#ABetterU: Meet Drexel Online MS in Project Management Graduate Stephen Alderman
Being a full-time employee often rules out the option of committing to a full-time class schedule. Stephen Alderman knows this all too well.
As a young professional employed by the U.S. Department of the Navy, Alderman wanted to further his education. But with a demanding work schedule, attending college full-time was nearly impossible and taking classes at night seemed too daunting. He knew that he would have to find a school that provided the degree that he desired and in a flexible format.
Alderman began looking for an online project management degree program that would build upon the knowledge he’d gained as an industrial engineering major during his undergraduate studies. He quickly found that Drexel University was one of only a few campus-based institutions providing advanced degrees in project management online.
Ultimately, Alderman says it was Drexel’s distinguished faculty and national reputation for having a rigorous, yet practical curriculum that convinced him to enroll in the school’s online Master of Science in Project Management program.
“Anywhere in the country I go, Drexel is heard of and highly respected,” said Alderman. “I was very impressed with their accreditation and staffing. They have a solid group of professors with many years of experience and networking, and being able to learn from them and their real world experience was very important to me.”
Alderman says he learned a variety of strategies for managing both small and large-scale integrated projects in production environments. But, his proudest moment in the program was when he was praised by Drexel’s Project Management Program Director, Frank Anbari, PhD, for his analysis of the acclaimed case study series by the International Institute for Learning’s Harold Kerzner, PhD.
“It was great getting an A+ on the paper, but it struck me significantly when Professor Anbari sent me an email asking for my permission to send my analysis to Kerzner for him to review,” said Alderman. “Knowing that my analysis of Kerzner’s work was reviewed by the man himself, a founder of project management, will continue to be one of the crowning jewels of my experience at Drexel.”
Even though the majority of peer interactions were virtual, Alderman said he built strong and supportive relationships with his classmates.
“Particularly the fellow students that I had contact with were all extremely willing to go out of their way for each other, and with each other, to make the transition through the program as seamless as possible. Everyone was always willing to work through and that is something I will always remember and appreciate,” he said.
Alderman was hired as a production planner for the company Crosby Group-Lebus Manufacturing just three months after completing the online program. He says he is already putting his degree to work, managing resource and materials requirements while assisting in one of the biggest relocation projects in the history of the company.
“My entire core curriculum for project management has been extremely instrumental in what I do,” said Alderman. “I am in a role that I never expected to find myself in, but I’m very excited that I have. I can see the inroads in the future being in line with my career and ambitions.”
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