Friday, July 29, 2011

Teaching Project Management Skills and Instilling a Commitment to Service

By No Sophearith

University of Cambodia (UC) students in the course “Fundamentals of Project Management” planned and managed several projects, with guidance from College of Management (CoM) Associate Dean Gina Lopez and lecturer Lay Sok Heng. The students came up with the ideas for the term-long projects. They aimed to learn about theories and practical application, and also to contribute to society. The projects focused on charity, leadership, education, the environment, health, and other topics useful to both students and society. They included a workshop teaching first aid to school children, a radio talk show, a photography fair, a tree planting event, and a workshop informing young students about the importance of higher education.

Youth Education and Sharing was one of the projects managed by a group of students studying in the morning session. In this project, Se Puthika, a CoM student, and six other group members conducted workshops on time management for students at a local high school and students at UC.

“In the project, there were two main purposes,” said Puthika. “The first purpose was to encourage university students to. . .[understand]. . .time management in their studies, and [the] second purpose was to encourage them to share their experiences. . .[with]. . .other high school students.”

Puthika said she was really happy to do the project because she was able to contribute what she has learned for the benefit of society.

Another project, organized by three groups in the course, focused on educating children at Serey Ompel Orphanage and collecting donations for the orphans. One group taught English language lessons, while another group collected used clothes, toys, books and other items from UC students to bring to the orphanage. The third group of students focused on teaching personal hygiene to the orphans.

Associate Dean Lopez said she was very proud of the students, especially after seeing them actively involved in and committed to the projects.

“I think most of them enjoyed it,” said Associate Dean Lopez. “Sometimes, we don’t really realize that we can do something which just really works.”

Students took this opportunity to practice what they have learned in class and to serve the community, according to Associate Dean Lopez. She said that it was especially useful for students who plan to pursue scholarship opportunities to study abroad. Moreover, the students said they really enjoyed organizing the projects and do not regret taking the course because they had a rich learning experience.

Source: UC Bulletin June 2011, Page 15

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