Industrial Engineering Student finishes 2nd in Student Paper Competition

Keegan Hendeerson
Photo Submitted

Keegan Hendeerson

Keegan Henderson, a senior industrial engineering student, placed second at the Institute for Industrial Engineers South Central Regional Conference held in Manhattan, Kansas February 25-27. Winners were determined based on the quality of their research paper as well as the delivery of their presentation to conference attendees. 

Henderson presented a paper based on his honors thesis entitled “Baseball Portfolio Optimization”. His paper explored the use of mathematical modeling techniques to assist baseball general managers with investing wisely in the baseball free agent market during the baseball off-season. Henderson explored a variety of performance metrics and modeled the statistical properties associated with player performance for these metrics. Using these player performance metrics, he constructed an optimization model designed to assist managers in building the best baseball roster subject to a variety of cost and position constraints. Henderson’s modeling approach allows organizations to carefully balance the risk of a large and expensive contract with the potential benefit of additional wins that a new player can bring to their team.

Back row: Keegan Anderson, Salma Boudhoum, Dr. Chase Rainwater, Dr. Ed Pohl, 3rd row: Colin Small, Silvana Suarez Paz, Andres Herrera, Alex Schussler, 2nd row: Deondre Taylor, Galo Chang, Jacob Hardin, Emily Daniel, Front row: Lujain Rawwagah, Jessica Hacker.

In all, 12 students from the University of Arkansas participated in the conference held at Kansas State University.

About the Institute of Industrial Engineers: 

The Institute of Industrial Engineers is the world’s largest professional society dedicated solely to the support of the industrial engineering profession and individuals involved with improving quality and productivity. It was founded in 1948 and is an international, nonprofit association that provides leadership for the application, education, training, research, and development of industrial engineering.

Industrial engineers figure out a better way to do things and work in a wide array of professional areas, including management, manufacturing, logistics, health systems, retail, service and ergonomics. They influence policy and implementation issues regarding topics such as sustainability, innovation and Six Sigma. And like the profession, industrial engineers are rooted in the sciences of engineering, the analysis of systems, and the management of people.


Tamara Ellenbecker, media specialist
Industrial Engineering


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