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Project management sector expects growth of 22 million new jobs by 2027

  • Date: Fri, May 10, 2019

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Project Management students have raised more than €500,000 for Irish Charities in the past 10 years through the annual charity assignment, including over €12,000 for Dublin Simon Community in 2019

Project Management students have raised more than €500,000 for Irish Charities in the past 10 years through the annual charity assignment, including over €12,000 for Dublin Simon Community in 2019 

Project Management is an in-demand career, and since 2005 the UCD Smurfit School MSc in Project Management has been helping graduates enter this rewarding and well paid profession.

By 2027, employers will need nearly 88 million individuals in project management-oriented roles, according to the latest PMI-commissioned talent gap analysis by Anderson Economic Group. Over the same period, the project management-oriented labour force, in seven project-oriented sectors, is expected to grow by 33 per cent, or nearly 22 million new jobs.

The UCD Michael Smurfit Graduate Business School MSc in Project Management equips graduates with the skills, knowledge and abilities to perform as effective project managers in any industry. With its practical focus and close links to industry and nonprofits, the programme is structured around delivering the skills required by top companies who come to UCD Smurfit School looking for talent, both in Ireland and globally. 


Offered in both full-time (one year) and part-time (two year) study modes, the programme supports those who want to dedicate a single year to achieving this degree, or those in employment who find a two year programme more in line with holding down a position while studying. 

Cohorts are multinational. There are typically students from more than a dozen countries in the class adding a huge layer of multicultural experience to the teamwork element of the experience, which comprises about half of the programme.

“The Smurfit MSc in Project Management was designed after extensive consultation with leading Irish and international companies, ” said Joe Houghton, programme director and cofounder of the programme, “Year after year our graduates take up PM and other management and graduate roles, excelling in their positions and seeing rapid career growth.  Many of our part-time students gain promotions or new roles while they are going through the programme, as the skills and tools they are exposed to make a tangible and immediate difference to their effectiveness at work from their first weeks at UCD Smurfit School.”

The most fulfilling feature of this programme is the inner confidence it imparts

Tim Peyton is a graduate of the 2018 to 2019 programme, and currently works for PwC's Portfolio and Programme Management team. “After careful consideration I decided the universal skills provided by Project Management would be the best platform for elevating my career,” said Peyton. “Once that decision was made, the easier choice was where I wanted to complete the course. UCD Smurfit School has a reputation as the leading business school in Ireland and has its place among the best in the world.” 

Talking about the programme and how it helped him prepare for the future, he said: “First, my employer actively recruits from UCD Smurfit School and the PM course. The MSc in PM taught me the fundamentals in project management to a level that I was instantly able to apply to my current role. It also allowed me to sit a number of exams with the Project Management Institute and pass the first time, furthering my PM qualifications.” 

Fergus Nolan is a Canadian who is just completing the one year full-time programme before heading back to Canada, and said that "one of the strongest feelings I’ve experienced through studying in Smurfit this year is the aura of professionalism which flows within its corridors.”


On the networking opportunities offered by the UCD Smurfit School MSc in PM experience, Nolan said, “Each semester has been filled with multiple opportunities to build my personal brand and connect with principle industry figures. A fine example of these networking opportunities can be represented by the accreditation ceremony between MSc Project Management and the Institute of Management Consultants  and Advisers. The night was an excellent opportunity from both an educational and vocational perspective.” All students joining the MSc in Project Management are accredited Graduate members of the IMCA for the duration of their studies and for one year after graduation.

The UCD Smurfit School experience is not just about great courses led by top academics and business people. Students are encouraged to develop their confidence, networks and links to commerce and nonprofits through the inclusion of external speakers in classes, and also through completing assignments in collaboration with Irish companies and nonprofits. 

UCD Smurfit School MSc in PM students have raised more than €500,000 for charity in the past 10 years

This year nine student teams raised more than €45,000 for a number of Irish charities, and also worked with eight different companies creating business plans for expansion opportunities, many of which are being actioned by the companies concerned. UCD Smurfit School MSc in PM students have raised more than €500,000 in the past 10 years through the charity assignment in their final taught semester.

Reflecting on what he has enjoyed most about the past year at one of the world’s top business schools, Fergus commented, “The most fulfilling feature of this programme is the inner confidence it imparts to you as you work your way through the journey. I feel strength in my judgements and belief in the capability of my skills, all of which is a credit to experiences I've had to face over the last nine months.”

Our graduates run projects and programmes in global leading companies, as well as their own, both in Ireland and further afield.


Examples of our successful alumni include: Ruth Scallon, who graduated in 2009 and is now head of Commercial Concessions at Dublin Airport after running the DAA’s enterprise and risk management function; Tara O’Sullivan, who came to Ireland from Australia to do the MSc in PM, and joined Microsoft, holding several senior roles with them since graduating in 2015; David Leyden was snapped up from the programme by EY in 2013, and then moved to CRH as head of their Global Workplace Programmes in 2015.

If you are thinking about a springboard to start your career or a jump-start to the next level, contact the UCD Smurfit School to discuss the opportunities the MSc in Project Management could open to you.

The UCD Smurfit School is ranked 23rd in the Financial Times' ranking of leading European Business Schools and is the only business school in Ireland, and one of an elite group of schools worldwide, to hold the "triple crown" of accreditation from three centres of business and academic excellence: EQUIS, AACSB and AMBA. UCD Smurfit School’s alumni communities include more than 84,000 professionals around the globe in 35 international chapters.

Applications are now open for the master of project management programme which begins in September. Learn more about the programme here

Original article posted in The Irish Times.

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