About The University of Akron Lean and Six Sigma Programs


Our instructors make us unique!  The University of Akron has successfully delivered Lean and Six Sigma programs for over ten years with the same instructors.  Brian Furlong (Lean) and Dan Sommers (Six Sigma) have more than 55 years of combined field and training experience.  Our instructors have traveled all over the world to deliver courses in manufacturing, healthcare,  service industries and government institutions.


Since our Lean Mastery program began in 2004, our students have reported a savings of $106 million on projects conducted during the class.  Six Sigma projects typically save 10 times the cost of the class.  Our Lean and Six Sigma programs have a very high rate of repeat business – many companies continue to send employees every year.


A major factor of successful implementation of Lean and Six Sigma is the deployment planning process.  Our experts will help develop this process with you by taking time to understand your business to develop the best approach with your company.


Our Lean Instructor

Brian Furlong is a seasoned, senior executive with 30 years experience in manufacturing and finance. Working domestically and internationally for major companies such as Emerson, Westinghouse, Invensys and National Westminster Bank, Brian has in-depth knowledge of manufacturing and administrative processes. He has directed projects to start up plants in England, Ireland, Thailand and Mexico and has completed acquisitions in England, China and India. He is a passionate advocate of Lean Enterprise, having successfully completed implementation in numerous facilities in the United States, Mexico, Europe and Asia. Brian has been recognized for strong organization-building and leadership skills and for his ability to achieve continuous improvement through high levels of personal involvement.  Brian has a BS degree in banking and finance. He has traveled extensively and has lived and worked in four countries.



Our Six Sigma Instructor

Dan Sommers has 22 years of service with General Electric Lighting.  During these years, he was a Design for Six Sigma Master Black Belt in Lighting Technology, a Six Sigma Black Belt in a high-volume lamp manufacturing plant, a product-line quality manager, a product-line quality project leader, a quality manager and a quality engineer.  He has a M.S. in Industrial and Systems Engineering, a M.S. in Statistics and a B.S. in Actuarial Science.