Anisha Sinha graduated from San Jose State University with a BS in Management Information Systems (MIS). Upon graduating, she joined a two-year digital technology leadership program to explore her field’s technical and business job opportunities. The program allowed her to rotate roles every eight months within three departments. During this time, she discovered her passion for project management and embarked on an unexpected career journey.
Building a foundation in Project Management
“I started as my rotations as a project manager for software development, design, and research projects and found that we weren’t strictly applying foundational project management. We employed a hybrid approach depending on project type and size. It was a little all over the place. So I asked myself, where do I start and how do I build a strong project management foundation so that I could lead a team to execute projects?”
The Journey to professional upskilling
She was determined to learn the fundamentals of project management to build a successful career. Anisha started to look at programs and found the NYU Asana Project Management Certificate Program powered by Pathstream. Then she informed her manager of her decision and the time it might require from her. Her employer was supportive every step of the way.
“My employer offered education benefits, and Pathstream helped by providing me with the necessary documentation to secure reimbursement. I also didn’t anticipate the amount of time I would need to dedicate to the program. When I explained this to my manager, we built a schedule that let me set aside time at work to focus on the program.”
Enrolling in Pathstream and taking her first online certificate program
When she started the NYU Asana Project Management Certificate Program, Anisha was a project manager with no formal training. While she opted to attend office hours and a roundtable event to engage with classmates, she didn’t need much support from her instructor.
“The instructor had office hours every week, twice a week, which was great. I could reach the instructor via email. He was responsive and ready to answer my questions when I had them.”
She chose the Asana project management program because its curriculum teaches the principles and best practices from the Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK®). Learning these concepts and the technical skills would help her better design and manage projects in future roles.
The importance of learning project management skills
“Jumping into project management, as I did, can be difficult. Project managers lead without authority. They guide the team. Taking the Pathstream program helps you determine if you need to jump from a scrum meeting to a kanban board. You need to learn the methodology and terminology to apply it correctly and meet the needs of a project. Project effectiveness and scheduling are compromised when teams use the same methods repeatedly because they lack the foundational knowledge.
Anisha’s favorite part of the program was the way it was structured. Pathstream designed a project-based learning platform that lets you practice using project management tools while building your project portfolio in Asana.
“I was invested in learning the foundations of project management so that I could fill out a change management charter or know how to determine if I should use agile or waterfall. But what I found helpful and instrumental in equipping me with the right skills were the projects. I had access to templates that you would use in your day-to-day as a project manager. I liked learning the material, interacting with the platform, and applying what I learned to a project template.”
Earning a promotion and leveling up in her career after graduating from Pathstream’s certificate program
After graduating from the program, Anisha was promoted to program manager on Raytheon’s Transformation and Strategy team. The program is a departure from managing more technical and digital projects. Still, Anisha is equipped with the qualifications to design a program that keeps her team on track and motivated.
“Pathstream’s Asana program propelled my career forward. I learned the building blocks and technical skills needed to be a successful project manager. This, combined with my work experience, helped me get promoted to a program manager role after two years of serving as a project manager.”
Anisha’s final advice to future and current students, especially those on the front line:
“Learn the fundamentals before jumping into any career. The more you know, the more trust your team will have in you to lead projects. And, if you are serious about your career, invest in learning throughout your career. Take a certificate program and work out a schedule that allows you to dedicate your time to improving your skills.”
Ready to level up your project management skills?
Did Anisha inspire you to master your project management skills or get promoted? If yes, the first step in excelling as a project manager is learning foundational project management concepts. In addition to that, many companies are looking for candidates with proven abilities to lead, think creatively, and deliver under pressure.
In the Pathstream Asana Project Management Certificate program, you’ll enjoy personalized support with advisors to identify skills you already have and work through a curriculum to strengthen new skills. You’ll also benefit from a career coach and connection to job opportunities upon completion of the program.
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