Page 1

MCWHORTER SCHOOL OF BUILDING SCIENCE

vol. 31

// fall 2019

magazine

// THE AUBURN EFFECT How Two Auburn Alums Found Their Way Home— and Built a Hotel in the Process


04

12

14 18

03

MESSAGE FROM THE SCHOOL HEAD RICHARD BURT

17 FACULTY/STAFF NEWS LINDSEY MOTLEY

04

ALUMNI PROFILE BRIAN AND KIM WIRTH

18 ALUMNI PROFILE ALLEN FAMILY

11 UNDERGRADUATE UPDATE VALERIE BARRY

22 PROGRAM UPDATES MULTIDISCIPLINARY TEAMWORK

12 IEB HIGHLIGHTS JAY REED

23

14

RESEARCH PROFESSOR AZHAR’S PAPER AWARDED

IEB HIGHLIGHTS BILLY NORRELL

16 IEB HIGHLIGHTS MIKE THOMPSON // QUOIN Richard Burt / Head and McWhorter Endowed Chair Colleen Bourdeau / CADC Communications and Marketing Director Madison Champion / CADC Graphic Designer Brandon Clarke / Lead Administrative Assistant

// CONTRIBUTORS Latha Bhavnani / writer & editor Paul Holley / Director, Center for Construction Innovation and Collaboration Miranda Nobles / Office of Communications and Marketing Karen Rogers / Associate Dean for Graduate Studies and Research

and Associate Professor

Cameron Westbrook / writer & editor

2 \\


// MESSAGE FROM the school head Welcome to the Fall 2019 edition of Quoin. I am writing this after returning from our first ever Industry Advisory Council meeting in Texas and watching the Tigers beat the Aggies. The visit provided me the opportunity to see the impact our alumni are making all over the country and it provided me the opportunity to keep our more remote friends up-to-date about the great things going on at BSCI. This was the fourth of these regional IAC meetings I have held this year; the others have been in Nashville, Atlanta and Birmingham. We are planning visits in Florida and Mobile for the spring. This past year has been incredibly busy. We have completed two major construction projects in the Gorrie Center. The renovation of the former demonstration lab to accommodate a new Construction Visualization Laboratory made possible by lead gifts from Miller and Frances Gorrie and Holder Construction. The Viz Lab, as it’s called, is equipped with an Oblong Mezzanine communication system, a 27-monitor video wall. This area also includes three competition room

This upcoming year will also be extremely busy. This spring we will

spaces made possible by gifts from EMJ Construction,

have our accreditation visit by the American Council for Construction

Caddell Construction and Atlanta Building Science Alumni.

Education (ACCE). This is an event that happens every six years.

We also completed renovation of Gorrie 303 into an

The accreditation process involves the submission of a self-study

Engaged Active Student Learning (EASL) classroom made

document at the beginning of December, followed by an on-site

possible through the support of 9 industry sponsors. We

visit in March. Following approval from the Board of Trustees in

are also currently completing the renovation of our outside

June, we will also find out later this year if our proposal to have a

field laboratory on Samford Avenue thanks to a generous

PhD in Building Construction has been approved by the Alabama

gift in kind from Robins & Morton.

Commission on Higher Education. If our submission is successful,

We have also been busy teaching more students. This fall we will have 567 undergraduates in the program; that is the most since 2008. At the same time, we will increase

we hope to admit students to this program in August 2020. This looks set to be an exciting year in the school!

our number of graduates per year from 120 to 152 in 2020. With so many students graduating we are glad to have our new Career Services Specialist, Lindsey Motley, on board to help our students as they transition into the workplace. You can find out more about Lindsey in this edition of Quoin.

Richard Burt WDE!

You will also be able to read about some of our Industry Executive Board members. The program is blessed to receive support from both the state’s Associated General Contractors (AGC) and the Associated Builders & Contractors (ABC) construction organizations. We have recently added their CEO and President, Billy Norrell, and Jay Reed to our Industry

In August 2020 the McWhorter School of Building Science will celebrate the anniversary of its first graduate, Barney Wilborn ‘45. As

Executive Board, and you can read about their experiences

we get close to this important milestone in

on the board in this issue.

the program, we would like to accumulate important events, special memories, and an image archive. We ask for your help in gathering these items by visiting the following link or QR Code.

aub.ie/share-bsci-75


4 \\


ALUMNI PROFILE

// Y’ALL CHECKING IN? A Glimpse into Auburn’s First Boutique Hotel

Brian

and

Kim

Wirth

hadn’t

intended on opening a hotel in Auburn. It was a Saturday like any other during football season on The Plains. Kim Wirth was in town on a recruitment trip when she saw that the historic Wittel Dormitory was up for sale. “She didn’t tell me anything about it,” Brian recalls. “All she said was, ‘You’re going to go look at Wittel Dorm before the game on Saturday.’” The Wirths met while students at Auburn

University

in

1991.

