University PM Talks - Hosted by Georgetown University

University PM Talks - Hosted by Georgetown University


Latoya Morris

Management Consultant, Author
Integrity Consulting Experts, LLC

Michael Thornton

COO, Consultant
Visionary Consulting Partners, LLC

Dereje Tessema

Adjunct faculty at Georgetown University
Georgetown University

PMIWDC Non-Member Rate

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Event Date
Event Location

Georgetown University School of Continuing Studies, SCS Auditorium
640 Massachusetts Ave, NW
Washington, DC, 20001

Agenda and Cost:

This event goes from 6:00 pm to 8:00 pm, with the first 30 minutes devoted to networking.

This event is free for students, costs $20 for members, and $25 for non-members.

For the student rate, please email from an .edu email address, with your first and last name and we will register you for this event for free!

Project Management Institute Washington DC (PMIWDC) Chapter partners with local universities to bring our chapter events to university students, young professionals, and our members in Washington, DC on a quarterly basis. Both Members and Non-Members are welcome to join us for the best speakers and networking the Washington DC area has to offer! The presentations are targeted towards project management professionals, corporate and government leaders, and students looking to step into the field of project management. Our speakers will discuss each element of the PMI Talent Triangle to help further professional development and enhance the following skills all in one night! Each University PM Talks Event also offers certified PMPs 1.5 Professional Development Units (PDUs). These elements include:

  • Technical Project Management (0.5)
  • Leadership (0.5)
  • Strategic and Business Management (0.5)

This event provides 1.5 PDUs for certified PMs. If you have any questions about the event, please contact us.


6:00 PM- 6:30 PM Networking / Food & Drinks
6:30 PM -7:30 PM University PM Talks Presentations
Strategic and Business Management (20 Minutes)
Technical Project Management (20 Minutes)
Leadership (20 Minutes)
8:00 PM - 8:30 PM Q&A with Speakers


Strategies for Managing Staff with High-Functioning Autism or Aspergers
Presentation by Latoya Morris

The corporate world is becoming more and more diverse.  Diversity according to Merriam-Webster is the condition of having or being composed of differing elements; variety, especially: the inclusion of different types of people (such as people of different races or cultures) in a group or organization.  When we think of diversity, we think of cultural, religious, and racial diversity, but diversity does not end there.  Asperger’s, also known in the medical field as  High-Functioning Autism (HFA) or Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), is increasingly becoming a form of diversity that we as managers and project managers should not only be aware of and sensitive to, but we also need strategies for effectively managing staff with HFA.  Persons having HFA tend to be highly skilled in roles like engineering, web design, software programmers, technical writers, etc. so as a Project Manager, specifically IT project manager, it is likely you will work with persons having HFA on some of your engagements. This presentation provides awareness and insight into how to best recognize these traits and how to effectively manage staff with HFA so that both the project and the employee can be successful.

Situational Leadership and Successful Project Management
Presentation by Michael Thornton

Situational leadership has been a model for leaders since the 1970s. Although the adaptive leadership style has evolved over the past few decades, the tenets remain relevant to today's leaders who seek to address dynamic organizational requirements and assist employees in achieving professional potential. In this session, the value of situational leadership among project managers will be explored. More specifically, the benefits and challenges will be presented to assist project managers in determining if leadership through the lens of flexibility and partnership can facilitate the successful achievement of project objectives.

Spreading the Language of Project Management Throughout Africa to Turn the Tide on Failing Projects and Programs
Presentation by Dr. Dereje Tessema

Ethiopia is the second most populous nation in Africa with about 102 million people and the fastest growing economy in the region averaging 10.3%growth a year from 2006/07 to 2016/17 (WBG). Ethiopia’s location close to the Middle East and its markets gives it a strategic advantage in the Horn of Africa. To sustain its positive economic growth and accelerate poverty reduction, the government has embarked on several developmental programs and projects including the Grand Renaissance Dam construction program, one of the largest dams in Africa expected to generate 6000 MW power.

