Project Management

An In-class Course
Course Description

project-management-iconProfessionals with expertise in project management are highly sought after as project-based work continues to proliferate both in scale and complexity, with organizations and clients demanding greater efficiency, outcomes, and proficiency. Wake Forest University offers a distinctive project management program that helps professionals become more accomplished, qualified, and effective managers in their fields. This is a 15–week curricula specifically designed to take students through the entire lifecycle of a project. The course will end with a capstone project aligned with the student’s chosen area of interest – with a sponsor from that industry – that will cover all aspects of what they’ve learned during the program.


The Certificate in Project Management was recently ranked 17th in the 2016 rankings of the Top 50 Best Value Project Management Certificate Programs by Value Colleges. Read more about this ranking here.

Top 50 Best Project Management

Career & Industry Outlook

According to the Project Management Institute (PMI), demand for professionals with project management skills has increased dramatically in the last decade with continued growth expected. PMI also expects strong salary growth (depending upon industry, experience as well as geographic location). The 8th Annual Project Management Salary Survey conducted by PMI found that PMP® credential holders can earn upward of $15,000 more than non-credential holders in many countries.

What you’ll learn:

  • Building a business case/feasibility study
  • Providing high-level direction
  • Setting clear expectations
  • Project planning (including risk management, communications planning, financial planning and resource management)
  • The art of negotiation
  • Conflict management
  • Project delivery (including execution, monitor and control techniques, understanding of industry tools and strategies for scheduling, budgeting and analytics)
  • How to close a project (including staffing strategies, handing over deliverables and post implementation review)

Who is this for?

Professionals with project management skills are highly sought after in a range of industries and professions including:

  • Energy sector
  • Financial services sector
  • Management consulting
  • Information technology
  • Construction management
  • Government contracting and procurement
  • Healthcare sector
  • Law and litigation support
  • Non-profit management
  • Public relations

Course Schedule
F16 Project Management Class Schedule

class 1:  9/8/2016 Jennifer Baker – Introduction & Initiation

  • Introductions & Course Overview with Q&A
  • PMI, PMP, Exam Preparation
  • Introduction to the PMBOK
  • Organizational Influences and Business Value
  • Project Governance & Funding
  • Process Groups & Knowledge Areas
  • Project Initiation and the Initiating Process Group
  • Industry, Certificate Project & Capstone project selection

class 2:  9/15/2016 Jennifer Baker – Initiation

  • Review from last week’s session, Q&A
  • Project Charter & Statement of Work
  • Stakeholder Identification & the Stakeholder Register
  • Business Case
  • Sample Test Questions
  • Review MS Project and building a project schedule
  • What happens now?

class 3:  9/22/2016 Chris Behling –Project Planning

  • Intros & Icebreaker Bingo
  • What is Project Planning?
  • Failing to Plan
  • Managing project documents (controls)
  • Gathering Requirements
  • The In-Laws are Coming for a Visit Team Activity (Case Study)
  • The WBS and Work Packages
  • Techniques for Estimating
  • The PERT
  • Creating the WBS and work packages for the in-laws
  • Moving from WBS to Project Schedule
  • Wrap up on concepts covered

class 4:  9/29/2016 Chris Behling – Project Planning

  • Review of last class concepts
  • Set up ACRONYM Flip Chart Tracker
  • Back into MS Project
  • The Network Diagram
  • Network Diagramming Individual Exercise
  • Critical Path Method explained.  Includes concepts of near-critical path, float/slack, forward pass, backward pass
  • CPM method
  • More about the Critical Path – multiple paths? Negative float? What is fast tracking and crashing – the latest new fad diet?
  • Show Me the Money!
  • Developing a budget estimate to go along with the schedule estimate. Cost management techniques
  • Wrap Up and Review of Acronym Board

class 5:  10/6/2016 Chris Behling – Project Planning

  • Recap from prior two weeks – Moving onto the “Soft Stuff”
  • The In-Laws are coming – revisiting the Work Packages and preparing the budget
  • Revisiting the Project Management Plan – the baselines are done (scope/WBS, schedule & cost) – What’s Left?
  • The Change Management Plan
  • Is the Project Manager a Human Resource Manager?  Sort of…planning for resources, staffing levels, RACI, Organizational Breakdown Structure and Resource Breakdown Structure
  • The In-Laws are Coming Case Study – creating the RACI
  • Team Development – Tuckman’s model
  • Defining Stakeholders – what are stakeholders and where do they come from
  • Using a Stakeholder Analysis Template
  • Wrap Up and Review of Acronym Board

class 6:  10/13/2016 Chris Behling – Project Planning

  • Recap from prior three weeks
  • The In-Laws are Coming Case Study – completing a Stakeholder Analysis
  • Communication Plan – what it is and how it is used
  • What Kind of Communicator are You?
  • This is Jeopardy!
  • Sample Test Questions
  • Wrap Up and Review of Acronym Board
  • What happens now?

