Taking his education overseas
Dan Collins uses education to lead Chinese company
Focusing on a college education and expanding his horizons prepared SC4 alumnus Daniel Collins to be president of Anda Industries Co. Ltd., in China.
Anda is an automotive brake parts supplier in Ningbo, Zhejiang Province, China, about 2½ hours south of Shanghai. There, Collins oversees more than 1,000 employees.
Collins grew up in Port Huron and graduated from Port Huron High School. He attended SC4 from 1991 to 1993. “I wasn’t ready to go to a university,” he said. “That’s why I came to SC4 to focus on my first two years.”
His career direction came more into focus by talking to his mentor at SC4, Professor Dr. Roy Rogers. That’s when he started to consider a career in business in China. He transferred to Michigan State and became an exchange student at Tsinghua University in Beijing.
Collins has worked in China since 1997. He worked seven years for General Motors and then for three years at Trico Products, an automotive parts supplier, before moving on to Anda.
Collins said the pace of business in China is incredible. He said it can take as little as six months to turn a bare field into a fully operational manufacturing facility, and he doesn’t see growth slowing anytime soon.
He lives in China with his wife and children. Collins said living in China is like living in New York City because of the size of the cities and the large international population.
Collins’ advice for SC4 students is to follow what worked for him: Get an education and explore job possibilities wherever they are located.
“Acquire a skill that is marketable and continually educate yourself,” he said. “And, go outside and get a different perspective.”
More about Dan
Dan Collins earned his bachelor of business administration degree from Michigan State and his master of business administration from Rutgers University.