mcwhorter school of building science
// fall 2017
GORRIE CENTER RENOVATION
// RENOVATION BRINGS Cutting-Edge Technology
GORRIE CENTER RENOVATION Renovation Brings Cutting-Edge Technology
STUDY ABROAD Australia and New Zealand
MESSAGE FROM THE SCHOOL HEAD Richard Burt
ALUMNI PROFILE Jerry Gillman
TECHNOLOGY IN CONSTRUCTION Students explore the latest technology
GRAD UPDATES 2016/2017 Douglas Martin/ Trenton Huffines/ Erin Bradley
UNDERGRAD UPDATES Rachel Nemecek
INDUSTRY ADVISORY COMMITTEE HIGHLIGHT John White
FACULTY NEWS Tom Leathem
ALUMNI Geoff Golden
RESEARCH Research Improves Safety for Dredging Industry
EVENTS Golf Outing
PROJECT MANAGEMENT ELECTIVE
FALL 2017 CAREER EXPO
REGION 2 COMPETITIONS McWhorter School of Building Science Wins Big at ASC
Richard Burt, Head and McWhorter Endowed Chair
Latha Bhavnani, writer & editor
Colleen Bourdeau, CADC Communications and Marketing Director
Karen Rogers, Associate Dean for Graduate Studies
Marcelo Blanco, CADC Graphic Designer
and Research, and Associate Professor
Cassandra Calloway, Career Services Specialist III
Morgan Smothers, writer & editor
//MESSAGE FROM the school head
Welcome to the Fall 2017 edition of Quoin. As we end the fall semester, the McWhorter School of Building Science is in fine shape. For the fourth consecutive year, we have seen our undergraduate student enrollment increase. This Fall, we have 560 undergraduates in the program. This sustained increase in enrollment will allow us to graduate close to 120 students in 2018. Our industry recruiters are excited to hear this news and are showing up regularly at our career expos to hire our graduate students.
Similar to many professional programs at Auburn University, the
undergraduate Building Science program controls the number of students admitted into the final two years of the program due to space and resources. The Enrollment Management Plan that we have in place is based on a formulaâˆ’GPA which attributes greater value to BSCI classes, and only includes certain Auburn core classes. These courses teach the skills and knowledge (e.g. written and oral communication, mathematics) our students
need to be successful in the professional program and their chosen career.
we will implement a pilot program to increase enrollment. The impetus
To try to remedy this situation, beginning in the Summer of 2018,
Every Enrollment Management Plan is approved at the university level. For
behind this pilot program is the underlying opinion of the faculty of the
Summer and Fall semesters, 30 students are chosen in rank order based
McWhorter School that a number of qualified students (who meet the
upon the formulaâˆ’GPA calculation. In the Spring semester, 60 students are
minimum formulaâˆ’GPA of 2.60) currently denied admission. Current demand
admitted, which equates to 120 students entering the program every year.
in the construction industry indicates additional graduates will be embraced
This sustained growth in students entering the program as either freshmen
upon graduation. If additional students could complete the Building Science
or transfer students has resulted in increased demand for admission into
Professional Program, the industry would hire these students for full-time
the final two years of the professional program. Since the Fall of 2016,
demand for admission into the program has exceeded the number of
students we can admit. This has resulted in some students being denied
School will admit up to 52 students beginning in the Summer term of
admission into the professional program after taking Pre-Building Science
2018. The additional 22 students will be admitted into an extended intern-
classes for two years. As you can imagine, this tiered admissions process
ship program. These students will matriculate in the Summer of 2018,
causes consternation for both the students and their parents if students
take their second semester classes in the Fall of 2018, intern during
are not admitted after the sophomore year. We are working hard to make
the Spring of 2019, take their third semester classes in the Summer of
extra efforts to inform students (and parents when the chance arises)
2019, intern during the Fall of 2019, and complete their final semester of
of the increased competitiveness of the Building Science Professional
classes and graduate during the Spring semester of 2020. We see this as
Program. I know many of you act as ambassadors and recruiters for our
a win-win situation for everyone: more students get to study for the degree
program. As you chat with prospective students and point them toward
of their choice, and our industry recruiters get the opportunity to have
Building Science, make sure you encourage them to clearly understand
more BSCI students interning in the Spring and Fall, and ultimately more
the admissions process to the Professional Program and the importance
graduates to hire!
To facilitate the increased demand for the program, the McWhorter
of having solid grades in all classes.