Brian

graduated from The McWhorter School of Building Science with a Bachelor’s degree in Building Construction. Kim studied Journalism in the College of Liberal Arts. They were introduced by mutual friends—a familiar beginning to many Auburn love stories. After graduation and getting married, the Wirths packed up and moved north. There, they both fell in love all over again—this time with historic homes. “We were some of the first participants in the renovation of the Capitol

Hill

recalls

of

neighborhood,” their

time

in

Brian D.C. // 5


Mr. and Mrs. Wirth went on to renovate

“The overarching thing for us was

several

spaces to gather—places you want to

more

homes

around

the

country—in Memphis, Auburn, and the

come to,” Kim says.

Gulf Coast. “We believe in respecting

Guests at The Collegiate will enjoy the thoughtfully outfitted rooms— each with a unique character and feel.”

the history of the building and the

Bar

context of the place,” Kim says. This

Collegiate will enjoy the thoughtfully

noble philosophy is apparent in The

outfitted rooms—each with a unique

Collegiate Hotel, formerly the Wittel

character and feel. The hotel boasts a

Dormitory and the Wirth’s latest project.

total of forty guest rooms, several of

Having been open since June 2018, the

aside,

guests

at

The

which are pet-friendly suites.

attractive structure has already found its home in the “Loveliest Village.”

Kim was responsible for sourcing the décor—almost all of it being original art

The lobby/parlor area serves as a gentle

or antiques that were in the old Wittel

introduction to the land of orange and

Dorm. During the weeks leading up to

blue. Plush furniture in muted tones and

the highly-anticipated grand opening,

beautiful, original artwork greet guests

Kim and Brian were contacted by Pat

as they enter. The real showstopper is

Wittel Tremaine, an Auburn local who

the giant eagle mosaic in the entryway.

grew

Comprised of thousands of round sequins,

dormitory. The Wirths were able to

it casts a shimmering reflection on the

purchase many antiques from The

opposite wall, weather permitting. The

Wittel’s family collection, and these

traditional wood floors lead guests to a

pieces add even more character and

large,

authenticity to the hotel.

marble-top

bar

outfitted

in

playfully retro décor. Brian and Kim wanted to create a space for everyone. 6 \\

visitors

up

in

the

historic

women’s


// 7


Comprised of thousands of round sequins, [the eagle mosaic in the entryway] casts a shimmering reflection on the opposite wall.�

8 \\


The overarching thing for us was spaces to gather—places you want to come to.” KIM WIRTH

Brian and Kim worked with Rebecca Conrad and Amanda Whitaker of ANF Architects in Memphis, TN. The architects, both Auburn alumni, were enthusiastic about the Wirth’s desire to create a boutique hotel that was steeped in a sense of place. Memphis contractor H. Montgomery

Martin,

of

Montgomery

Martin Contractors, was another key figure in the project. Mr. Martin graduated from the McWhorter School of Building Science in 1978 with a Bachelor’s degree in Building

Construction.

The

renovation

process included many businesses and people with ties to the Auburn-Opelika community. While it may have been easier, less expensive, and taken less time to go with convention, doing things “the hard way” has really paid off. The Collegiate has been fully booked for every home football game weekend this year. // 9


Both Brian and Kim attribute their success

to

their

time

at

Auburn

University. “I didn’t come from a construction family, so the industry was new to me. It was always something that appealed to me; there’s a lot of satisfaction in building a project and seeing it through to completion,” Brian recalls. His favorite memories were from his days in The McWhorter School’s co-op program and getting a

the reception desk which is covered in

Most people spend four to five years trying to get out [of Auburn] and twenty years trying to get back.”

