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Employing a Program/Project Management Methodology to Define and Differentiate University-wide Roles and Responsibilities in Professional Studies

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2012 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


San Antonio, Texas

Publication Date

June 10, 2012

Start Date

June 10, 2012

End Date

June 13, 2012



Conference Session

Engineering Education for Modern Needs Part I: Non-traditional Learning Methods and Expanding Student Markets

Tagged Division

Continuing Professional Development

Page Count


Page Numbers

25.522.1 - 25.522.10



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Paper Authors


Mitchell L. Springer PMP, SPHR Purdue University, West Lafayette

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Mitchell Springer is an Associate Professor in technology leadership and innovation and currently serves as the Director of the Purdue University College of Technology, Academic Center for Professional Studies in Technology and Applied Research (ProSTAR) located in West Lafayette, Ind. He possesses more than 30 years of theoretical and industry-based practical experience from four disciplines: software engineering, systems engineering, program management, and human resources. He sits on many university and community boards and advisory committees. Springer is internationally recognized, has authored numerous books and articles, and lectured on software development methodologies, management practices, and program management. Springer received his bachelor's of science in computer science from Purdue University, his M.B.A. and doctorate in adult and community education with a cognate in executive development from Ball State University. He is certified as both a Project Management Professional (PMP) and a Senior Professional in Human Resources (SPHR).

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Mark T. Schuver Purdue University, West Lafayette

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Mark Schuver is the Associate Director for the Center for Professional Studies in Technology and Applied Research (ProSTAR) in the College of Technology at Purdue University in West Lafayette, Ind. He is responsible for the development and administration of the Weekend Master’s Degree programs, the Rolls-Royce Master’s Degree programs, and the growth of Professional Education programs in the College of Technology. Prior to joining Purdue in 2002, Schuver was employed by Caterpillar, Inc., for 35 years with assignments in product design, research and development, supplier management, quality management, logistics management, and various leadership positions. He holds an associate's degree in drafting technology from North Iowa Area Community College (1967), a B.S. in business administration (1990), and M.S. in management (1992) from Indiana Wesleyan University. Schuver is a member of the American Society for Engineering Education and serves on the Executive Board of the Continuing Professional Development Division. He is also a member of College/Industry Partnerships, Engineering Technology, and Graduate Studies divisions of ASEE. Schuver is a member of the National Collaborative Task Force for Engineering Education Reform and is a Lifetime Certified Purchasing Manager with the Institute of Supply Management (formerly NAPM).

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Employing a Program/Project Management Methodology to Define and Differentiate University-Wide Roles and Responsibilities in Professional StudiesProfessional fee-based studies, through a myriad of program offerings in multiple program andcurriculum formats, have the potential to significantly enhance the financial position of a collegeor academic department. Given this, colleges and universities have focused resources, bothfinancial and otherwise, on the centralization of administrative organizations targeting thoseprofessional adult learners who would normally not have an opportunity to participate intraditional programs. To create the multitude of potential educational opportunities, professionalprogram organizations are required to fully understand the strategic educational capabilities andthrusts of attendant academic departments. This understanding leads to regular and frequentdiscussions with the academic departments. During these many discussions with academicdepartments, providing signature area courses and curriculums for professional studies, it is notuncommon for our professional studies administrative organizations to have to defend overheadrates, identified as expenses against gross revenue and extracted from program profits/residuals.This paper will focus on the program management methodology employed to fully define anddifferentiate the roles and responsibilities of a professional studies administrative organization aswell as contrast the role of other university partners. In doing so, the unique role and attendantresponsibilities of each organization will highlight the value-added contributions of eachinterfacing organization. This presentation capitalizes on ten years of providing professionalstudies support to academic departments utilizing multiple program formats including distancelearning, distance hybrid and on-site programs.Program/project management is a discipline with a defined process, with multiple generallysequential activities, where each activity has an attendant product. The definition andsubsequent differentiation of roles and responsibilities of the many interfacing administrativeorganizations for professional studies lends itself to the many activities of the program/projectmanagement process and the product depiction of the process activity outcomes.Following the above process, the statement of work, stated and derived requirements, workbreakdown structure and responsibility assignment matrix are designed, developed andseamlessly integrated into a planning template for subsequent execution. This paper will identifythe process activities and products generated as applicable to defining and differentiating theroles and responsibilities of a professional studies organization within the construct of auniversity-wide system of interfacing support administrative bodies.

Springer, M. L., & Schuver, M. T. (2012, June), Employing a Program/Project Management Methodology to Define and Differentiate University-wide Roles and Responsibilities in Professional Studies Paper presented at 2012 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, San Antonio, Texas. 10.18260/1-2--21280

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