Effective implementation of these programs requires the use of proper project management tools and techniques. Teach and Serve for Africa (TASFA), a Maryland based nonprofit organization, in collaboration with Maryland Global University Inc, a PMI Global Educational Provider, started a pilot project to spread the language of project management throughout the country. To date, over 1000 professionals (public sector employees) have been trained in the“Foundations of Project Management” by volunteer PMPs through this initiative. The outcome and lessons learned from this project will serve as a springing board to expand the initiative throughout Africa. The purpose of this presentation is to share my experience leading this volunteer team in making a difference.

PDUs Available: 
PDUs for Certified PMs
Talent Triangle Category: 
1.5 PDUs : .5 - Strategic and Business Management, .5 Technical, .5 Leadership

Event Keywords

Soft Skills


Effective communication, in general: audience, media / message, attention vs. "noise", etc.

About the Speaker

Latoya Morris

Integrity Consulting Experts, LLC
Management Consultant, Author


Latoya Morris is a Certified Scrum Master, DevOps Generalist, ITIL-certified project, program, and portfolio management expert, and a Project Management Professional (PMP)® certification holder. She has comprehensive expertise in the federal government and private sectors delivering products across government and private industry. She is skilled at aligning projects to strategic organizational needs through stakeholder engagement, project management, resource management, quality management, schedule and cost management, and risk management. Her specialties include: information technology (IT); application implementation; telecommunications; change management; business transformation; process development and improvement; instructor-led and web-based training; and organizational governance and development. For the past five years, she has been the chief member at Integrity Consulting Experts, LLC, a small management consulting and instructional design firm. Ms. Morris also received her Masters in Public Administration from George Mason University in 2005.

Ms. Morris is also a published author in the international journal The Upper Room, the PMI Knowledge Shelf, and author of Grace in the Moment: Daily Devotions for Business Women.


Michael Thornton

Visionary Consulting Partners, LLC
COO, Consultant


Michael D. Thornton, Sr., M.S., PMP, CPHIMS, FHIMSS is a seasoned thought leader, career military officer, and private sector corporate executive with over 40 years of experience. For the past 10 years, he has been the Chief Operating Officer and Co-Owner of Visionary Consulting Partners, LLC (Visionary) and Principal Consultant offering information technology (IT), program management, and organizational development services.

As Chief Operating Officer, Mr. Thornton successfully leads Visionary in providing innovative solutions for numerous clients in both private and public sectors, academia, and nonprofit organizations. Mr. Thornton effectively balances his breadth of experience and deep, operational knowledge with the ability to strategically manage and translate Visionary's mission and vision into demonstrated accomplishments. His managerial, administrative, and consulting experience ranges from administrative health care services, information technology, and project management to organizational development and the management of human capital. Additionally, Mr. Thornton appropriately aligns organizational behaviors, design, and goals across the company, while identifying emerging trends and creating new insight into the growing consulting practice.

Mr. Thornton has previously presented in numerous forums that include the US Agency for International Development and Virginia Procurement Technical Assistance Program's Veterans International Small Business Opportunities Conference and the Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society's Global Conference.


Dereje Tessema

Georgetown University
Adjunct faculty at Georgetown University


Dr. Tessema is an adjunct faculty at Georgetown University School of Continuing Studies and works as a senior project manager for the US federal government. He co-founded Teach and Serve for Africa (TASFA) and built a“Skill Supply and Demand Mapping Platform” to facilitate knowledge exchange between the Diaspora community and the African Continent. Dr. Tessema has published books on management and leadership. His PhD research, which was later converted to a book, was on finding the relationship between emotional intelligence and transformational leadership in project management. Dr. Tessema lives in Rockville, MD with his wife and three children.


About the University PM Talks

Project Management Institute Washington DC (PMIWDC) Chapter partners with local universities to bring our chapter events to university students, young professionals, and our members in Washington, DC on a quarterly basis. Both Members and Non-Members are welcome to join us for the best speakers and networking the Washington DC area has to offer!

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