Glomeratas from years past. “We

BRIAN WIRTH

taste of the construction industry from the start. “I wholeheartedly believe that the connections you made in school made The Collegiate happen,” Kim says, looking at Brian. Their daughter, Hannah, is checking in some guests at

always agreed that we wanted to come back to Auburn one day,” says Brian with a smile. “Most people spend four to five years trying to get out and twenty years trying to get back.”

10 \\


UNDERGRADUATE UPDATES

// UNDERGRADUATE STUDENT BARRY participates in the Kiewit Leadership Program Valerie Barry, a Junior majoring in Building Science, was selected to attend the

2018

Women’s

Construction

Leadership Seminar in Aurora, Colorado. The annual conference is a two-day event sponsored by Kiewit Construction and aims to “develop the leadership skills of collegiate women.” “Our 11th annual WCLS event was a great success due to the curiosity, confidence, and passion of the 50+ young professionals who attended,” said Lauren Collins, business partner at Kiewit. “Valerie was a

welcomed

attendee

with

her

eagerness to contribute and insightful collaboration with the other attendees.”

We work hard to ensure that all our students are able to receive an exceptional construction education, regardless of gender or background.” RICHARD BURT

Valerie says she has always been interested in working in construction because her father is an architect. “After graduation, I see myself working for a

During the conference in Colorado,

are today.” The McWhorter School

larger

Valerie had the opportunity to connect

of Building Science is dedicated to

an

with many successful women in the

being an inclusive learning environment.

internship lined up this summer with

construction industry. In recent years,

“We work hard to ensure that all our

Holder

have

construction firms have made efforts to

students

previously interned locally with Carter &

improve diversity in the field, but women

exceptional

Carter working in preconstruction.” She

still are very much in the minority,

regardless of gender or background,”

says some of her favorite memories

representing only about 10% of the

says

from Building Science stem directly

industry’s workforce. This is one of the

Richard Burt. “We were happy to

from the hands-on experience that is a

reasons why events like the Women’s

support Valerie’s participation in the

hallmark of the program. “I really enjoyed

Construction Leadership Seminar are

Women’s

shadowing the commercial construction

important, Valerie says. “It was great to

Seminar, as she represents some of the

competition team last fall and watching

hear from successful women in the

best qualities of our program.”

them win first place in Peachtree City.”

industry and how they got to where they

commercial

company,”

she

says.

Construction,

construction “I and

have I

are

able

to

construction

Professor

and

receive

School

Construction

an

education, Head

Leadership

// 11


IEB HIGHLIGHTS

// MEET IEB MEMBERS Reed and Norrell JAY REED President, ABC of Alabama Jay Reed is one of the newest members invited to serve on the Industry Executive Board for the McWhorter School of Building Science. In 1994, Reed graduated from the University of West Alabama with a degree in Business Administration and a minor in Marketing, and soon thereafter

he

started

with

the

Walmart Management Program. In 1996, Reed joined the Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC of Alabama) in membership marketing, and rose through the ranks, reaching vice president. He currently serves as president. Reed manages approximately 700 construction-related companies at ABC. Over the years, he has participated in an assortment of assignments including publisher of Alabama Construction News and founder of the Alabama Employers for Immigration Reform. He was a member

of

Immigration

Governor Commission

Riley’s and

presently sits on the Board of the Alabama Council of Association Executives

and

the

Workforce

Innovation and Opportunity Act Board of Directors for Jefferson County.

12 \\


Q&A WITH JAY REED As President of ABC, what changes have

What have you learned as a member

you seen in the industry?

of the IEB for the McWhorter School

Technology! From the services available online

of Building Science?

in pre-construction to the actual use of

Getting

technology in the field, our world is different. A

across the industry can only make the

various

quick internet search shows a robot laying brick,

school better. As president of ABC of

a drone checking for roof repairs and even

Alabama, I get to interact with people

unmanned construction equipment. Despite the

from every sector of our industry. From

increased use of technology, the need for solid

a senior in high school attending our

relationships hasn’t changed. This business is

Academy of Craft Training, to the

about relationships and trust.

President

of

perspectives

one

of

the

from

Reed manages approximately 700 construction-related companies at [the Associated Builders and Contractors of Alabama].”

largest

Construction firms in America, to the end-users of what we build, they all see

What are the biggest trends in

our industry differently. I think listening

construction today?

to those views and bringing them to the

Pre-Fab/Modular construction is starting to

table in our meetings will benefit the

really

board and the college.

take

its

place

in

the

industry.