Richard Burt War Eagle!
QUOIN MAGAZINE 2017
//NEW TECHNOLOGY HELPS BUILDINGS withstand hurricane force winds Devastation caused to the built environment by hurricanes, tornados
in the area were severely damaged or leveled all together, but one home
and severe storms has long inspired manufacturers in the construction
stood undamaged. It was manufactured and engineered by Innova Eco
industry to improve and develop technology and building materials that
Building System for 150 mph winds using the company’s Dade County 180
can withstand high winds. One such innovation is related to the Structural
mph NOAA coastal impact-approved MGO SIP. Students and faculty at the
Insulated Panels (SIP) and sandwich panel technology. Traditionally,
University of Florida's Wind Hazard Damage Assessment Team issued a
these sandwich panels, which can withstand winds of up to 150 mph,
study of the event and highlighted the one home that withstood the heavy
have consisted of structural layers of plywood around a core of insulation.
winds. "Our company provides support for single and multi-family dwellings,
Although plywood SIP are still in use, there is an increase in the use of boards
for commercial and special use, for the oil and mining industry, and for
where plywood is replaced with sheet metal, cement, magnesium oxide board
educational facilities,” said Gillman. “With all building envelope compo-
(MGO) or oriented strand board (OSB).
nents engineered and built in our facility to exacting specifications, the
Innova fast-track construction system can accelerate building schedules
Jerry Gillman, an auburn building science alumnus, started
manufacturing SIP panels in Florida in 2012. After graduating in 1983, Gillman
while lowering labor hours.”
worked for Centex Rooney in Ft. Lauderdale as an estimator. A year later,
at James A. Cummings Inc., as project manager for the construction of two
commercial construction projects, I had many ideas for improv-
concourses at the Ft. Lauderdale Airport, he learned about SIP technology.
ing SIP technology, manufacturing and construction applications
Noting especially its performance during hurricane Charlie in Florida, in
to a wider scope of projects,” he said. GIllman applied for patents
"As my experience in construction was in high rise and
2003, Gillman became enthusiastic about the technology and later, in 2010,
to protect the innovations for additives to improve MGO board
he purchased a company that manufactured cement fiber SIPs. In 2012, he
performance, for splicing stressed skins, an impact-rated SIP and
inaugurated Innova Eco Building Systems in Miami.
other manufacturing methods.
The company manufactures the Innova Panel, a new gener-
"The state of Florida received an $8 million grant from
ation of environmentally friendly SIPs used for producing high
the federal government to offer training for Advanced Topics
performance buildings that are energy efficient, safe, and easily built.
in Manufactured Construction,” said Gillman. “One module in
“Innova was the first mass production SIP facility in the U.S., and first
the course offered at the University of Florida includes informa-
to offer magnesium cement board SIP as its main product line,” said
tion on structural insulated panels, and even more exciting is that
Gillman. “Our panels have been tested to withstand both 180 to 200
module 3.2.5 is a case study of Innova Eco Building MGO SIP. We
mph, and 230 mph wind loads without failure.”
are excited that the university is offering our technology to students
Innova’s first big test came when a home built using its SIP
technology was in the direct path of a tornado with wind speed of 200 mph that caused severe damage in Charleston County, SC. Most of the homes
who will graduate with the knowledge to build with our energy efficient building system,” added Gillman.
Years ago, it could take weeks before a telephone connection was installed
TECHNOLOGY IN CONSTRUCTION
//STUDENTS EXPLORE the latest technology
professors participated in the event. Many of the demonstrations were
in the trailer on a construction site. A construction manager needed only a
hands-on, and included Virtual Augmented Reality stations, a laser
telephone to call sub-contractors and workers to come to a work site, look
survey, RFID tagging, drone demonstrations, robotic survey, the
at the blue prints and get started on the job. Twenty-five years later the
Center for Construction Innovation and Collaboration booth, and
situation on the construction site is completely different. One of the biggest
a booth for Global Study Abroad.
developments in project management has been advances in technology
that allow construction industry professionals to work with increasingly more
tion industry was “an excellent opportunity for hands-on perspective and
Preparing the class before the Expo on technology in the construc-
sophisticated tools. Today, they must have the skills to learn and employ
to showcase how AU was using innovations and helping the industry,”
constantly evolving technology.
