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What is Project Management?

Many colleges and universities offer project management degree programs in New Hampshire and throughout the United States. This major can lead to a wide variety of exciting employment opportunities as companies and organizations in most industries hire professionals with knowledge and skills in this field. Notably, however, most jobs are likely to exist in construction, marketing, information technology, biotechnology, and sustainable energy.

Project managers are hired by companies and organizations to oversee various projects and supervise the workers assigned to them. Generally, their primary responsibility is ensuring that tasks associated with projects are completed properly.

In order to make associated processed run smoothly and efficiently, it may be necessary for these professionals to complete a wide range of duties. Specifics often vary by industry, but some of the most common expectations are developing comprehensive plans for funding, maintaining staffs, and coordinating work schedules. They are also likely to spend time identifying, reviewing, and selecting relevant vendors and/or consultants for jobs. Other common tasks include monitoring costs, identifying possible issues, troubleshooting problems that arise, and delegate responsibilities to other staff members. It’s worth noting that some positions also require project managers to interact directly with clients, while others are far more administrative.

Those interested in this profession should also realize that responsibilities tend to shift over time, depending on what phase of the project you are in. When starting a new assignment, project managers often prioritize tasks associated with planning. They will spend a lot of time assessing data, finding useful resources, generating cost estimates, identifying potential risks, and designating projected completion timelines. As work progresses, their attention typically shifts more towards reaching previously established goals. The final stage is often spent completing various administrative tasks such as ensuring that all financial statements, contracts, and other documents are organized properly.

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Online Project Management Education in New Hampshire

According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), employment for project management specialists is expected to increase by 7% from 2021 to 2031. This is about as fast as the average for all occupations and will account for an additional 70,400 job openings each year. Employment in other management occupations is also expected to increase by 8% from 2021 to 2031. This will account for another 1.1 million related positions becoming available each year.

Professional and business services is the second largest industry in New Hampshire. It accounts for $11 billion of the state’s revenue each year. Project managers are also likely to find employment in many of the state’s other sectors such as real estate, educational services, manufacturing, finance, retail, wholesale, entertainment, information, and construction.

As of May 2022, New Hampshire employed 3,700 project management specialists and 45,350 other management professionals. The annual mean wage for project management specialists was $92,100, while the annual mean wage for other management professionals was $132,220. Both of these wages are significantly higher than the state’s annual mean wage of $65,550 for all occupations.

There are many higher education facilities that offer degrees in project management, some of which provide opportunities to enroll remotely. While online programs tend to offer more flexibility, prospective students should keep physical location in mind when selecting colleges and universities. Academic institutions located in New Hampshire will offer the most geographically relevant curriculums. These options will help ensure you are prepared to meet the standards and expectations of local businesses and organizations.

Most project management professionals have higher education degrees of some kind. Prospective students may be able to study this subject at any academic level, with colleges and universities throughout New Hampshire offering associate, bachelor’s, master’s, and/or doctorate programs. Notably, those with more advanced degrees tend to have the best career prospects.

It’s important to realize that companies and organizations generally set their own hiring standards for project management job candidates. This means that, in some cases, it may be possible to obtain entry-level employment in the field without any higher education. Those with high school diplomas or GEDs will, however, have limited opportunities. Pay potential is also likely to be lower for these positions.

Online Associate Degree in Project Management (AS)

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Associate degrees in project management generally consist of 60 credit hours of coursework that take full-time students two years to complete. As undergraduate degrees, these programs often incorporate both general liberal arts and major-specific classes. Every curriculum is different, but those enrolled are likely to study various topics in communication, mathematics, and science in conjunction with professional communication and business law. Programs at this level are intended to provide a broad introduction to the field overall, as well as helping students develop strong academic foundations for future learning.

While they do exist, not all colleges and universities offer associate degree programs in project management. There are, however, many related majors that can prepare students for jobs in the field, as well as continuing project management education programs. Some of the most common related areas of study include general business management and business administration. While distinct from project management, these degrees tend to offer instruction on many of the same topics.

It's also important to realize that associate degree graduates are unlikely to qualify for jobs as project managers. Rather, individuals who complete these programs should be prepared to pursue entry-level employment as project coordinators, administrative assistants, and event planners. These opportunities are not guaranteed, however, as those with more education can also apply and employers tend to give preference to graduates with more advanced degrees.

Choosing to pursue further education can improve job prospects. Notably, associate degree graduates are often closer to obtaining traditional four-year degrees than they realize. Undergraduate credit hours are often transferrable, with most colleges and universities accepting up to 60 or 90 credits from other properly accredited academic institutions. Prospective students can submit past transcripts and have classes taken previously applied towards current academic requirements. This is particularly true for general education courses.

