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The Roofing Industry Alliance for Progress recently hosted four teams to compete in the finals of the fourth annual Construction Management Student Competition at the 2018 International Roofing Expo® (IRE) in New Orleans. The finalist teams were chosen from seven undergraduate universities across the U.S. who submitted written proposals to competition judges from the roofing industry.
All seven teams were tasked with creating a company to bid on installing a roof system on the Audubon Aquarium of the Americas in New Orleans, while the facility remained operational. Each team submitted a qualifications package which required the students to research the project, review the plans and specifications, and assemble a full preconstruction proposal testing their knowledge of roofing means and methods, project management, estimating, safety, and quality control. The four teams receiving the highest scores on their qualifications package and invited to give oral presentations to the panel in New Orleans were Auburn University, Colorado State University, Louisiana State University, and the University of Florida.
Following oral presentation by the teams, the panel of judges selected McWhorter School of Building Science’s student team as the winners of the competition. The team from Colorado State University placed second in the competition.
The Auburn team, coached by Professor Lauren Redden, was represented by Jordan Edwards, Alex Gomez, Jason McCay, Hannah Redifer, and Matthew Youngblood. Kyle Thomas of Thomas Roofing, Mobile, served as the industry coach.
Auburn received a team trophy and a $5,000 L.B. Conway scholarship for the McWhorter School. Hannah Redifer received a separate honor being named Best Individual Student Presenter. Redifer was selected out of all competing students that made oral presentations. The Best Individual Student Presenter also received the gift of a new iPad.
“Our students worked as a team diligently to learn everything they could about the roofing industry and roofing-specific management practices,” said Lauren Redden. “It was such a thrill to see their dedication and passion result in a win.”
“It was an outstanding performance,” said Richard Burt, head of the McWhorter School of Building Science. “We have had a strong partnership with the National Roofing Contractors Association (NRCA) for over five years now, but this was the first time we have won the competition.”
The goal of the IRE partnership with construction schools is to raise awareness of the roofing industry by roofing-related curriculum that can be incorporated into existing construction management undergraduate degree programs; exploring scholarship programs for students and faculty members; and developing an internship program with interested Alliance members. In addition to providing a significant learning opportunity, the Alliance's 2018 Construction Management Student Competition fosters an environment meant to bring out the best in each team, encourage dialogue among the students and foster team spirit.
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