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Student Profile: Candace Mead, Bachelor of Science in Project Management
Now that she completed her Bachelor of Science in Project Management, Candace Mead was able to change roles within her company and transition into a supply chain compliance position. Candace said she chose CityU partly because the flexibility of online classes accommodated her full-time work schedule and being a mom. She’ll get to celebrate all her hard work at this year’s Commencement Ceremony. Congratulations to Candace and the rest of CityU’s Class of 2015!
City University of Seattle (CU): Can you tell us a little more about yourself? Where are you from?
Candace Mead (CM): I am 32 years old. I have a daughter, Alexa, who is 7 years old. I was born and raised in Tri-Cities, WA, where I still reside. I work full time for Bechtel National, Inc. as a Supply Chain Compliance Specialist. I have been with Bechtel for just over seven years. I started in engineering and now work in procurement.
CU: How did you find out about CityU?
CM: I found out about CityU while I was researching online programs and universities. I had also heard about CityU from some friends.
CU: Why did you decide to enroll in the bachelor’s in project management?
CM: I already had my associate’s in business administration and I was working in engineering when I decided to go back to school. I knew I wanted something more than business administration and I knew engineering was not an option for an online program, nor was it very appealing. I started looking at various program options and there was something about project management that felt right.
CU: What did you learn, and how will this degree help further your professional goals?
CM: I learned a lot from the project management classes at CityU. I was able to relate what I was learning to real life work experiences. The last year of my degree, I had moved from a design group at work into a Systems Engineering group. That last year really helped me gain knowledge and understanding due to the similarities between working in systems engineering and going to school for project management. It was all really exciting. It still is. Since I finished my degree, I decided to move from systems engineering to procurement at work. My new role will allow me to learn about the foundation of procurement and subcontracts. My education will help me be organized and structured and treat each objective as a project. Ultimately, I will be working with requirements management within procurement and subcontracts. And from here…the opportunities are limitless.
CU: Would you encourage others to study project management at CityU? Any advice for them?
CM: Yes, I would encourage others to study project management, if that is an area of study that interests them. CityU offers a variety of great online programs. I would encourage everyone to continue their education in any way possible. For me, I needed an online program that was flexible enough to accommodate my work schedule and being a mom. Project management was a great experience for me.
Advice – be active in your education, personal growth and learning. Check blackboard and emails often. Be aware of the resources provided within each class module. Read the syllabus and schedule and look at the weekly modules. Information is provided throughout the course, you just have to know where to look to fully understand all the class expectations. And participate! There is a lot to learn from classmates and their experiences.
CU: Was there anything about CityU or the degree program in particular that you appreciated or enjoyed?
CM: I really appreciated the counselors I worked with. They were great about getting back to me in a timely fashion and answering any questions I had.
CU: Are you planning to apply for jobs after you graduate? Where do you want to end up?
CM: My plan was to apply within Bechtel National, Inc. for jobs in procurement or project controls once I finished my degree – and I did just that. There was a supply chain compliance specialist role that was available after I finished my last quarter of classes so I applied. This role was ideal based on my current work experience and my degree. I plan to test for my System’s Engineering ASEP certification and my Project Management CAPM certification later this year. Then from there, we’ll see where my career goes – ideally in more of a subcontract or project management type of role.