Home Campus Directory | A-Z Index

Professional Development Plan and Course Descriptions

Professional Development Plan

Craft a plan that draws from career-enhancing business skills, IT training, and specialized certifications for advancing your career and fulfilling your professional goals.

With every graduate course you complete toward your degree, you earn one (1) Professional Development Opportunity (PDO)†.   Accumulated  PDOs can be used to take continuing professional development (CPE) courses and certificate programs, at no extra cost to you. Almost all CPE courses are PDO eligible. Below is the list of courses, descriptions and PDO levels. See our schedule of additional PDO eligible workshops currently being offered.

NOTE: Not all professional development classes and workshops are offered every semester.  Visit our Professional Education webpages for the current course offerings and schedules.

† This program is applicable to students taking classes beginning with the 2013 summer semester.
* NOTE: This offer does not include books or course materials and is valid for two (2) years post graduation.

For questions, more information, or to
register for a course using PDOs, contact:
Ed Weckerly at 610-648-3281


Course Descriptions

Professional Development Opportunity (PDO) classes and workshops are offered in the following areas:

  • Personal competency workshops
  • Information technology competency workshops
  • Information technology certificate programs
  • Business and management certificate programs


Personal Competency Workshops

  • Presentation and Communication Skills (1 PDO)
    By the end of this one-day workshop, participants will learn how to: present with confidence, competence and clarity; organize presentations to achieve their purpose; develop and use factual, logical, and interesting supporting material; use visuals effectively; handle and connect with an audience; use nonverbal body language to add power to their presentations; control anxiety; respond to questions effectively; and present with poise and increased confidence when addressing a group.
  • Writing Skills (1 PDO)
    In this one-day workshop, participants will increase their awareness of writing errors typically seen in company e-mail and memos. Participants will identify sentence structure and grammatical errors in their own e-mails and memos, and in the writing samples of their colleagues. In addition they will increase the accuracy of their writing for e-mail and memos.
  • Technical Writing (1 PDO)
    Over time, professionals tend to forget English and grammar rules or feel their writing is not getting results. During this one-day workshops students will be exposed to the following topics: The six C’s, active vs. passive voice, audience analysis, style, and tone.
  • Project Management, Overview (1 PDO)
    This workshop offers students a step-by-step overview of the methodology utilized to more effectively and efficiently manage their projects. The methodology used is based on the stages of project management as defined by the Project Management Institute (PMI).
  • Introduction to Statistics (1 PDO)
    During this workshop, students will be introduced to Minitab, a tool widely used in analyzing statistics, in addition to the following topics: quality control; descriptive statistics; probability and probability distributions; and population and sampling.
  • Supervising Others (1 PDO)
    This workshop will assist supervisors in becoming more efficient and proficient with information on delegating, managing time, setting goals and expectations for themselves and subordinates, providing feedback, resolving conflict, and administering discipline.
  • Building High Performance Teams (1 PDO)
    This workshop is designed to help participants identify with different types of teams and how to define team success. Topics covered will be adapting one's leadership style to be effective in different situations, communicating effectively with a team so that all team members contribute to the team’s goals, and how to deliver team meetings and discussions that are participative and positive.
  • Time Management (1 PDO) 
    This one-day workshop will provide a set of time-proven management tips and tools to help make decisions regarding the time management that will lead to more effective, efficient results in all aspects of life. Content will include crafting a master list of goals and activities that compete for time and attention, and creating and prioritize high-value goals.
  • Conflict Resolution (1 PDO) 
    Participants will learn more about their personal approach to handling conflict and better understand the consequences of conflict in a work setting. Also covered is how to uncover the right communication skills that can help address conflict.
  • Financial Planning & Budgeting (1 PDO) 
    Attendees will get advice on a wide range of topics such as managing debt, retirement planning, fixing credit mishaps, insurance, dealing with tax problems, and saving for college or a home.
  • Negotiation Skills (1 PDO)
    In this workshop, participants will learn to build the necessary skills they will need to be able to enter real-life negotiations with confidence and understanding. Other items covered include developing the skills that will enable one to negotiate from a position of strength, as well as building the confidence to respond to the changing circumstances of the negotiation itself and the people directly and indirectly involved.
  • Proposal Writing (1 PDO) 
    This workshop is designed to better equip someone to prepare proposals that win contracts by focusing on clear writing and the business aspects of proposal writing. It will also assist in the direction needed for tackling the work involved in responding to a non-profit, government, or corporate RFP.
  • Meeting Management (1 PDO) 
    This workshop will provide participants with the practical step-by-step essentials, approaches, and tools that will result in fulfilling meeting goals efficiently. This highly interactive workshop covers how to have fewer meetings and get better results. Participants will learn specific, easy-to-use tools for creating a more direct focus in meetings.