Online Bachelor's Degree in Project Management (BS)

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Bachelor’s degrees in project management generally consist of 120 credit hours of coursework that take full-time students approximately four years to complete. Prior undergraduate credits from advanced placement (AP) course examinations and/or previous degrees can result in faster graduation times.

As undergraduate degrees, a bachelor's project management program continues to incorporate both general liberal arts and major-specific classes. Curriculums vary, but those enrolled are likely to study various topics in communication, mathematics, and science in conjunction with principles of leadership, project scheduling and project scope control, and risk management and assessment.

According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), bachelor’s degrees are the education standard for project management specialists throughout the nation. Graduates may also qualify for jobs as operations managers, purchasing managers, product development managers, non-profit managers, emergency management directors, and environmental project managers.

It’s important to realize that bachelor’s degrees may not be enough to qualify graduates for occupations with significant supervisory expectations. To obtain these positions, which often pay more, it’s usually necessary to pursue further education by enrolling in graduate school. Prospective master’s degree students should be prepared to meet institutional admissions standards, such as minimum grade point average (GPA) and Graduate Record Examination (GRE) test scores.

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Online Master's Degree in Project Management (MS)

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Master’s degrees in project management generally consist of 30 credit hours of coursework that take full-time students one to two years to complete. It may also be possible to find an accelerated project management program, in which course requirements are condensed into shorter timeframes. These options can take as few as 12 months to finish.

At the graduate level, curriculums rarely incorporate undergraduate or general liberal arts classes. Students may, however, need to prove they have the business knowledge and technical skills necessary to study advanced topics in this field. Many colleges and universities require prior transcripts to verify that certain lower-level courses have already been completed so that you are ready to move on to learning more complicated concepts and how to manage more complex projects; a master's is an advanced project management degree.

Every institution is different, but those enrolled can usually expect to study various concepts related to cost and value management, procurement, and commercial laws and regulations. Additionally, students may also be given opportunities to select concentrations. These options can further tailor instruction, which is particularly helpful for those preparing for careers in project management sub-fields. Options vary, but some of the most common specialty areas include engineering, healthcare, marketing, and construction.

While master’s degrees are not a typical requirement for project managers, completing graduate school can drastically increase employment prospects. Not only are graduates more competitive when applying for jobs, but they often qualify for occupations others with less education do not. Graduates often seek employment as senior project manager, health services manager, construction project manager, information technology (IT) manager, project management consultant, and even in less project-oriented jobs.

A common alternative to studying project management is enrolling in a master of business administration (MBA) degree program. Although MBAs cover similar topics, instruction is generally provided from a business standpoint. As a result, graduates are often better prepared to work for large corporations and/or hold supervisory positions, as well as managing projects.

Online PhD Degree in Project Management (PhD)

Doctorates and PhD programs related to project management generally consist of between 90 and 120 credit hours that take full-time students four to seven years to complete. These are terminal degrees, representing the highest level of education available in the field. While similar, PhD and doctorate degrees are distinct from one another. Graduates often qualify for very different career opportunities.

The doctorate prepares students for work as executives at major corporations, but a PhD prepares students for employment in research and/or higher education occupations. Those enrolled in doctorate programs typically study advanced topics in leadership theory and applied action research, which gives them the knowledge and skills needed to help companies and organizations plan for long-term organizational growth. Individuals enrolled in PhD programs, on the other hand, receive instruction in multivariate analysis, curriculum design, and organizational theory.

In both cases, the first few years of enrollment typically consists of traditional classroom instruction and coursework. This gradually changes over time, however, as students begin to conduct more independent study, research, and writing. These degrees typically culminate in the presentation and defense of dissertations prior to graduation.

Become a Project Manager Professional in New Hampshire

The first step to becoming a project manager in New Hampshire is determining your ultimate career goals. Companies and organizations involved in almost every industry seek to hire individuals with expertise in this field. As a result, there are many different positions available, each with their own unique standards and expectations for employment. Identifying your preferred occupation or industry early will help you map the most direct course to success. With a little research, you can quickly determine how much education, training, and experience you need to become a qualified candidate. Additionally, it will be come much easier to select the most appropriate major, minor, elective courses, concentrations, and/or internship opportunities.

It's important to realize that not all project management professionals possess the same degrees. Studying related subjects is usually acceptable and, in some cases, can be beneficial. As long as your major corresponds directly with the type of work you intend to perform, you are free to consider a few different degree options. Some popular alternatives are business management and information technology.

