Sources: Eric Bartholomew, 785-532-5964, ebar@k-state.edu;
and Paul Bird, pbbird@k-state.edu
Hometown interest: Auburn, Bucyrus, Hays, Holyrood, and Mulvane, Kan.; and Columbia, Mo.
Photo available: http://www.k-state.edu/media/images/nov11/conmgmt113011.jpg
Cutline: Team members, from left: Russell Propp, Tyler Oblinger, Paul Bird, Tony Dowling, Calder Sagen and Kyle Montoya.
News release prepared by: Tyler Sharp, 785-532-2535, tmsharp@k-state.edu

Wednesday, Nov. 30, 2011

Building success: Student team places second in construction management competition

MANHATTAN -- A team of Kansas State University students has continued a tradition of success in the Associated Schools of Construction's student management competition.

The university's commercial construction team placed second at the Associated Schools of Construction's Region IV annual conference recently in Nebraska City, Neb.

Each conference features student management competitions in four divisions: commercial, design-build, heavy highway and residential. Teams are given problem statements prior to the competition to provide background on their project. Planning follows based on the type of construction project to finalize the prequalifications package, which includes the financial statements, past projects and company history. The teams receive their entire project on the day of the competition and work from 6:30 a.m. to midnight in developing a site plan, estimates and schedule. The commercial construction team was assigned a project for constructing a three-story addition to an existing, functioning four-story hospital.

All teams must also complete an oral presentation the day after completing their project. At the completion of the competition, the actual construction company that built the project judges each team. The winners of each division advance to the national competition.

Paul Bird, team member and senior in construction science and management, Auburn, says the experience is greatly beneficial to his future.

"It gives you a flavor of the kind of pressure that you would be under to put a bid proposal together and in a short amount of time," he said. "I have a step-up on people who haven't done it."

Preparation began early in the semester with a series of meetings. Eric Bartholomew, assistant professor of architectural engineering and construction science and a veteran of the commercial construction industry, coached the team. Competition rules prohibit coaches from working with their team on competition day.

Bartholomew, in his first year of coaching the team, is a believer in what the competition provides.

"It's a great learning experience for them," he said. "I don't think they could find another learning experience with that degree of intensity in many other student competitions."

Other team members, all majoring in construction science and management, include: Calder Sagen, senior, Bucyrus; Tony Dowling, senior, Hays; Kyle Montoya, junior, Holyrood; and Tyler Oblinger, senior, Mulvane.

From out of state: Russell Propp, senior, Columbia, Mo.

Past top performances in the competition include a third place finish for the heavy highway team in 2010. The heavy highway team finished first in 2007.