Jim O'Donnell

Jim O'Donnell instructor

Jim O'Donnell's unique combination of technical knowledge, project management experience, and interpersonal skills has helped him become one of the highest rated project management instructors at companies such as Boeing, Dell Computers, Intel, Monsanto, LA Unified School District, Pacific Life and many other Fortune 500 and state and local governments.

With over 25 years experience as a senior project manager, Jim has worked in fields as varied as information technology, oil and gas, software development, corporate training, and start ups. Jim brings a unique blend of real-world project experience and published academic research to a dynamic classroom environment. He has overseen the management of over $1 billion in global projects in 20 years. He's excited to be sharing all of the knowledge he has gained with others.

Jim teaches a complete range of project management material and has authored courses in PMP Prep, Foundations of Project Management, Managing & Leading Successful Projects, Managing Complex Projects, and Assessing and Recovering Troubled Projects.

He has earned a BS and MS in Computational Physics from Carnegie Mellon University, an MBA from the Florida Institute of Technology and Doctorate in Business from Argosy University in Seattle. His dissertation topic is relevant, as well, "A Study of the Relationships among Project Managers’ Leadership Practices, Project Complexity, and Project Success."

Teaching Style & Approach

Jim tailors the class experience to the students' needs and learning styles and says "most adults learn by doing." He encourages discussion to bring topics to life, and understands that stories can be powerful ways to communicate a lesson or idea.

In his classes, Jim makes an effort to get to know the students, their interests, backgrounds and goals. He explains, "My job, ultimately, is to help students reach their academic, career, and personal goals.

Jim is passionate about teaching project management, and says, "I think an interactive, conversational classroom dynamic works best for most subjects."

Student Reviews

"Beyond my expectations, the instructor is very knowledgeable and charismatic."

"Jim is really funny and makes the content easier to understand."

"Class is great and Jim is great at teaching and an expert on the subject."

"Love how the instructor lectures and teaches with real-life experiences as well as using our current experiences to discuss the material."

"I enjoy the group work and applying what we're learning."