CSU, Chico News

Construction Management Students Perform like Champions at Annual Competition

Date: 03-10-2009

Kathleen McPartland
Public Affairs
Lori Brown
Construction Management

California State University, Chico Department of Construction Management students took home honors at the 22nd Annual Associated Schools of Construction (ASC) Student Competition, Feb. 11-14 at Sparks, Nev.

From among 34 universities representing up to 1,000 students and 16 states, CSU, Chico construction management student teams brought home three national championship awards: two second places in the Marine Construction Division and Pre-Construction (PreCon) Division and a third place in Building Information Modeling (BIM).

In addition to the three teams that placed, eight other teams from CSU, Chico competed, including teams in the divisions of Heavy Civil, Multi-Family, Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED), BIM, Commercial, Design Build, Electrical and Mechanical. Faculty advisors were Lori Brown, Denny Gier, Doug Chelson, Chris Souder, Willem Kymmell, Mark Maybee, Joel Arthur, Kris Knapp and David Shirah.

“This is an extremely demanding competition,” said Souder, the heavy civil and marine coach. “Students are given 24 hours to map out the process a construction firm would go through—developing work schedules, estimates, bids, design analysis and other tasks—on an actual construction project, and then present it to a team of expert judges.”

Some of the other universities represented were Oregon State University, University of Washington, Stanford University, University of Southern California, Brigham Young University, Colorado State University, Sacramento State, Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo and Arizona State University.

The marine problem for the national competition provides an example of the kinds of problems given to the various teams. The marine problem was to estimate, schedule and evaluate subcontractor quotes and develop a bid for a pier at Terminal 91, Berth M in the Port of Seattle. The students had to put a cost estimate together for the pier demolition, pile driving, dredging, precast concrete and cast-in-place concrete. Each team was given a set of plans and specifications, subcontractor quotes, labor rates, material unit costs, contract, general conditions and bid forms. Some of the work was from the land and the rest was from floating barges with cranes. The next morning, the team presented their estimate to a team of judges from General Construction, Seattle, the sponsoring company.

This is the second time in CSU, Chico’s history that the construction management department has placed in the Marine Construction Division’s national competition.

“We started preparing our teams in September for a February competition,” said Souder “It just goes to show you how much the students want to do well at this event and how dedicated the faculty advisors are.”

In addition to the successful teams, Dan Dixon, a CMGT student on the PreCon team, took home a “Best Speaker” award. The event also presents CSU, Chico’s students to potential employers. More than 85 companies participated in the job fair accompanying the competition.