I also perceive collaboration, where the entire team comes together earlier and earlier in a

I have two principles that guide my

project. From architect to engineer to builder to

professional

trade contractors, I’m seeing them all get

contractors that I will enthusiastically

together much sooner than they did five years

and effectively lead the commercial

ago. The results of this are proving greater cost

construction industry to a better place

savings and on-time delivery.

every day. The second is to treat others

life.

First,

I

promise

the way you would like to be treated. The shortage of workforce is the biggest

Being kind to people is so simple.

challenge to building and construction. I’m seeing craftsmen shortages and wage reports in our industry projected by the end of 2019 that are staggering. Finding a solution to this labor shortage should be on everyone minds.

Getting various perspectives from across the industry can only make the [McWhorter School of Building Science] better.” JAY REED

// 13


BILLY NORRELL CEO, AGC of Alabama Billy Norrell graduated from Auburn in 1990 with a degree in Public Relations. After graduation, he moved to Washington D.C., where he worked for former U.S. House of Representatives member Bill Dickinson of Montgomery and U.S. House of Representatives member Sonny Callahan of Mobile. During his time in D.C., he learned “how government worked and about the issues confronting different trade associations.” In 1994, Norrell returned to Alabama to work

for

Auburn

University

in

its

Governmental Affairs office. Growing up in a family that operated a road construction

Q&A WITH BILLY NORRELL What is your biggest concern

In your opinion, what is the

looking forward?

main role of the IEB?

business in Greenville, Alabama sparked his

I believe the biggest concerns for the

As CEO of AGC, I have taken close

interest

construction

interest in helping students develop

in

Alabama

Road

Builders

industry

are

safety

and

Association (ARBA). His father, H. Grady

efficiency, two areas where the industry

connections

Norrell, owned G.W. Norrell Contracting

struggles. It is a dangerous business, but

student chapters. Auburn’s chapter is

Co. in Georgiana, Alabama. The company is

recent improvements have been made to

AGC’s crown jewel, and we are proud of

now in its seventh decade of operation and

increase worker safety. Wearables, devices

the work they do and the connections

third generation of Norrells. In 1998, he

that collect and deliver data about a

they make with the industry. These

became ARBA’s next executive director—

worker’s environment and activites, and

connections

the

drones, used for surveying sites, are slowly

meaningful career opportunities and the

being adopted.

perpetuation of Alabama AGC loyalty.

regularly interacted with the Alabama

Workforce development is one of the

As a member of the IEB, I will strive to

Associated General Contractors (AGC) on

measures AGC is working on, among

do what’s best for Auburn and its

legislative and regulatory issues and worked

others. The association will work with the

students. I have always enjoyed working

with longtime CEO of Alabama AGC, Henry

Department of Commerce to create more

with people, and the group always comes

Hagood, who recruited Norrell to follow him

scholarships

up with good solutions to challenging

when he retired.

interested in studying building trades.

same

organization

where

his

grandfather, G.W. Norrell, and his father

with

lead

industry

to

through

long-term,

had served as presidents. At ARBA, he

and

grants

for

people

problems. Studying at Auburn University is a tradition in the Norrell family: my father (1949), sister (1972), brother (1980), and

I believe the biggest concerns for the construction industry are safety and efficiency, two areas where the industry struggles. It is a dangerous business.” BILLY NORRELL

14 \\

several nephews and cousins went to Auburn. My oldest son is a sophomore, and I have two more boys that I expect to follow in the coming years.


I have always enjoyed working with people, and [the IEB] always comes up with good solutions to challenging problems.� BILLY NORRELL

// 15


IEB HIGHLIGHTS

// INDUSTRY EXECUTIVE BOARD MEMBER Mike Thompson Many Alabamans are unaware of the construction industry’s

solution,” Thompson said. “There is a learning element to that

impact on the state’s economy. It’s significant: more than $10

approach that I believe is critical to personal development and

billion, annually. The individuals who lead the Alabama

growth within an organization.”

construction industry are committed to further growth and improvement—Mike Thompson, in particular.

