The APM Midlands Branch represents and supports APM members in the Midlands region, covering from Worcester in the South West, Milton Keynes in the South East, Nottingham in the North East and Staffordshire in the North West.
The Midlands Branch are supporting the development of the profession amongst students by holding a series of project management simulation events open to Higher Education Institutions (HEI’s) in the Midlands Branch region. During these simulations, the students will have to solve a problem using skills they should have picked up on a project management module/course.
Project management simulation events
Four separate events have been scheduled across the Midlands Branch region as “Project Management Simulations” along with a “finals night” for the winning teams from each event.
The first event was run at Worcester University on November 15th, with future events proposed or scheduled at University College Birmingham, Derby University, and Nottingham Trent University between now and the end of January 2017. At Worcester, 3 student groups applied their project management knowledge to solve a problem, with the successful group winning through to the finals night.
For these events the APM Midlands Branch provide a facilitator to run a project management simulation that lasts between 2 and 3 hours, with developmental feedback at the end of the event. No pre-work by students or academics is required, and there is no marking, as the event “winner” is announced at the end of each event.
Each event is self-contained and the APM provide a small budget for each event that could be used for light refreshments.
The winning team from each regional event (Worcester University have already booked their place with 3 places remaining) are invited to a simulation finals night – a second project management simulation - in March 2017, co-hosted by the Midlands Branch Corporates group of the APM, at a corporate venue allowing networking opportunities for students.
Finalists will be invited to attend a finals night on Wednesday 22 March 2017 alongside students and young project managers and students vying for the APM Midlands Branch Student and Young Project Manager of the Year Award 2016 and their sponsoring Higher Education Institutes and Corporate members.
The presentation evening will take place at the outstanding Rolls Royce Learning and Development Centre in Derby, where guests will have the opportunity to visit the prestigious Rolls Royce Heritage museum within the LDC.
The finals night will run in parallel with a corporate event where there will be a speaker from Rolls Royce, informal networking opportunities, a delicious hot buffet and headline speaker, APM Vice President Miles Shepherd.
A photographer will be on hand to capture the moment as the winners receive their trophies, in addition to documentary photographs of the evening’s highlights and guests.
Academics may choose to follow the event with assessment or discussion. Although the results from the event could be used as assessments, experience has shown that basing marks on the result can be demotivating (one team has to perform the worst). Reflective essays are a possible alternative, although a “Post Project Review” by the team would perhaps be the most applicable post event de-brief.
It is hoped that this practical application of project management skills is welcomed by students as part of their journey from knowledge to competence.