In order to help students embrace technological change and inno-
vation, Senior Lecturer Les Carter organized a Technology Expo to introduce students to tools and devices used in the industry. “The rationale was to give the students a first-hand look at construction technology, and what the
The rationale was to give the students a first-hand look at construction technology, and what the McWhorter
McWhorter School of Building Science is doing on that front,” said Carter.
School of Building Science is doing on that front.
LES CA RTER
According to Carter, the Expo generated considerable interest.
All 90 students from the Introduction to Construction class and eight
QUOIN MAGAZINE 2017
GORRIE CENTER RENOVATION
//RENOVATION BRINGS cutting-edge technology Spaces in the Miller Gorrie Center, home of the McWhorter School of Building Science, are getting upgrades that will completely change the way students learn about the construction industry. Thanks to the generous support of our donors, students will have access to a Virtual Design Construction Laboratory, three competition team rooms, and a renovated Engaged Active Student Learning classroom. The additional resources and learning experiences provided by these renovations will place the McWhorter School of Building Science at the forefront of building construction education.
VDC LAB The Building Science “Demonstration Lab” is being repurposed into a Virtual Design Construction (VDC) Laboratory. “The VDC lab is our next step in creating an environment that immerses students in evolving technology that impacts and transforms the construction industry,” says Anoop Sattineni, Bob Aderholt Endowed Professor in Building Science. “This technology allows for students to gain experience working with virtual reality and building information modelling. The large digital space allows us to help students visualize construction on a one-to-one scale.” The lab, prominently visible from the main entry and lobby of the Miller Gorrie Center, will signal the rigor and relevance of our curriculum to prospective students, faculty, and industry partners.
The innovation of this project is common ground between
our program and the industry, and we have two lead donors to thank for the work being done on the VDC lab. M. Miller and Francis Gorrie have donated to ensure that our students receive the best educational experience possible and to honor the men and women of Brasfield and Gorrie. Holder Construction, a leader in construction technology, has recruited CADC students for the past 30 years and given a lead gift to this project as well.
“I see our participation more as giving back than I do simply giving,”
says Drew Yantis, Senior Vice President of Holder and 1987 Building Science Virtual Design Construction (VDC) Laboratory New Video Wall
alumnus. “When I think about this exciting new space and what it’s going to do, I think of it as a space that will support visualization, demonstration, and collaboration – skills that help keep our students on the leading edge of innovation. Our priority is the students, but we are also invested in the faculty, the school and the college, so the vision for the VDC Lab and the impact it will have is important to us all.”
gorrie gorrie center center renovation renovation
QUOIN MAGAZINE 2017
COMPETITION TEAM ROOMS Recent upgrades will also include three competition team rooms.
ence industry advisors during their preparations. The competition team
“Each year, approximately 100 building science students commit themselves
program is a vital part of the education our students receive. It trains
above and beyond their required class and lab hours to participate in
students for highly functional teamwork within the construction industry,
the student competition team program,” explains Building Construction
exposes them to industry, gives industry an opportunity to assist in the
Program Chair Mark Taylor. “They compete regionally, nationally, and
development of winning teams, and the students’ participation raises the
internationally in competitions concentrating on commercial construc-
visibility of Auburn’s construction program and boosts our reputation. “We
tion, heavy civil, roofing, electrical and mechanical, design build, and
are thrilled to be giving these students and this program the recognition
health care construction, to name a few." Many other schools have a class
and the essential workspace they deserve,” says Austin Walker of the
dedicated to the competitions, so their students have set hours and locations
Atlanta Building Science Alumni Committee, which funded one of the
each day to meet and discuss their plans. Our competition teams have
team rooms. The other two rooms were made possible by EMJ Corporation
always prepared on their own, making time between classes and working
and Caddell Construction.
when they can. “The McWhorter School, along with the efforts of Evan
Thomas and the CADC Development Office, is fortunate to be able to support
tition team room renovations at its fall board meeting. Construction is
the student competition teams,” says Taylor. “This academic year (2017-
expected to begin at the end of the fall semester and be completed in
2018), we will have fifteen teams competing at seven different venues.”
time for the 2018−19 academic year.
