Grad profile

Kevin Vennesland

“The program boosted my confidence and changed how I manage projects and lead teams.”

Kevin Vennesland, a business support analyst from North Vancouver, is only one of many mid-career adults who have kept a New Year’s resolution thanks to a part-time diploma program at SFU Continuing Studies.

Every year as the holidays approach, Vennesland takes stock of his life. In 2010, he decided he wanted to take on more project leadership responsibilities at work—he loved the idea of seeing projects through to a successful conclusion.

After some research, he decided that education would give him both the skills and credibility he needed to lead—and a recommendation from a co-worker, along with a thorough analysis of competing programs, helped him determine that SFU Continuing Studies was his best option.


Vennesland began the part-time Diploma in Applied Project Management (now Certificate in Project Management) at SFU Surrey in March 2011, and graduated in August.

“Balancing work, life, and school was certainly a challenge,” he said. “Fortunately, the convenient class schedule helped ensure that I didn't get too far behind. Practical courses, engaging instructors, and a diverse group of students made the learning experience feel more like fun than work.”

The expertise he gained has already made a difference at the office. Vennesland’s manager is taking advantage of his new qualifications, giving him more responsibility.

“The program has certainly boosted my confidence and has changed how I manage projects and lead teams,” Vennesland said. “There's no question that SFU Continuing Studies has helped me achieve my short term career goals. And it feels great to put a big check mark next to that resolution.”

“The program boosted my confidence and changed how I manage projects and lead teams.”