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People of EuroPIM: André Dechange

Today we have a very special post on our #PeopleofEuroPIM series! We made an interview with André Dechange, the director of the EuroMPM master programme. 
💬Nice to see you André! Tell us please a little bit about yourself. What’s your background and what do you teach? 
«Hi! So my name is André, I am the director of the master programme “European Master of Project Management”. I live in Herdecke with my wife, daughter, and a cat. In my free time I enjoy traveling, mountain biking, skiing, and in general spending time with family and friends.
Before starting my career at the University of Applied Sciences and Arts Dortmund I worked for a long time in consulting business. For ten years I’d been working at Ericsson, three of which being the Head of the Project Management Office.»
💬That’s impressive! So it sounds like your life has always been connected to project management? 
«Actually, it wasn’t. But I am convinced that the business life of every person nowadays is connected to project management. Initially, I studied Electrical Engineering at TU Dortmund, then Business Administration, and did my PhD in the sphere of Electrical Engineering as well.»
💬And how then did you come to teaching?
«The idea started coming up when I worked at Ericson, because at that time I was a project management trainer, and it was something I enjoyed doing and wanted to pursue. So, then I started giving lectures in various universities in Nürnberg, Oldenburg, etc., and that was how my scientific career started.»
💬Do you have a favorite course among those which you currently teach?
«I teach Fundamentals of Project Management, which I started 10 years ago, and it is based on various didactical materials such as learning videos, quizzes, cases, and I really enjoy working and developing all those materials. The other 2 courses I teach are Multi-Project Management and Implementing PM in an organization. These 2 courses are rather practical, and I get a chance to share my own experience, teaching students how to apply the theory in real life, which I find very interesting as well.»
💬What do you like the most about teaching? 
«The main reason why I enjoy teaching is bringing knowledge and sharing my experience with students. I am also interested in the didactical side of teaching, and, of course, being able to discuss exciting topics with students.»
💬What do you think are the advantages of studying the EuroMPM programme? 
«Since we are at the University of Applied Sciences and Arts, all the courses are practically oriented and prepare the students to work in real life. The students get to work on real projects, participate in seasonal schools together with our partner universities and do internships, which, combined with the valuable experience of the professors and programme coordinators, makes the EuroMPM programme truly unique.  
Besides, the international focus of the programme gives students a chance to level up their intercultural cooperation skills and even do an internship or a semester abroad.»
💬Who do you think the programme suits the most? 
«Good question! Since the career opportunities after graduating from the EuroMPM programme are quite broad, it is open to people of various backgrounds and personalities. However, you surely need to be a team player, enjoy managing people, be ready to collaborate in an intercultural environment and of course be ready to just have fun together.»
💬And last question. Can you give one piece of advice for students, that you wish you were given at their age? 
«Well, I was a student around 30 years ago and since then lots of things have changed (laughs), but I’d say the most important skill nowadays is the ability to be agile and open to new opportunities. Just try things, explore, and only through experience you can understand what you truly want to pursue. And of course, never forget your vision and the goal which you have ahead of you.»