Sources: Fred Hasler, 785-532-5964, fhasler@k-state.edu;
and Julia Keen, 785-532-3575, jkeen@k-state.edu
Hometown connection for: Burlington, Manhattan, Ogden and Olathe, Kan.; and Wilbur, Neb.
Note to editor: Sean Kolich is a graduate of Olathe South High School.

Monday, Oct. 10, 2011

Continued success: Architectural engineering team finishes in top two of international competition for fifth year in a row

MANHATTAN -- A team of Kansas State University architectural engineering students has continued the university's success in an international design competition.

The team took second place in the heating, ventilation and air-conditioning systems selection category of a recent student design competition sponsored by the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers.

K-State has placed first or second in the international competition for the last five years, and has finished in the top five of the event since 2004, according to the team's advisers, Fred Hasler, assistant professor, and Julia Keen, associate professor, in K-State's department of architectural engineering and construction science.

"For the competition, our students must select the best heating, ventilating and air-conditioning, or HVAC, system for the project that the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers has chosen," Hasler said. "This requires students to analyze several different types of systems and chose the best one. They have to meet a list of criteria and prove their system is the best."

K-State team members, all seniors in architectural engineering, include: Jordan Bartholomew, Burlington; Curtis Whittit, Manhattan; Sean Kolich, Olathe; Kimberly Pierson, Ogden; and Elizabeth Ourecky, Wilbur, Neb.

For the second-place finish, one team member gets to attend the winter conference of the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers in Chicago in January 2012. The team's project will be part of a poster display at the conference.

Keen says K-State's success in the competition is important.

"It validates and is an indicator of the strength of our architectural engineering and construction science programs when compared to other programs across the country," Keen said. "It also gives us exposure to industry leaders. They see that K-State produces high quality students and gives them real-world applications for them to apply the skills they've gained."

Keen said the competition also shows how dedicated K-State students are to learning their future profession.

"They are willing to put in the time and effort to create an excellent product, and that's really commendable. I'm impressed with their dedication to this competition," she said. "The College of Engineering does an excellent job of preparing students to participate in competitions like this one. A lot of these students have had the opportunity to work alongside professionals in the industry during internships, which lets them bring experience to the table when it comes to competitions."