JUNE 13, 2015

Why I Got Two Master’s From CityU

Why I Got Two Master’s From CityU

by Jon Quigley, MBA, MSPM

Early on in my career, I used my engineering degree and background to work in the automotive world, eventually assisting radio frequency field studies for PACCAR in Mount Vernon, WA. I knew it was one of the most beautiful places on earth, so I sought a position at the Technical Center that allowed me to stay. After I received a job offer, I went back to North Carolina to propose to my then girlfriend and ask her to move across the country with me. She said yes, so I accepted the job. In just two weeks, we found a place to live in Mount Vernon, planned and held a wedding and I was on my way to start the job.

At the time, PACCAR had an arrangement with CityU for its employees, so I registered for the MBA in Marketing. The program was writing-intensive, and included both project and collaborative work. I enjoyed the on-campus atmosphere at the Everett branch.

When my son was born we moved back to the East Coast to be closer to family members, so I finished my MBA via distance learning. This was a very different learning environment for me, but it worked out and I was awarded my MBA in Marketing in September of 2000.

I was not finished yet. By then I had spent considerable time in product development. I knew the processes needed to be successful, and the marketing MBA taught me about customer requirements and distribution channels to deliver the product. I realized project management was the concept that tied all of these areas together.

I realized learning more about project management would help my career in the long run, so I started researching different programs. CityU had a Master of Science Project Management, which I compared to a Master’s in Project Management from Western Carolina. The difference for me came down to: one was a Master of Science the other was a master’s degree. So I enrolled again at CityU. The trepidation over the thesis was the most difficult for me, and like the MBA, the coursework was writing-intensive. I achieved my second master’s from CityU in 2007.

In the end, the writing I did through both of these degrees has helped define the path of my professional life. I have co-authored, and contributed to, more than 10 books on a variety of business and product development topics – including a contribution on Agile for the Encyclopedia of Software Engineering. I have also written scores of magazine articles on numerous topics, and I am presently a part-time instructor teaching Agile Project Management at CityU. I am also on the Advisory Board for Western Carolina’s Master of Project Management program and Forsyth Technical Schools Advisory Council. Both are honors I’m sure I would not have gotten had I not gone through the CityU programs. I believe these successes, at least in part, are due to what I learned at CityU, as well as constant learning I do personally.

My son occasionally asks me, who gets two master’s degrees instead of a PhD? I tell him, it is not over yet.


Interested in CityU’s Master of Business Administration or Master of Science in Project Management? To learn more, visit our website or email us at info@cityu.edu.


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