The Cal Poly Pomona Design Build team took first place at this year’s Associated Schools of Construction (ASC) regional competition, continuing its winning streak for two consecutive years. The regional competition, comprising schools in California, Hawaii, Oregon and Washington, was held between Feb. 6-7 in Sparks, Nevada.
ASC provides an opportunity for students to showcase their knowledge and talents on construction while receiving immediate feedback from some of the industry’s top corporations.
Although the CPP team did not have an official sponsor, one of its mentor companies, PENTA Building Group, provided $1,000 for the team’s drive to Nevada.
With 15 universities competing, Swinerton, this year’s sponsor for the design build category, assigned each team to design the construction of a public safety center. Along with the architectural design, students also had to develop a sustainability scorecard, management plan and safety plan with consideration of the set time frame and budget. Each team had 15 hours, from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m., to complete the construction plan.
Past noon, Swinerton added addendums, such as accelerating the construction time frame and requesting the addition of a library, which challenged the team to work around the new adjustments.
After submitting the design and construction plan, the team had to organize materials for a presentation that would be demonstrated on the following day by 11 p.m.
Placing first, the CPP Design Build team was acknowledged for its sophisticated architectural design that outshined the 14 other universities.
“When our team placed first, we were jumping at first. Then, we were hugging and crying,” said Azeb Mallick, a fourth-year construction engineering student who was the project executive and co-captain of the team.
The CPP students began their preparations eight months prior to the competition. Starting in June 2019, members met weekly on Sundays for five to seven hours, dedicating their time to reviewing relevant materials.
With three months leading up to the competition, the team began its full, 17-hour training from 6 a.m. to 11 p.m. to mimic the actual competition. Participating members also had to organize a weekly presentation to receive feedback from their mentor companies — Hathaway Dinwiddie, a construction company that specializes in design-build, and PENTA Building Group, a company that specializes in construction management.
“Once school started, it was really difficult to balance the school workload and competition preparations,” said Pedro Ramirez, a fourth-year civil engineering student who was the project superintendent of the team. “But we helped each other out and got through it together.”
One of the biggest civil engineering career fairs is held for all participants the day after the competition. Over 100 corporations from across the nation gather to recruit participating students and often offer an interview or internship on the spot.
“By participating in the competition, I gained a lot of connections,” said Sepehr Ramshini, a second-year construction management student who was the principal architect for the team. “When we finished our presentation, companies were in line just to talk to us and I was offered a summer internship.”
The CPP ASC team will be hosting an orientation on March 3 in Building 9, room 211 from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. to select 10 students to join next year’s competition. Resumes will be accepted for two weeks followed by interviews for advancing students. There are no requirements to apply.
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