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The power of project management: roundtable today

Too much work? Too little time? Join UCOP’s Project Management Interest Group (PMIG) for their monthly brown bag meetings the first Tuesday of each month, which alternate between the Franklin and Kaiser buildings.

In case you missed their table at Taco Tuesday during Staff Appreciation Week, the PMIG is an affinity group that launched in 2009 to provide support and share best practices and tools for getting work done more quickly and effectively.

This month’s meeting takes place today, Tuesday, Oct. 2, from 12 to 1 p.m. in 712 Kaiser. It features a roundtable discussion on the value that project management training, methodologies and tools can bring to projects, departments and organizations.

Participants include:

  • Mary Croughan, executive director, Research Grants Program Office
  • Kobie Crowder, director of strategic projects, Business Operations
  • Patrick Furze, senior program manager and UCPath technical lead, Information Technology Services

The panelists will speak briefly about their role in the organization, then give examples of specific projects they have worked on using project management concepts and tools. The rest of the time will be dedicated to discussion and answering questions from attendees.

“The Research Grants Program Office has undergone significant training in project management, Microsoft Project and Sharepoint,” Croughan said. “The quality of our work and outcomes have been significantly enhanced by having project management skills for all the staff in our office.”

Crowder assumed the role of director of strategic projects earlier this year. He is working to establish standard project management tools and methodologies for managing and prioritizing UCOP’s many initiatives and aligning them with organizational goals across departments and divisions.

As IT lead for UCPath, Furze interacts daily with the IT project managers for the UCPath project at each of the UC campuses and medical centers. He also oversees project managers on his own team who are each assigned to a specific UCPath IT subproject, such as the biweekly payroll conversion.

The roundtable discussion will be repeated at the November meeting, Tuesday, Nov. 6, 12 to 1 p.m. in 10325 Franklin, with a different set of panelists.

If you are interested in receiving reminders for each monthly brown bag, contact Paul Master at to be added to the PMIG listserv.

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