Growing as a project manager: so much more than just a job

Riley Galloway joined NNE as process engineer during her last year at Georgia Tech. Now one year into her employment, she is developing her skills as a project manager, with support from her team leads and other colleagues. Find out why she considers her job at NNE as much more than just a job.


Junior-Project-Manager_Riley-Galloway_small.jpgHow did you get to where you are today?

The fall semester before I graduated from Georgia Tech, I started applying to full-time jobs. I had co-oped at a manufacturing site as a production engineer, project engineer and reliability engineer, but knew that manufacturing wasn’t quite where I belonged. So, I applied. And applied. And applied. I went to every career fair and recruiting session in the hope of finding the perfect job, but none of them truly fit. I wanted some place that would feel like a home and give me a sense of permanence, but most of the job openings for recent graduates were rotational programs.

When I started the spring semester without a job lined up after graduation, I felt like I had somehow failed. In reality, this opportunity to continue to the job search was a blessing in disguise. I continued to apply and talk with recruiters. I connected with people on LinkedIn and reached out via email. I worked hard in my classes and was striving towards graduation.

Finally, I heard from one of the companies I had applied for, NNE. I spoke with Erin, the HR Director, on the phone for my first interview and something felt right about it. There was a personal connection, there was flexibility and most of all, Erin had passion for her job and the company. As I moved through the interview process, I got more and more excited about the potential of becoming a process consultant for NNE.

All of the people I talked with were passionate, driven and inspiring people who cared not only about their work, but about developing the culture of the company. I received my offer and almost immediately accepted. I felt like something just fit. I have been with NNE almost a year now and couldn’t be happier going to work every day. NNE has given me much more than job experience; it has given me a safe space to explore opportunities, to learn about myself and my career, a strong support system, a developed professional network and some of my greatest mentors.

How did you end up in your current role?

I started at NNE as a junior process consultant. I was working part time as a data engineer until I graduated from Georgia Tech. The project I was working on was perfect for me; I could develop my technical skills, there was an endless amount of work, and it was a job I could do from school. When I graduated in May, I moved to Raleigh and transitioned into my full-time role, still on the same project.

I was excited about working in person with my team and driving progress alongside them. I had always pictured myself moving from a technical role towards a project management role, but didn’t know when the “right” time was; how much experience would I need? What is the right experience? How do I develop in that direction? Soon after I had started to ask my team lead these questions, he recommended me to fill in for a project manager that was going on vacation. This experience gave me a taste for what the life of project management would be like – I saw myself growing in both technical skills and soft skills, facilitating discussions and organizing work.

I continued to work in the project management world on various small projects. My most recent small project has expanded into a site-wide project that I’m incredibly excited to start working on. Due to an internal reorganization that will allow for the development of a digitalization team, I have shifted out of the process and mechanical group and into project execution.

While the role that I’m in day-to-day will not change and I will still be able to lead this site project, my development will now be focused on growing as a project manager. Flexibility, on both NNE’s and my part, as well as support from my team leads, my mentors and NNE as a whole has helped me to get to where I am today.


Educational background

B. Sc. Chemical Engineering

NNE history



With a focus on customer success and making a positive impact in the community, NNE US employs process engineers, automation engineers and many other technical positions to identify solutions and help pharmaceutical companies bring products to the market.

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