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Student testimonial: Adele Smyth and her Learning People experience

We caught up with project management student Adele on how studying with Learning People compared to her previous learning experiences. 

Published on: 18th October 2019

Learning People | Project Management Student AdeleWhat first led you to consider online learning?

“They say timing is everything… and with online education you can start at any time. When I first thought about online learning, this was a new concept to me, as traditionally most people start in January or September, which follows the traditional school calendar. I had been thinking about doing the PMP (Project Management Professional) course for a number of years. I had project management experience and small certifications, but truly believe in professional qualifications. The PMP is the highest qualification in the world for project managers, which makes it difficult but also highly rewarding.

I had done various types of learning before coming to the Learning People. I have a degree, C&G, one day courses and long distance courses, but have never fully ventured into online learning. I was sceptical about its credentials, the method and what you were actually paying for. All of my previous learning had come from recognised institutions with years of pedigree and I didn’t know if any online provider could offer something similar.”

What challenges have you previously faced when it came to your professional development?

“I had done a smaller PMP course with a professional development learning provider and I was so disappointed with the course coverage and how the answer to every question was “just learn it off”, which seemed very un-PMP like. They tried to cover the entire course in one month along with distance learning and it was the biggest waste of time and money. I didn’t think I would ever attempt PMP after it, as no one seemed to have any real grasp of the topics involved. 

I researched a few other options some time later but was frustrated at the lack of choice. It was either a full time course which would have involved moving at a large expense, or various short courses from unknown or non-accredited providers. I had kind of given up. I was putting my CV on a jobs website and asked them email me any offers they thought might be relevant.”

What was your first impression of Learning People?

“I got an email telling me about Learning People and the new project management course they offered. It covers PRINCE2 (the UK standard), Agile and the PMP qualification which can all be done online. I looked at the website and thought it might be worth an email to see what it was all about. I was quite surprised to get a phone call the next day from a lovely gentleman called Peter. He explained the course to me in more detail, how it was accredited and approved by the Project Management Institute (PMI). We talked at length about online learning and how it would be beneficial to me. From the very outset it was all about me, how it would help, how much I would learn, how flexible it is etc. There was no “sales” push to any of this. It was a very nice chat about my career options. I took some time to think it over and was emailed more information as per my request. Nothing was a problem.

I considered all the options and thought the project management course with Learning People was the best in terms of courses covered, value and ease of use. The project management course covers four large topic areas which all Project Managers should be familiar with. At the initial sign up, exams fees were included, even one re-sit if needed, along with an entire library of project management books and access to mentors.”

Any highlights of the project management course?

“One of the best parts of this particular course is the mentors. You can either email or chat online to a mentor between certain hours with any questions you have. Everyone learns differently and being able to chat to or email a mentor is invaluable. I had a lot of questions as I was going through the course material and no one knows everything. I needed extra help with certain math calculations etc. which are part of the course. This is a new feature I had never experienced before on any other course and it’s worth the payment on its own.”

How would you describe your overall experience with Learning People?

“Everyone I have dealt with in Learning People has always been friendly, approachable and eager to help. Any technical issues were sorted quickly and when I was booking my exams, the customer service was first class. For anyone thinking about online learning, it really is convenient and easy to adapt to. Whatever your subject area, you should take the opportunity to learn more because education is always a good idea. Learning People have been excellent in helping me to achieve my goals and provided an option I didn’t think was possible. I have some more learning to do but I would have no hesitation in recommending the Learning People to help you in your path to success.

I gained so much confidence from my learning and this month I have been asked to give my first ever project management talk at the inaugural Women in Project Management Summit 2019  organised by the PM Summit Team. It’s on Thursday 24th October at the Convention Centre, Dublin. 

My talk is entitled “I’m Here Because All My Plans Failed…Change and the Process of Becoming.” I’ll be discussing how I became a Project Manager and all of the failures and changes that led to being on this path. “

And finally, do you have any advice for someone who is considering enrolling on a project management course?

“Timing is everything and I think the Learning People came around at just the right time for me. Whatever it is that you want to learn, don’t wait, start now…”

We can’t thank Adele enough for her kind words and can’t wait to hear about her future career successes.

Contact us today about our project management courses to get started on your new career path.