Mentor Profile Demonstrates Why We Volunteer
support the growth of regional communities and encourage volunteer leadership within chapters in my region. I
want to understand the challenges
these chapters face and help them align
to the strategic objectives established
by the PMI Board.
Profile Continued from page 1
PMI: Sounds like a lot of hard work
and commitment. What motivates
you to continue putting in volunteer hours?
Dr. Pokharel: In addition to career and
family obligations, I typically spend
about 15 to 20 hours each month
mentoring chapter leaders in matters
relating to chapter governance, and
participating in Leadership Institute
Meetings, telephone calls and webinars
I have volunteered by choice, because I
enjoy sharing information and learning.
With the volunteering opportunities
that PMI offers, you set yourself on the
path for lifelong learning and sharing. At
the same time, I have definitely become
an effective time manager.
And, of course, it is important that my
university gives me full support and
encouragement to get involved with
global professional societies by allowing
me to attend meetings outside the
The understanding from my family is
enormous, considering the additional
amount of time I spend travelling for
mentoring activities, participating in
teleconferences and mentoring
PMI: We’d like to hear about your
very first encounter with PMI. When
and how did you get involved?
Dr. Pokharel: I have always had a
strong interest in project management.
My very first encounter with PMI
should be credited to Yeo Khim Teck,
then interim president of the PMI
Singapore Chapter (in 2000) and a
professorial colleague in Nanyang
Technological University, Singapore.
As an academician,
PMI] have served as
for me to take to
the classroom at my
He asked me if I would be interested in
volunteering with the PMI Singapore
Chapter, then an emerging chapter.
Once I met the interim team, there was
no looking back. Alex Siow, the first
elected president of the PMI Singapore
Chapter, coached me and gave me
enormous support to conduct chapter
governance in the newly created PMI
PMI: Share with us how volunteering
with PMI has helped you overcome
challenges in the course of your project management career.
Dr. Pokharel: Volunteering with PMI
has given me valuable opportunities to
network extensively with like-minded
project managers. As an academician,
the experiences have served as important lessons for me to take to the classroom at my university.
My association with PMI has also given
me great exposure to A Guide to the
Project Management Body of Knowledge
(PMBOK® Guide), which covers relevant
and practical concepts. The project integration management concept in the
PMBOK® Guide streamlines my actions
for project integration and enables me
to add value to the project at hand.
I would like to thank PMI for believing in
me and providing an opportunity to be
in this important role of mentoring
chapters for good governance. In turn,
my region members have also mentored
me to understand the profession better.
I would also like to thank my employer,
the Department of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering of Qatar University
for providing me with the support to
carry on with volunteering activities. I
thank them all.
“To me, volunteering is creating a win-win environment. You will fulfill
your inner self, not only by sharing what you have but also by knowing
what you can gain from your surroundings and your association with
passionate people. I have gained many friends with this role. Do care and
share, and ultimately, everyone gains.”
— Shaligram Pokharel, PhD, Mentor, Region 15 (Southeast Asia)
Get involved. Make a difference. Be a volunteer.