Many of the lessons Thompson has learned come from his varied experience in the industry. Beginning his career immediately after

A 1982 graduate of Auburn University’s Building Science program

graduation as a field engineer for Robins & Morton, he was

and former Visiting Professor, Mike Thompson is the Vice

responsible for layout, quality control and management of trade

President of Operational Support and Planning at Robins &

partners for the construction of a medical clinic in Houston. Today,

Morton. Thompson says his interest in construction began at a

he says that experience was foundational to the rest of his career.

very young age, and he credits the Auburn Building Science program with expanding his interest through practical educational

“As Vice President of Operational Support and Planning, I am now

experience.

responsible for preconstruction services, VDC+C (Virtual Design and

Construction

+

Coordination)

and

other

operational

“The fact that many of the [Building Science] instructors came

technologies, scheduling services and corporate information

from industry added credibility to the instruction,” Thompson

technologies,”

says. “I like constant change associated with construction and

construction, he sees two areas of dramatic change. “Technology

the fact that no two projects are the same. Construction is the

will continue to disrupt our industry. The challenge is identifying

perfect industry to experience that type of environment.”

the solutions that provide real value and deploying those solutions

says

Thompson.

Regarding

the

future

of

in a timely manner. The other change is related to our industryA typical day for Thompson begins by coordinating with members

wide craft professional shortage. I think the continuing competition

of his team and reviewing the work ahead. In addition to his day-

for the limited numbers of craft professionals will force us to

to-day work, he ensures that his teams are properly trained,

elevate our pursuit of more innovative prefabrication solutions.”

developed and have the resources to allow them to perform at their highest level in support of the project team.

Despite a busy schedule and significant responsibilities, Thompson still manages to find time to devote to the Industry Executive

According to Thompson, solving problems and building

Board. “I have been in industry for 40 years and was a Visiting

relationships are both quintessential to the job, and he is quick to

Industry Professor for five years,” Thompson said. “Hopefully I can

highlight the most important aspect of accomplishing both

use both experiences to offer good advice when needed. I believe

challenges: communication. But to ensure the growth and

students should be open to new experiences, open to working in

sharpening of his team’s skills, he often communicates what

different regions, and always looking for innovative ways to solve

needs to be accomplished, not necessarily how to accomplish it.

problems. I simply want to do everything I can to help Auburn’s

“People have to develop their own way of solving problems and

Building Science program be the best it can be.”

dealing with issues so that they own the success or failure of the 16 \\


FACULTY/STAFF UPDATES

// A NEW ROLE for Lindsey Motley CADC’s Lindsey Motley has taken on a new role as the Career Services Specialist for the McWhorter School of Building Science. Beginning her career at Auburn University as an Academic Advisor for the College of Architecture, Design and Construction, Lindsey says she enjoyed helping students navigate the sometimes stressful journey to graduation. “I really enjoyed the opportunity to get to know many of the students individually,” she says. Academic Advising in the CADC is somewhat unique in that it is required for all pre-professional students. This helps create the close-knit relationships that the CADC is known for. In her new position in the McWhorter School of Building Science, Lindsey acts primarily as the liaison between Building Science students/faculty and employers/industry partners. “Building and maintaining those relationships is crucial. The industry is booming, and there are currently more positions available than there are students to fill them. I’m excited to help our students look for the right opportunities for them and get set up for the future.” A native of Alpharetta, Georgia, Lindsey grew up with an interest in the construction world. “My dad is a residential home builder, so building has always been near and dear to my heart.” She graduated from Auburn University with a degree in Secondary English Education and moved back to Georgia to teach for several years. Eventually, she decided to return to Auburn with her nowhusband, Matthew. “Going from teaching to advising to career advising—there’s so much overlap,” she says. “I love our students, and I love our program. I know I’m a little biased, but I think we have one of the best on campus.”

Lindsey acts primarily as a liaison between Building Science students/faculty and employer/industry partners.”

// 17


18 \\


ALUMNI PROFILE

// ALLEN FAMILY LAYS FOUNDATION to a Construction Legacy

A study conducted by Facebook in

When Judson entered the construction

2013 found that 28% of married

industry after graduating from Auburn

college graduates met their spouses

University, there were not many women

on a college campus. Bill and Judson

in the business. “Entering that workforce

Allen are part of that quarter segment of

was a challenge for a 22-year-old woman

couples, having met on campus in their

who had never set foot on a construction

Construction Safety class. Both Building

site. I was able to work with wonderful

Construction

Judson

role models. I tell young people that it is

graduated in the summer of 1986. Happily

a great career with endless opportunities

married, they live in Nashville with their two

in different sectors of the field. I would

daughters, Julia and Leah. Their eldest, Julia,

recommend a summer internship or co-op

is now a senior in Building Science at Auburn.

experience before entering the workforce.”

