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Public Procurement and Contract Management Certificate Program Expands

Old Dominion University's innovative Graduate Certificate in Public Procurement and Contract Management (GCPPCM) program is expanding in scope.

The Strome College of Business certificate program, started in 2011 at ODU, will offer a new course, Public Procurement and Project Management, taught by Michael Bevis, director of procurement for the City of Naperville, Ill.

The innovative course covers each phase of the public procurement cycle, focusing on competencies, behaviors, relationships, tools and techniques required to manage a public procurement project, whether the project is simple or extraordinarily complex.

Stephen Gordon, director of ODU's Public Procurement and Contract Management certificate program, said Bevis is a perfect instructor for the course, which will be offered in real-time via web-conferencing.

"Michael Bevis has a long track record in this vitally important industry, which can truly determine whether public sector organizations succeed or fail," Gordon said.

Bevis' prior purchasing experiences have included deputy director of the Federal Acquisition Institute in Washington, D.C., deputy purchasing agent for the city of Chicago and purchasing manager for the Chicago Park District. In his current position he has been recognized as the Illinois Association of Procurement Officials Manager of the Year and the National Institute of Governmental Purchasing's 2005 Manager of the Year.

Bevis sits on the governing board of the Universal Public Purchasing Certification Council. He is an instructor for the National Institute of Governmental Purchasing (NIGP) and served formerly on the NIGP board of directors.

In a time of ever-tightening budgets for business, government and the military, cost savings are being sought in every aspect of operations. The field of procurement, or purchasing and contracting for goods, services and construction, represents an area where organizations will be tested to find efficiencies in a difficult financial climate.

Gordon came to ODU in 2011 after more than 35 years as one of the country's leading experts in public procurement. He came from NIGP, where he was a visiting research fellow and served as president and member of the board of directors. Previously, Gordon had been director of procurement for the city of Alexandria.

Public Procurement and Project Management is an approved elective in ODU's globally-accredited graduate certificate in Public Procurement and Contract Management (GCPPCM) program, the second such for-credit graduate certificate program offered in the United States. This new course is available to all graduate students. Send inquiries about it, or ODU's GCPPCM to PublicProcurement@odu.edu.

The ODU graduate procurement certificate program is designed as a stand-alone program composed of four required courses and one elective (15 credits total). Additionally, students enrolled in the Master of Public Administration program may take the certificate courses as their electives, earning both the certificate and an M.P.A. simultaneously. Individuals who complete the certificate program and later decide to complete an M.P.A. have the option of applying the certificate credits toward their M.P.A. degree. The certificate courses count toward the electives for ODU's M.B.A program as well.

Admission to the certificate program is open to anyone who has completed a bachelor's or master's degree at an accredited institution. Applicants enroll as non-degree graduate students through the Office of Graduate Admissions. Individuals completing the certificate as part of their M.P.A. or M.B.A. must apply and be admitted to the programs. For more information about the program, see: http://dl.odu.edu/programs/public-procurement-contract-management.

Completion of the ODU program positions students as strong contenders for top jobs in public procurement. Gordon said elected officials and senior public administrators are eager to hire workers who understand that public procurement can be done for much more than compliance.

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