You simply must
not be afraid to step outside of your box and take chances.”

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