Judson Allen, an Opp, Alabama native,

Allen worked briefly with Wainwright

changed majors from Pre-Pharmacy to

Engineering in their Montgomery office

Building Science during her sophomore

assisting

year

that

construction after graduation. She then

I really enjoyed the Building Science

worked for the City of Nashville as a

curriculum. Continuing in the program was

project manager for construction in the

one of the best decisions I have ever

engineering department of Metro Water

made,” she added.

Services.

at

majors,

Auburn.

Bill

“I

and

found

with

In

airport

this

design

role,

she

and

was

responsible for the construction of new Judson

credits

program

with

graduates

to

the

Building

successfully enter

the

Science preparing

facilities as well as maintenance and

Judson [Allen] credits the Building Science program with successfully preparing graduates to enter the construction industry.”

repair of existing properties.

construction

industry. “The curriculum itself teaches

A Nashville native, Bill Allen came to

concepts of design, materials, and methods,

Auburn as a student athlete on the swim

and the professors add the real-life aspect

team. Although he was originally a

by describing actual situations that students

student of Mechanical Engineering,

will encounter on construction projects.”

Allen transferred to Building Science

She underscores the dedication of the

after his freshman year. This was better

faculty who made “student accomplishment

aligned with his family’s business,

their main priority. Their desire to help us

Southern Sales Company.

succeed at every level and fully reach our potential in the classroom, in the industry, and in life was clearly evident. This positive energy generated excitement for learning and made us want to do our very best.”

// 19


[Building Science] does a great job of applying classroom learning to real-life situations.” JULIA ALLEN

Southern Sales Company (a division of

Julia Allen chose to major in Building

Julia completed two internships: one

Tencarva

a

Science because of her affinity for both

with Skanska USA in Nashville, where

manufacturer’s representative dealing with

architecture and business. “When my

she was a field intern on the Cordell Hull

Municipal Water and Wastewater Treatment

parents explained the versatility of

Project in downtown Nashville. The

and Pumping equipment. As Vice President

Building Science as a major and its

other was with Austin Commercial in

for Municipal Operations at the company,

potential career paths, I quickly became

Orlando and involved building a three-

Mr. Allen oversees 25 sales engineers who

interested,” she said. “I liked the idea of

story office structure for Universal

cover eleven states in the Southeast.

being able to look at a building and to

Studios employees. “These internships

see the different components within it,

helped me understand the sequence of

Bill also credits the Auburn Building Science

such as the structural steel, the roof, and

a

curriculum with providing practical content

the finishes. I also liked the social aspect

completion

that prepares students for real work. “It’s a

of the construction industry, and seeing

between owner, architect, and contractor

balance of civil engineering and business,

the finished product of your work.”

(OAC),” she recalls. Julia plans to

Machinery

Company)

is

and the faculty encourages collaboration

project

as and

they the

move

toward

relationships

work for a general contractor after

and what the real world is all about.” At the

Julia shares her mother’s appreciation of

graduation (either as a project engineer

company, he works closely with heavy civil

the Building Science program. “The

or in pre-construction).

contractors to install water and wastewater

school does a great job of applying

systems and with the engineers who

classroom learning to real-life situations

Leah, the youngest of the family, is a

design them. Auburn Building Science

that occur both on construction sites

senior at Harpeth Hall School. She is

trained

civil

and within the construction industry.

considering studying architecture and

construction—the sector most relevant to

him

to

fully

understand

The group projects facilitate collaborative

business and looking at Auburn as a

the family business. When asked what

learning,

possibility.

mindset or perspective was important for

experience with construction technology.

success in the construction industry, Mr.

A lot of the classroom assignments

“We loved the friendly atmosphere in

Allen replied that it required patience and a

directly correlate to work on jobsites,

Auburn and how the community truly

cooperative attitude. “There are a lot of

which I believe benefits the students in

embraced the students and supported

disciplines that come together to make a

the program. It’s also cool to have my

the university,” Mr. Allen says. “After I

project successful including engineers,

parents answer my questions about

graduated and moved away I began to

architects,

Thesis or other aspects of the program.”

truly appreciate what a wonderful place

subcontractors,

owners,

and

we

get

hands-on

suppliers and contractors.” The biggest

it was. There is a genuine sense of

challenge? “I understand that technology

family there that we have never found

drives the world today, but I cannot stress

anywhere else.”

