For the second time in three years, a team of graduate construction
science students from Texas A&M placed first in the nation
in a challenging construction management competition sponsored
by the Associated Schools of Construction (ASC).
The event, held February 2003 in Reno, Nevada, attracted 14 teams
from 11 universities. Representing A&M on the winning team
were team captain Jim DeLapp, and teammates Seenu Kurien, and
Larry McGinn. In addition to a first place trophy the triumphant
Aggies received $1,500 in prize money.
In the annual ASC contest students are given 16 hours to solve
a project management problem and prepare a presentation that is
delivered to a panel of judges the following day.
This year, the students were asked to prepare a project plan
for a new health sciences building at the University of California
at Los Angeles. In addition to an organizational diagram for the
$51 million project, the teams were asked to develop plans for
quality and environmental controls and a project information system.
They also had to come up with a project schedule, a revised cost
estimate, a site utilization plan, a gross billing curve, a work
plan for labor and equipment, and an analysis of profit.
Confounding the task, the proposed project required a phased
work schedule because the building site was severely constrained
within an urban environment.
A&M brought two teams to the competition, as did Stanford
University and the University of Southern California.
“Both of our teams presented what I thought were outstanding
solutions,” said Charles Graham, the team coach and the
Mitchell Endowed Professor of Construction Science at Texas A&M.
“Either team could have been in the top three.”
The third annual ASC Construction Management Competition attracted
over one third of the construction science schools in Western
ASC regions VI and VII. It was the second time A&M placed
first in the event. Aggies took home the first place trophy in
2001 and won honorable mention in 2002.
“I believe the A&M victory will be good for recruiting
future graduate students into our construction management program,”
Graham said. “I was very proud to work with these students.
They are all winners.”