Career Opportunities in Project Management

Project managers plan, organize, secure, lead, and control resources to achieve specific goals in a particular industry or organization’s project. A project manager must execute and close every project.

Usually project managers work within the following industries:

  • Construction
  • Engineering
  • Architecture
  • Computing
  • Telecommunications

Project Management Careers:

Getting a degree in project management will open the doors to many different careers. The following are some of the most common career choices degree holders go into:

  • Assistant Project Manager: This is an entry-level position in which you would work side-by-side with experienced project managers to help accomplish tasks and learn the ropes of project management.
  • Associate Project Manager: This is another entry-level position in which you would work with other project managers to oversee a project.
  • Business Project Manager: This is typically a corporate position that may work with clients, work within company infrastructure, or consult with other business projects.
  • Contract Project Manager: As a contractor you would not have the same responsibilities as a full-time project manager. Contract project managers must apply skills to new situations and work well with strangers.
  • Construction Project Manager: Project management within the construction industry involves supervision of construction projects. Examples of tasks may include supervising the building of residential homes, commercial properties, or other building projects.
  • Information Technology (IT) Project Manager: In this position you would work with computers, servers, and entire networks, including building and maintaining computer systems.
  • Product Manager: Within this position you would focus on a specific product, its manufacturing, promotion, and pricing.
  • Project Coordinator: This is another entry-level position that focuses on doing lighter tasks, such as planning and organization, that assist the main project managers.
  • Senior Project Manager: This is the highest position that you can obtain as a project manager. It takes about ten years of experience as a project manager to become a senior project manager.
  • Software Project Manager: This position is similar to an IT project manager, but it deals specifically with updating software. In this position you would need to oversee the development and improvement of existing and new software.

Career Tips

A degree in project management will definitely help your career prospects, but securing an internship while in school will greatly boost your resume and enhance your current skills. Check to see if your college or university offers an internship program. Spending a semester, if not more, interning at a local business or organization will prove invaluable as you seek employment. What’s more, internships provide networking opportunities. Meet as many people in the field as possible and ask for business cards because you never know when a connection you’ve made will lead to a job.

If your program does not offer an internship program, that’s okay. But you’ll need to do most of the legwork on your own. Talk to your professors about possible openings in the area or how to go about looking for an internship. Some instructors have connections to big companies. You can also search online for openings or post your resume on job search sites. You never know who might have a job or internship opening!

You might also want to consider signing up for webinars and attending conferences and job fairs designed for recent graduates or people in your field. Webinars are a great way to get useful nuggets of information without taking an entire course. Conferences and job fairs are designed for networking and professional development, so why not attend as many as possible? You’ll not only learn tricks of the trade, but you’ll mingle with like-minded people who share the same professional ambitions.

Project Management Degrees

Purdue University Purdue University offers online programs for a BS, MS, and MBA in Project Management so whether you are trying to start your career or take it to the next level, you will find a degree that matches your needs. Purdue offers over 100 online programs, so finding a project management degree program that suits your needs is as simple as searching online.
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American InterContinental University For students who need greater flexibility in their education, American InterContinental University has online classes for an MBA and BBA in Project Management. The BBA program is designed to teach students fundamental skills and management tools while the MBA is a great match for working professionals looking to develop their careers.
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Norwich University Norwich University provides a distance learning program for its MBA in Project Management degree. Norwich is America's first private military school and focuses on providing leadership and administrative training to both military and civilian students. Norwich is especially a great choice if you are currently serving and deployed across seas.
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Northcentral University If you want to further your career by earning a graduate degree, Northcentral University offers a DBA and MBA in Project Management. While both programs require an undergraduate degree to enroll, the MBA program takes only two years to complete and the DBA can be complete in three. These programs use career-oriented curriculum to achieve tangible skills and results.
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