Undertaking a Master of Project Management for the Built Environment, Robert Taylor is looking to build his project management skills and future-proof his career.

Currently working as a civil engineer for AECOM, Robert is involved in the design of civil aspects on roads and industrial sites.

“My role includes the geometric design of roads, pavements, and road safety infrastructure along with the broader interactions of drainage and geotechnical design.

“For industrial sites there is broader approach involving multi-discipline design work in collaboration with a range of other engineering disciplines, including mechanical, electrical, and structural engineers to name a few,” Robert said.

In addition to the technical element of his role, Robert explains that there is a large portion of time spent on activities like project management as he must manage teams, communicate to stakeholders and keep tasks on a schedule.

By taking on further study, Robert hopes to become more capable in providing a quality project management service for his clients.

“The intent of completing this course was to expand my knowledge in the field of project management and ensure that as an employee I’m very well prepared.

“This course will allow me to develop a range of theoretical project management skills that will ideally complement the practical project management activities that I often complete in my current role,” he said.

To Robert, choosing the University of Newcastle was an easy choice as he had already studied with the university for his undergraduate degree.

He also had the ability to gain credit for some subjects, easily travel to the nearby campus and he had existing knowledge of the university interfaces, making him very comfortable in undertaking further study.

So far, Robert has enjoyed the online flexibility of his course, allowing him to balance work, family and his own interests.

“The flexibility has enabled me to continue my work, other personal activities and sports outside of work while still studying.

“I would often set aside only a few hours on a weekend to make sure I kept up with the content and then when there were larger assessment activities, I would make sure to study for a few hours on the weeknights,” he said.

Robert has also enjoyed the networking and multidisciplinary groupwork opportunities that have been available during his postgraduate studies.

"I have been able to interact with a range of individuals in differing industries and geographic areas.

“The perspectives shared by all these peers added to the learning environment as we would often share experiences that may have been unique to our roles or industry but had principles that could be applied across all our workplaces,” Robert said.

Robert has found that he is already able to implement learning from his course into his current work.

“On all projects, there is always a considerable amount of work to identify and manage stakeholders and ensure that effective communication strategies are employed as part of that management.

“This is something that I identified early in the course and was able to utilise on a number of work projects to ensure that I understood my clients aims and maintained communication with them on a level that demonstrated I was aware of their goals or concerns,” he said.

In Robert’s eyes, a good project manager is an enabler of collaboration, which is something he personally strives for.

“I have a goal of ensuring that the project management activities I provide to clients and colleagues are of excellent quality.

“I’m driven in wanting to provide the right solution to a problem in a manner that allows for all parties to provide suitable input and have their thoughts considered,” Robert said.

Robert believes that personal drive and clear purpose is essential when undertaking additional study.

“Whether for improving your employment options, becoming more competent in a particular knowledge area or seeking a career change, there must be a real purpose that drives you to start and more importantly complete a postgraduate course.

“Without a goal to drive you in the completion of the course, it could leave you feeling unfocused and potentially unsatisfied in your study,” Robert said.

Learn more about the Master of Project Management for the Built Environment

Robert Taylor

Robert Taylor

Robert Taylor is undertaking a Master of Project Management for the Built Environment to build his project management skills and become a more capable employee.

I’m driven in wanting to provide the right solution to a problem in a manner that allows for all parties to provide suitable input and have their thoughts considered.

The University of Newcastle acknowledges the traditional custodians of the lands within our footprint areas: Awabakal, Darkinjung, Biripai, Worimi, Wonnarua, and Eora Nations. We also pay respect to the wisdom of our Elders past and present.