class 7:  10/20/2016 Bill Davis – Negotiation

  • Negotiation Ice-Breaker
  • Negotiation:  The Fundamentals
  • Negotiation Strategy and Planning
  • Executing the Plan
  • How Are You Perceived by your Project Client?

class 8:  10/27/2016 Chris Bolick – Project Execution

  • Implementing the Project Management Plan
  • Managing stakeholder expectations throughout the project
  • Procuring the necessary resources to complete the project
  • Developing and managing project resources
  • Performing quality assurance
  • Sample PMP test question

class 9:  11/3/2016 Chris Bolick – Project Execution

  • Monitoring and communicating project performance
  • Comparing project performance to the performance measurement baselines
  • Performing earned value management and interpreting the results
  • Creating project status reports
  • Sample PMP test questions

class 10:  11/10/2016 Part 1: Chris Bolick – Project Execution

  • Implementing the change control process
  • Evaluating change impacts against all project constraints
  • Understanding corrective actions, preventative action, and defect repairs
  • Identifying applicable documents to update during the change control process
  • Communicating issues, variances, changes, and proposed solutions to stakeholders

class 10:  11/10/2016 Part 2: Craig Marek – Project Closure

  • Introduction and overview of Project Close
  • Explain the Project close processes

class 11:  11/17/2016 Craig Marek – Project Closure

  • Overview of the 8 activities and 5 documents in Project Close
  • How to confirm that all project requirements have been met
  • Discuss the Project closure activities
  • Conducting the project transition

11/24/2016 Off for Thanksgiving

class 12:  Overview of the project feedback loop

  • Discuss lessons learned and best practices
  • Overview of the project summary and close out meeting
  • Explain project performance data
  • Performing the administrative close
  • Understanding the post mortem and the project success

class 13:  12/8/2016 Jennifer Baker – Capstone

  • Project Lifecycle (Cradle to Grave)
  • Presentation Expectations
  • Sample Test Questions
  • What happens now?

class 14:  12/15/2016 Jennifer Baker – Capstone

  • Capstone Presentations
  • Wrap up and Closure

Program Faculty


Jennifer Baker:  MSPM, PfMP, PgMP, PMP, ITIL, BRMP, MBB (Faculty Leader)

Jennifer is a multi-disciplined certified manager with more than 25 years of experience in many business sectors including finance, government, hospitality, education and energy.  She is the Director of the Project Management Center of Excellence at Amtrak and an Adjunct Professor at Northeastern University and Georgetown University in addition to her role here at Wake Forest. She is also very active with several non-profit organizations including serving on the Board of Directors for the PMI-Metrolina chapter for several years. In 2013, she was featured in a portfolio management article called “Going the Distance” in PM Network magazine. She was both an Alpha and Beta Contributor for PMI’s “Navigating Complexity” guide published in 2014.  She recently completed a chapter in the Portfolio Management compilation edited by Dr. Ginger Levin entitled, “Portfolio Management: A Strategic Approach” which was released in October 2014.  She has been a keynote speaker and presenter at project management conferences and symposiums around the world.

Chris Behling

Chris Behling:  MBA, PMP, PhD (ABD)

Chris has been working as a project management instructor for nearly 15 years for a variety of colleges and universities as well as a private training company. Chris also works for Bank of America in their Global Human Resources area with responsibilities for implementation and program management.  She previously held PMO leadership positions with Wells Fargo, Wachovia, Allstate and Northwestern Mutual.  With over 20 years of financial service industry experiences with Fortune 50 companies, Chris has developed a range of business skills that include certifications in project management (PMP), quality systems (ISO 9000 auditor and certified Six Sigma), and even was one of the first three certified webmasters in the United States. Chris has an undergraduate degree in English, an MBA with an IT concentration, and is nearing completion of a PhD in Organizational Management – Project Management.


