Like actors at the Oscars waiting for the envelope to be opened, their faces were stoic, but filled with anticipation. Standing on the stage were the three final student teams, selected from more than 40 teams around the country who had entered DBIA’s 2013 National Design-Build Student Competition.
Representing Auburn University, California State–Sacramento and Colorado State University, these students came to DBIA’s Design-Build National Conference & Expo in Las Vegas to present their plans for building a residence hall using design-build project delivery in front of a prestigious jury. After much deliberation, the jury selected the California State–Sacramento team as 2013’s first-place winner in front of an audience of more than 1,000 industry professionals.
The leadership ability, mastery of information and communication skills displayed during the presentation portion of the competition set the California State–Sacramento team apart to take the title.
The National Design-Build Student Competition mirrors best practices in design-build project delivery by breaking the competition into a two-phase process. In phase one, a general “problem” statement, or request for qualifications (RFQ), was issued. Teams of students from DBIA’s regional chapters across the country provided broad, all-encompassing solutions to meet the qualifications needed to accomplish the owner’s goals.
The scope of the project was a new college residence hall. The RFQ asked for teams with a history of completing similar projects as well as “professional commitment to excellence, teamwork, innovation and open communication.” The three- to five-floor residence hall would need to include dorms as well as apartments, study rooms, common areas for student interaction, a dining hall and offices for faculty and staff. Students had to work with a size limit of 130,000 square feet and a fixed project cost limit of $40 million.
In phase two, the jury short-listed three teams as the finalists. They had one week to respond in full to the request for proposal (RFP) the jury issued. These three finalists went to the 2013 Design-Build Conference & Expo in Las Vegas to compete in front of a jury consisting of design-build experts (representing the owner) for the grand prize.
“The competition was a great experience, as it familiarized us with what is expected in the construction industry,” Colorado State Team Captain Zach Hoover says, “and it allowed us to exemplify what we have learned in school so far and put it into practice.”
In their presentations, each team member spoke for 10 minutes before answering questions from the jury, who relied on their vast experience in the industry to come up with questions the owner would have asked in a real-world situation. “It’s as real life as they can get,” says Mikael Anderson, chair of the Sacramento State Construction Management Department.
“The amount of information we needed to review and familiarize ourselves with throughout both phases of the competition provided a glance on the importance of being diligent with our time and identifying the key factors that will allow us to succeed in the future,” remarks Javier Mederos, president of the California State-Sacramento DBIA Student Chapter.
And teaching students what they need to know for the future to help advance our industry is exactly the goal of this competition.
2014 DBIA National Design-Build Student Competition – Call For Entries Open Until March 24
- Teams of Four students from any design and construction university are welcome to submit.
- Registrations & Letters of Intent will be accepted through March 24, 2014.
- Project Scope – The proposed design-build project is a 120,000 square-foot activity and recreation center on a liberal arts college campus in the United States.
To learn more or to register, please visit:
www.dbia.org and click on the Students and Faculty Section or call DBIA at 202-682-0110.