Information Technology Competency Workshops

  • Microsoft Excel Level II (1 PDO) 
    This hands-on, one-day workshop will provide students with the opportunity to learn advanced topics in MS Excel and the procedure to import charts and data into an MS Word document. Topics include data manipulation, data validation, charts, tables, and macros. Through a series of instructor-led exercises, students will be able to customize an MS Excel workbook.
  • Microsoft Project (1 PDO) 
    This hands-on, one-day workshop will provide students with the opportunity to gain a stronger understanding of Microsoft Project and render students the skills to utilize this program. Topics include basic and task specific functions, utilization of PERT/Gant, resource management, and calendar work schedule manipulation. In addition, through a series of instructor-led exercises, students will be able to customize Microsoft Project
  • Introduction to Programming Concepts Using Java (1 PDO) 
    The course work provides a basic introduction to the programming process and a brief insight to Java, an object-oriented programming language. The workshop is intended for those who have little or no programming background. No experience in any programming language is expected.

Business & Management Certificate Programs
  • Project Management (8 PDOs)
    This program is a structured sequence of four courses to prepare students for careers in the planning and business fields. It is designed for managers and supervisors involved in engineering, research and development, data processing, construction, facilities management, manufacturing, corporate planning, finance, and marketing.
    Courses within the certificate program include:
    -- BUSAD 5538: Project Initiation & Planning
    -- BUSAD 5539: Project Scheduling & Integration
    -- BUSAD 5540: Project Costing & Control
    -- BUSAD 5541: Project Risk & Change Management
  • Project Risk (6 PDOs)
    Project Risk is a structured sequence of three courses that prepare students to manage risk throughout project management by assessing and identifying risks, mitigating threats, and capitalizing on opportunities, while maintaining sound project management policies and practices. The program is designed for managers and supervisors involved in engineering, research and development, data processing, construction, facilities management, manufacturing, corporate planning, finance, and marketing. For students seeking a new credential, the program also helps prepare for the Project Management Institute (PMI) Risk Management Professional certification (PMI-RMP). Globally recognized and demanded, the PMI-RMP® fills the need for a specialist role in project risk management.
    Courses within the certificate program include:
    -- BUSAD 5814: Project Risk Management Planning & Identification
    -- BUSAD 5815: Project Risk Analysis
    -- BUSAD 5816: Project Risk Response Planning, Monitoring & Control
  • PMP Certification Prep Course (2 PDOs)
    Covers all areas of the Project Management Institute's (PMI®) Guide to the Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK® Guide): integration, scope, time, cost, quality, human resources, communications, procurement, and risk. Also includes Project Management Professional (PMP) Exam Prep.
  • Leadership Development (8 PDOs)
    Leadership effectiveness is an important factor today when organizations must simultaneously cut budgets while retaining and nurturing talent. Every organization needs skilled leaders to allocate limited resources and to create a work environment that encourages employee development, involvement, commitment, and retention.
    Courses within the certificate program include:
    -- BUSAD 5526: Developing Personal Leadership
    -- BUSAD 5520: Leading Change in Organizations
    -- BUSAD 5701: Decision-Making
    -- BUSAD 5604: Strategic Planning 
  • Lean Six Sigma (6 PDOs)
    Lean Six Sigma is a fundamental for continuous improvement in any service industry, technology group, health care sector, office environment, or manufacturing business. This three-course program will provide students with the tools necessary to increase customer satisfaction in the areas of: services improvement, process improvement, information flow, quality designs, on-time delivery, waste elimination, product flow, team work, and time management.
    Courses within the certificate program include:
    -- SYSEN 5606: Lean Six Sigma Theory & Application
    -- SYSEN 5605: Lean Six Sigma for Continuous Improvement
    --  SYSEN 5625  Lean Six Sigma Customer Driven