William L. Davis

Professor of the Practice of Management, Wake Forest University Schools of Business.  BA, Carson-Newman College; MA, Wake Forest University; PhD, Ohio State University. Bill joined the Schools of Business in August 1996 and teaches Management Communication, Leadership & Behavior in Organizations, Negotiating Skills, and Leading Change.  Prior to joining the School, Bill had been an instructor at Western Kentucky University and Wright State University, manager of interpersonal communications programs for NCR Corporation, senior consultant with Hayes Group International, and founder and president of Davis Development Company, an organizational behavior consultancy.  His current clients include BB&T, Cogentrix Energy, Polo Ralph Lauren, Syngenta and Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center.


Christopher Bolick: MPM, PMP, BPM

Christopher is a building design manager for Lowe’s Companies, Inc. As a member of the Real Estate Engineering & Construction group, he is responsible for design criteria, specifications, and continuous improvement activities for all new store projects. Christopher has over 15 years of experience in the retail and construction industry as an estimator, project manager, process manager, and procurement category manager leading cross-functional teams, executing strategic initiatives, and implementing sourcing and supplier management activities. A graduate of Western Carolina University, Christopher holds a Masters in Project Management (MPM) and Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) with a concentration in Graphic Design. Further, Christopher is a certified Project Management Professional (PMP) and holds a Business Process Management (BPM) certificate.


Craig Marek: MPM, PgMP, PMP

Craig is currently a Program Manager at TIAA-CREF in the Office of Business Effectiveness (OBE).  He is currently leading a strategic multi-year program.  Born and raised in Illinois, Craig spent 4 years in the Air Force prior to returning to Normal, Ill to pursue a degree in Computer Science from Illinois State University.  After graduation, Craig started his career with an international systems integration and consulting firm in Chicago.  Initially a programmer/analyst in legacy environments, Craig quickly began leading project engagements.  He has worked as a Project Manager, Program Manager, and the leader of an IT PMO.  He has been a PMP since March 2004 and a PgMP since 2014.  Craig also earned a Masters in Project Management from Western Carolina University in 2010.  Craig continues his 27 plus years of professional growth by being active in his local PMI chapter, attending PMI Congress and Seminars, and by volunteering for a 3-year role on a PMI Global Support Committee.

Program Prerequisites

Participants must have a minimum of a bachelor’s degree or the equivalent. A TOEFL examination for non-native speakers of English is not required but students are expected to read, write and comprehend English at the graduate level to fully participate in and gain from the program. Any requests for exceptions to these requirements must be made in writing to the program director, Carol Oliff, at

Program Materials

Most course materials are included in tuition and many will be distributed in digital format, accessible through Sakai, Wake Forest’s learning management system.  Students must have a laptop or tablet computer to access these course materials.  Additional course textbooks and materials may be required as a part of this course and purchased by students through the student’s preferred vendor.

Certificate Requirements

To be eligible to receive a Certificate in Project Management from Wake Forest University, students must successfully complete all portions of the 14 week course within the allotted time period, working in close collaboration with faculty regarding all requirements (including attendance and present for at least 13 of the 14 classroom sessions).

Location & Parking

Wake Forest University Charlotte Center
200 N. College Street, Suite 150
Charlotte, NC  28202

Parking is provided for you in the Wake Forest University Charlotte Center Parking Garage, located on 5th Street and adjacent to the Wake Forest University Charlotte Center.  Please bring your parking ticket into the facility with you for validation.


The cost of the program will be $5,000 and includes most materials. WFU alumni, faculty, and staff receive a 10% tuition discount.  Some company partnership discounts/scholarships are available for this course.  Please email for more information.

Payment Options

While non-credit professional certificate programs do not qualify for federal financial aid, prospective students should consider the following for tuition payment:

  • Seek employer funding or reimbursement
  • Apply for a private education loan
  • Take advantage of tuition discounts for alums, groups, and select partner organizations

This certificate is an open enrollment program. Application is not required. Course registration is complete when payment is processed and you receive a confirmation email. In order to register, you will need to render payment. Please begin registration when you are ready to render payment. Enrollment opportunity forthcoming.

Registration and Payment Form

This certificate is an open enrollment program. Application is not required. Course registration is complete when payment is processed and you receive a confirmation email. In order to register, you will need to render payment. Please begin registration when you are ready to render payment.Cancellation of Certificate Programs

This course is offered contingent upon sufficient enrollment. If a course must be cancelled, all registered students will be notified at least five (5) calendar days before the course’s start date. All registered students will receive a 100% tuition refund. No fees will be charged for cancelled courses.

Refund Policy

Refunds are computed based on the date and time that a student’s request to withdraw is received in writing. Prospective students who withdraw prior to the start of a course will receive a full refund of tuition paid.

For More Information

For more information or to speak with a program advisor, please send an email to