how much face-to-face interaction can help you resolve problems.” 20 \\


I understand that technology drives the world today, but I cannot stress how much face-to-face interaction can help you resolve problems.� BILL ALLEN

// 21


PROGRAM UPDATES

// MULTIDISCIPLINARY TEAMWORK IN THE WORKPLACE An Accreditation Requirement ACCE

(American

Construction

Council

Education)

is

a

for non-

Leathem and Wetzel will use survey data

to

develop

learning

modules

governmental organization. Its mission

designed to teach students about the

is to be a leading global advocate of

multi-disciplinary

quality construction education, and to

profession. These modules will have

promote, support, and accredit quality

potential usefulness in the architecture

construction

programs.

curriculum as well as other building

Recently the organization made the

science degree programs. “We hope

decision to restructure their accreditation

this would be something that could be

model

to

adopted by other schools and possibly

outcomes-based in which programs

industry as a means of professional

must demonstrate student achievement

development,” said Leathem. “The

measured by a series of student

research, sponsored by a grant from the

learning outcomes.

Center for Construction Innovation and

from

education

prescriptive-based

aspect

of

the

Collaboration (CCIC), is planned to be Demonstration of the ability to work

completed this year.”

cooperatively on multidisciplinary teams is one requirement for accreditation.

ACCE conducts a review process to

With this challenging requirement in

determine if educational programs meet

mind, Building Science professors Tom

defined standards of quality. Once

Leathem and Eric Wetzel are conducting

achieved,

a survey of architecture and construction

periodically to ensure that the quality of the

schools across the country to get a

educational program is maintained.

consensus about how other programs aim to meet this objective.

22 \\

accreditation

is

renewed


RESEARCH

// PROFESSOR AZHAR’S PAPER AWARDED at an International Conference Organizers

of

the

applications of HMDs in the construction

Conference on Engineering, Project, and

construction

started

industry. Microsoft HoloLens is tested

Production Management (EPPM 2018)

adopting new technologies to help

as a potential visualization tool to

announced that Professor Salman Azhar of

improve quality and minimize time and

determine its usefulness and limitations

the McWhorter School of Building Science

costs

in comparison to traditional 2D sketches

and co-author Austin DaValle won the

Industries combining the use of virtual

Annual Best Paper award. The paper, “An

and physical data discovered that most

Investigation of Mixed Reality Technology

mistakes

for On-Site Construction Assembly,” was

between a user’s view of the real-world

Engineering, Project, and Production

selected out of 168 entries submitted from

and what they are comparing it to in 2D

Management

all over the world. Azhar made the keynote

sketches or a 3D model. The use of

platform for the discussion of innovative

presentation on September 26, 2018 at

Head Mounted Displays (HMDs), capable

research and practice and creative

EPPM, in Cape Town, South Africa.

of superimposing holographic images

cross-breeding of the multidisciplinary

into

being

fields of engineering and management.

Azhar is a J.E. Wilborn Endowed Professor

considered by several researchers and

Last year’s conference in South Africa

for Emerging Faculty and the Graduate

practitioners as a possible remedy.

was co-hosted by the Nelson Mandela

Program Chair at the McWhorter School of

“These advancements are leading us to

University

Building Science. DaValle graduated from

entirely new ways of thinking and

University of Technology, Free State

the

visualizing construction processes,” said

(CUT), South Africa.

Master

of

the

9 th

Building

International

Construction

program in 2017 and currently works at McShane

Construction

Company

According

to

the

associated

a

Azhar.

arise

pilot

has

with

due

real-world

“This

authors,

industry

to

space,

study

projects.

disconnect

is

or 3D models.” The

International

Conference

(EPPM)

(NMU)

and

provides

the

on a

Central

identifies

in

Chicago. Their paper was the outcome of research on investigating applications of mixed reality headsets in design and construction practice sponsored by a seed grant from the Center for Construction Innovation and Collaboration (CCIC).

This pilot study identifies applications of HMDs in the construction industry.” SALMAN AZHAR

// 23


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Quoin Fall 2019  

The Quoin is a magazine for Building Science published twice a year by the Auburn University College of Architecture, Design and Constructio...

Quoin Fall 2019  

The Quoin is a magazine for Building Science published twice a year by the Auburn University College of Architecture, Design and Constructio...

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