BOSTON--(EON: Enhanced Online News)--The Boston Product Management Association (BPMA) launched a mentorship program this month to support Product Management 101, a new MBA elective course at the Harvard Business School. The program matches each student in Product Management 101 with two members of the BPMA who will serve as project mentors for the duration of the course.
“testament to the importance of this role”
Harvard professor Tom Eisenmann created the course this year along with Google product manager Prem Ramaswami, who serves as its teaching fellow. The team approached the BPMA, one of North America’s top associations of product professionals, in an effort to give students access to experienced professionals. They are excited about the response from members of the BPMA – over 50 mentorship applications were submitted. Prof. Eisenmann describes the partnership:
"The [course] is all about learning-by-doing. Students' learning will be amplified by the lessons of experience as they work with volunteer mentors from the BPMA. We're extremely grateful to the BPMA and its members for the generous support they are providing to the next generation of product managers."
The BPMA is happy to provide support to Harvard Business School and its students, as well as an extra learning opportunity for its members as they mentor students – as a bonus, mentors are welcome to sit in on the course.
Harvard’s attention to the product management profession is also a “testament to the importance of this role,” says Sarela Bliman-Cohen, a course mentor and BPMA president. She believes the mentors’ breadth of experience will provide the students with real world perspective as they design and create new products.
Through the semester, students will work on the full development cycle of a software project, with their mentors there to guide their process. Projects from the course’s pilot last year included a revamp of Harvard Business School's MBA Elective Curriculum course selection tool, a taxi sharing mobile application, and a web app for students to organize pick-up sports games. Mentors meet with their graduate student once a month during the fall semester, or more often if they choose. Mentors also allow for job-shadowing opportunities, and act as a resource to discuss career plans.
About the Boston Product Management Association
The Boston Product Management Association (BPMA), founded in 2001, is a vibrant, volunteer-run, professional organization that offers its members, and the product management and product marketing community at large, exceptional opportunities for professional development and growth. Through more than 1,250 registered members and a reach to over 4,500 product professionals, the BPMA links and supports the talented and experience-rich community of practitioners, managers, consultants and service providers in the Boston area. For more information about the BPMA, please visit bostonproducts.org.