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Students take top awards at construction management competition

Group photo of virtual design and construction team.
The virtual design and construction team placed first in their respective competition.

Washington State University student teams took top prizes, including first place and a second place, in the recent Associated Schools of Construction competition, the largest construction management competition in the U.S.

More than 1,450 students from 53 universities and 21 states participated in the competition, which was held in Reno, Nevada. The competition requires students to solve complex problems in less than 24 hours, present proposals, and participate in a rigorous question and answer session in a business‑like setting.

A WSU group, coached by Anne Anderson, assistant professor of construction management, took first place in the virtual design and construction category. As part of the competition, sponsored by Webcor Builders, the students were given several real‑world building problems for which they developed and presented software‑based solutions in less than a day. The student team included Matt Hill, Max King, Kenny Reeck, Riley O’Keeffe, Chase Bos, and Dylan Sterling with alternate Sarah Carney.

WSU’s commercial team, meanwhile, placed second in that category. Coached by Jason Peschel, clinical associate professor and program head of construction management, and sponsored by Holland Construction, the integrated student team used construction management skills such as scheduling, estimating, site logistics, site safety, and technical writing to develop a proposal for a real‑life construction problem. The category sponsor was Hensel Phelps Construction Co. The students included Brady Swanson, Tanner Olson, Ryan Quick, Jenny Schneider, Rebecca Nelson, and Samuel Stargell with alternates Kevin McLean and Richie Hopkins.

Group photo of the commercial team.
WSU’s commercial team.

“We are incredibly proud of all four of our teams and continue to be impressed with the amount of work they put into preparing for this event,” Peschel said.

Several industry partners, including Exxel Pacific, Howard S. Wright, Mortenson, Swinerton, Absher, Granite, Graham, and the Northwest Construction Consumer Council, provided financial support and/or practice problems for the WSU student teams before the competition.

“We are incredibly grateful for the tremendous industry support – in the form of financial gifts but also in time and talent – that we have here at WSU,” Peschel said. “Our students are fortunate to get such amazing help in preparation for the competition but they are also gaining valuable skills that they will bring to the workplace through these experiences.”

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