Once you have obtained the necessary education, it may also be beneficial to pursue one or more relevant certifications. While not required for most professions, additional credentials can help you stand out among other job applicants. Not only do they demonstrate dedication to the field, but they can help highlight specific knowledge and skills you possess.

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The state of New Hampshire does not specify credentialing requirements for project management professionals. It’s up to individual organizations to establish their own hiring standards. As a result, you are generally free to select which project management certification(s) you want to pursue based on personal interest and/or career advancement. Some other considerations worth keeping in mind are cost and the amount of time needed to complete the corresponding certification requirements. It's also important to ensure that credentials are offered by well-known and reputable agencies. Most are provided by professional organizations and associations, such as the Project Management Institute (PMI).

Some popular certification options available to project management professionals include:

  • Project Management Professional (PMP)
  • Certified Associate in Project Management (CAPM)
  • PMI Professional in Business Analysis (PMI-PBA)
  • Program Management Professional (PgMP)
  • Portfolio Management Professional (PfMP)
  • PMI Risk Management Professional (PMI-RMP)
  • PMI Scheduling Professional (PMI-SP)
  • PMI Project Management Ready
  • Construction Professional in Built Environment Projects (PMI-CP)

Notably, PMI is the leading professional association for project management around the globe. It also offers memberships that can help students, new professionals, and seasoned experts continue their development and network with others in the field. The organization manages over 300 local chapters hosting events, topical sessions, and information meetups. New Hampshire residents can join the New Hampshire Chapter after becoming PMI members. This chapter is dedicated to helping project management professionals in the state to maintain and improve their knowledge and skills to stay competitive in the market.

Careers for Project Management Graduates

  • Art Director
    Art directors oversee and manage the development of imagery used in magazines, newspapers, product packaging, and/or entertainment productions. As leaders of their departments, they are often responsible for supervising and mentoring others more than completing their own projects. They spend time communicating with clients, reviewing ideas, establishing project timetables, maintaining associated budgets, approving completed assignments, and presenting finished products to employers. According to PayScale, art directors make an average base salary of $72,326 per year.
  • Accounting Information Systems (IS) Manager
    IS managers oversee IT professionals. This often entails hiring new employees for their departments, training staff members, reviewing worker performance, researching new business technologies, and managing associated budgets. Additional responsibilities include troubleshooting technological problems, administering computer system updates, delegating work orders, and installing hardware/software. According to PayScale, IS managers make an average base salary of $87,717 per year.
  • Digital Marketing Manager
    Digital marketing managers help companies and organizations promote their brands, products, and/or services on a variety of digital platforms. While they may actively participate in art design processes, they are generally more preoccupied with planning and overseeing larger advertising campaigns. It’s also common for workers in this profession to spend time analyzing data sets and identifying potential trends among intended audience members. This can significantly improve marketing results. According to PayScale, digital marketing managers make an average base salary of $71,038 per year.
  • Engineering Project Manager
    Engineering project managers are generally place in charge of teams of other engineers working on various projects as assigned by their employers. They are primarily responsible for ensuring that all daily operations run smoothly but can also perform cost analyses to better manage project budgets. It is frequently necessary for them to ensure that all contracted engineers, designers, and manufacturers coordinate their efforts appropriately. According to PayScale, engineering project managers make an average base salary of $97,842 per year.
  • Fundraising Manager
    Fundraising managers are responsible for securing donations and grants for their employers. They use varies tactics and strategies to achieve this, including developing and overseeing fundraising campaigns and events, communicating regularly with individuals known to have provided financial support in the past, and identifying and contacting potential future donors. According to PayScale, fundraising managers make an average base salary of $56,790 per year.
  • Supply Chain Manager
    Supply chain managers are responsible for overseeing various logistical details for their employers. Specific duties vary depending on the industry, but they often spend time analyzing operational performance, addressing any issues that arise, and coordinating delivery details with vendors and supplies. Another common expectation is ensuring that all shipping, delivery, quality, and safety standards are properly met. According to PayScale, supply chain managers make an average base salary of $84,999 per year.
  • Training and Development Manager
    Training and development managers ensure employees are sufficiently prepared to do their jobs. Using various tactics, they coordinate training and professional development opportunities that help workers learn new skills and further develop existing ones. They often plan, manage, and budget for a variety of training programs. They may also produce learning materials. In some cases, they are responsible for delivering the information. According to PayScale, training and development managers make an average base salary of $80,407 per year.
  • Business Professional

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