Are you at that stage in your career where it’s time to level up? You’re a project manager who’s looking to really stamp your authority and expertise and want to get a certification that formalizes the years of experience you already possess.
You’ve done some searching and there’s no shortage of options: the PMI (Project Management Institute) has been around for a long time and is the governing body of best practice in the PM space worldwide. On the other hand, you have the classical, Ivy League schools, colleges and universities that offer their project management certifications. Is it possible to have the best of both worlds? We’ll explore that in this week’s blog.
Does Harvard offer the PMP Certification?
When this question came in, I had to check. I wasn’t sure if arguably the best university in the world actually offered the PMP Certification. From looking through the website and trawling link by link through its pages on project management certifications, I can tell you that Harvard currently doesn’t offer the PMP Certification.
Not sure if someone’s been spreading rumors or people expect an Ivy League school to have the PMP Certification online, but this combo doesn’t exist. Would’ve been nice: a Harvard-branded professional project management certification rubber stamped by the PMI. It’s not to be.
They have a number of project management certifications that we’ll look at next though that might be a better option for you.
What’s better: a tertiary qualification or a qualification from the peak professional body?
Let’s break down what the pros and cons are of the PMP Certification, versus the options that Harvard offers and why you might and might not consider their options.
- Range of providers, meaning that you can find one that potentially costs less.
- In the hundreds of dollars, not thousands,
- Has industry recognition. Some companies may state this as a certification that they will look favorably upon if their candidate does possess it.
- Can be passed in a matter of months, not years.
- Has to be renewed every three years,
- Not a “set and forget” type of certification. You have to gain 60 PDUs every 3 years, involving education but also contribution to maintain your PMP Certification.
- Does require quite rigorous study in order to pass the exam.
Harvard Project Management Graduate Certificate
- It’s Harvard. Even if it’s not a full course, having that on your resume is still going to get attention.
- Alumni network. You’ll be plugged into their group of past students who will be good individuals to network with.
- Relatively flexible. You can complete the four courses online and on campus, within a three year period.
- No application process. You pay the fee then complete the certificate.
- The cost is $3,100. A bit hefty for a lot of people.
- This certificate gives you the fundamentals and a strong foundation of project management, whereas the PMP is more so for established industry professionals to recognize their experience and expertise.
- Might be more theory based than practical.
While on paper they seem comparable, the reality is that a graduate certificate is more suitable if you’re newer and want a comprehensive grounding in the area, wheras the PMP is for “grizzled veterans”. I personally feel that if you want to get ahead in your career, the PMP Certification will get you further.