A New Role for the Seasoned Project Manager


Advocate for Project Management Ready Youth



By William A Moylan, PhD, PMP, FESD, DTM

Eastern Michigan University

Ypsilanti, Michigan, USA


In the Fall 2020, the Project Management Institute [PMI] launched their newest certification program – PMI Project Management Ready®. This revolutionary certification program targets high school students to immerse them in the project management industry and connects them with a very passionate community of professionals – the PMI membership. This entry-level certification does not require prior work experience or previous education/training in project management. Young people will be able to fast forward their careers as they prepare for entry level positions in project management at an early age.

Although this PMI Certification fills a critical void both nationally and globally, implementing this program within the American high school education system is a certain challenge. The program implementation will require the Project Manager to serve in a new role – Advocate for PM Ready Youth. Further, initiating this new certification program will require adept leadership of the key stakeholders, especially the HS educators who will need coaching in their new role of the executive sponsor. This program presents exceptional opportunities for PMI Chapters and PMI members to outreach to high school educators and their local community.

This paper will address these challenges and opportunities. Items covered include a review of the PMI Project Management Ready Certification Program content, a discussion of the individual requirements to serve as an advocate for the project management profession, and insights from the author’s own advocacy journey initiating the PM Ready Youth certification program.


James R. Snyder, PMI founder and lifelong innovator, has long prophesied that the future of the universe requires a “generation of project-oriented people to solve project-oriented problems” to solve pressing global problems [Ginevri & Trilling, pg. vii]. This lofty yet realistic goal requires the integration of project management skills into the K-13 education system. The PMI Educational Foundation and an army of committed PMI volunteers have made great strides in providing project management awareness and training programs for youth, K-13 educators, and non-profit organizations. However, awareness is not enough for young people to enter the workforce; solid education programs for students with verifiable knowledge attainment is essential for project management ready youth.

If the reader is not already aware of PMI’s Project Ready Youth Certification program, check out the Out of the Box video entitled “Students Can Jump into Project Management Now with PMI Project Management Ready(https://www.pmi.org/certifications/pmi-project-management-ready)

This cutting-edge certification program was developed following sound project management practices by the PMI Certification Department. Surprised?

PMI Certification Program Development

The subject PMI Certification Study Item included the following parameters:

a) the associated courseware, companion study tests and certification exam would be suitable for the target audience [“early age” future project managers] as the recognized entry level credential to project management,

b) the course materials would be appropriate for the target audience [high school students] who can read and reason competently at a seventh-grade level,

c) collaborate with the right education services partner who can refine the input from project management subject matter experts [SME] into the required package [course materials, prep tests and certification exam] for the target audience and administer the sale, distribution and execution of the PM Ready Youth Certification program.

PMI chose Certiport to be their partner to provide the full pathway solution that educators can use to prepare students for this PMI certification. The PMI Project Management Ready curriculum is divided into four modules that introduce the young learners to:

    • Project Management Fundamentals and Core Concepts
    • Traditional Plan-Based Methodologies
    • Agile Frameworks/Methodologies
    • Business Analyst Frameworks

Candidates for the PMI Project Management Ready Youth Certification Exam will be expected to have key conceptual knowledge and principles of project management through at least 150 hours of instruction, which the noted 4-module curriculum and the practice tests adequately provide.


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Editor’s note: Second Editions are previously published papers that have continued relevance in today’s project management world, or which were originally published in conference proceedings or in a language other than English.  Original publication acknowledged; authors retain copyright.  This paper was originally presented at the 9th Annual University of Maryland PM Symposium in May 2022.  It is republished here with the permission of the author and conference organizers.

How to cite this paper: Moylan, W. A. (2022). A New Role for the Seasoned Project Manager – Advocate for Project Management Ready Youth; presented at the 9th Annual University of Maryland Project Management Symposium, College Park, Maryland, USA in May 2022; republished in the PM World Journal, Vol. XI, Issue VII, July.  Available online at https://pmworldlibrary.net/wp-content/uploads/2022/07/pmwj119-Jul2022-Moylan-New-Role-for-the-Seasoned-Project-Manager.pdf

About the Author

William A. Moylan, PhD

Ypsilanti, Michigan


William A. Moylan, PhD, PMP, FESD, DTM, is a Professor Emeritus with Eastern Michigan University – College of Engineering & Technology. He has extensive professional experience in all aspects of program and project management, including over eleven years internationally with the Saudi Arabian American Oil Co, and since 1983, has been involved in implementing information technology. He has degrees from Lawrence Technological University, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and Capella University. He is s active in a variety of professional societies and civic activities including American Society of Civil Engineers, Engineering Society of Detroit, Project Management Institute, Habitat for Humanity, and Toastmasters International.  He can be contacted at William.moylan@emich.edu