Navigating the Project Learning Partnership for Michigan Initiative: Lessons Learned from Collaborating and Cooperating for Change in Divergent Organizational Cultures

By William A. Moylan.

Published by The Organization Collection

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Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

The Project Learning Partnership for Michigan Initiative [PLP-MI], the author’s sabbatical leave project for the 2008-2009 school year, is a series of outreach activities intended to initiate project-based learning [PBL] in Southeastern Michigan. The focus of the PLP-MI is to support middle and high schools interested in infusing project-based competitions as learning opportunities as part of their regular curricula. The PLP-MI, a collaborative partnership between a regional professional engineering society and the author’s home university, intends to help improve the teaching of science, technology, engineering and mathematics [STEM] in primary and secondary education eventually throughout the state of Michigan. The paper will review the lessons learned from the author’s PLP-MI sabbatical project, in particular, the challenges of attempting to develop collaboration and gain cooperation between the divergent cultures of primary/secondary education and business & industry. The paper will address the inherent strengths and apparent weaknesses of the “educator/engineer partnership” approach in implementing new STEM education programs. The paper will suggest strategies and tactics for initiating changes between divergent professional entities with the intention of building a sustainable cooperative and collaborative partnership.

Keywords: Building Organizational Collaborative Culture, Leading Culture Change, Organizational Culture, Project Based Learning

International Journal of Knowledge, Culture and Change Management, Volume 9, Issue 9, pp.83-92. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 1.180MB).

Prof. William A. Moylan

Assistant Professor, Construction Management, School of Engineering Technology, Eastern Michigan University, Ypsilanti, Michigan, USA

Prof. William Moylan, PhD, PMP, is on the faculty of Eastern Michigan University’s College of Technology and instructs in Construction Management. In addition, he consultants, trains, and acts as an expert witness in Project Management and Construction Safety. Dr. Moylan has extensive professional experience in all aspects of program and project management. He has worked on new product development, manufacturing, information systems, facility engineering, and construction projects within the heavy construction, oil & gas production, petroleum, chemical processing, energy, academic, government, public service, automotive, and manufacturing industries. In July 2005, Dr. Moylan was awarded his Ph.D. in Organization & Management with focus in Leadership from the Capella University School of Business. His dissertation research was on values-based leadership concepts, values and skills, and its application to building ethical partnerships in the construction industry. He received his BS in Construction Engineering from Lawrence Technological University; and, his Masters from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Dr. Moylan is active in a variety of professional societies and civic activities, including the Project Management Institute, the Engineering Society of Detroit, Habitat for Humanity, and, Toastmasters International.


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