The new competition team rooms will provide a productive
workspace and give our competition teams a place to store their materials and technology, work together to make plans, and even video confer-
The Auburn Board of Trustees approved the VDC and the compe-
gorrie center renovation
EASL CLASSROOM There is nothing ordinary about classes in building construction, and we believe the classrooms should meet these standards as well. The McWhorter
This type of classroom is often called a “flipped
School of Building Science is creating an Engaged Active Student Learning
classroom” due to the non-traditional or inverse
(EASL) classroom to be available for use beginning Fall 2018. This type of
teaching method applied in the space. Instead of
classroom is often called a “flipped classroom” due to the non-traditional or inverse teaching method applied in the space. Instead of the usual lecture style of most classes, the EASL classroom is built around the idea of having students centerstage and engaging with those around them. The
the usual lecture style of most classes, the EASL classroom is built around the idea of having students centerstage and engaging with those around them.
EASL classroom will feature eight “pods” of furniture to encourage group activities and corresponding glass boards on all walls to allow for more effective collaboration. Modern technology will allow students to connect to projecting devices using their own laptops, tablets, and other mobile
MCWHORTER RENOVATION SPONSORS
devices, to easily share their work with other students across the room.
ENGAGED ACTIVE STUDENT LEARNING ROOM
The teaching station will contain a computer, laptop connection, and a
Bailey-Harris Construction Evergreen Construction Robins & Morton
document camera. Touchscreen technology will allow users to choose what device will be shared with monitors in the room.
Up to eight corporate partners sponsors will have the opportunity
to brand one glass board and pod section of the EASL classroom each with their corporate signage. Currently, three partners have committed: Bailey-Harris, Evergreen Construction, and Robins & Morton. Companies interested in partnering with us to give our students the cutting-edge resources they deserve should contact Dara Hosey at email@example.com. These new upgrades will provide Auburn Building Science students with a healthy advantage. They will be top candidates in their fields, simply because of their preparation in state-of-the-industry technology. The renovations are sure to supplement our students’ learning experiences and, in turn,
STUDENT COMPETITION TEAM ROOMS
Atlanta Building Science Alumni Caddell Construction EMJ Corporation VIRTUAL DESIGN AND CONSTRUCTION LAB
Holder Construction M. Miller and Francis Gorrie
Auburn’s reputation for excellence.
Companies interested in partnering with us to provide state of the art technologies should contact Dara Hosey at firstname.lastname@example.org
//2017 OUTSTANDING BUILDING SCIENCE
On October 19, 2017, the College of Architecture, Design and Construction
held its annual Awards Banquet. The banquet honors exceptional students and faculty members for their hard work and celebrates the success of another year. Students are nominated by faculty and chosen for the awards based on their displays of excellence within their program and their success both inside and outside the classroom.
OUTSTANDING Graduate Student Award
OUTSTANDING BUILDING CONSTRUCTION Graduate Student
Tyler Deal has been a quiet, respected leader in his time at Auburn, and his instructors knew they could trust him with whatever task was at hand. His concrete competition team won first place at the ASC Region 2 competitions
Trent Huffines obtained his undergraduate degree in Industrial Design from
last October. In his final year, Tyler participated in the Study Abroad program
North Carolina State University before coming to Auburn to pursue the Master
to Australia and New Zealand and was a student worker for the McWhorter
of Building Construction (MBC) degree. His interest in service learning was
survey camp. One building science faculty member remarked that “Tyler was
expressed through his capstone, where he travelled to Ecuador and Panama to
consistently engaged in a wide range of activities and services to the School
research the Auburn United Methodist Church’s current home-building projects.
and the industry, and he did so with great preparation, conscientiousness and
His capstone chair, Scott Kramer, said, “Trent was the type of graduate student
a very positive attitude.”
that a faculty member dreams of – thoughtful, motivated and hard-working. He
Tyler is now working for JE Dunn in Atlanta as a Project Engineer and
cares about others before himself.” Trent’s MBC Capstone research, involving
is on track to become a Superintendent. His display of leadership and excellence
a sustainable house design for the indigenous people of Panama, will have a
made him the prime candidate for the Outstanding Undergraduate Award.
lasting impact on the lives of others for years to come. “It was my pleasure to work with him,” Kramer added. “He is an excellent example of what the MBC graduate program strives to achieve.”
Trent recently joined DPR Construction in Greenville, South Carolina.
He is assisting with an expansion project for BMW at their manufacturing plant in Greer. Upon getting married in December, Trent and his wife will be renovating
EXECUTIVE CERTIFICATES in Building Construction Erin Bradley holds an undergraduate degree from Marshall University and a Master’s degree from Eastern Michigan University. For the last eight years, she has worked with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers as a Contracting Officer for the New England District. Erin was part of the distance education program for Certificates in Construction Management. She completed her distance work with a perfect GPA, and her professors describe her work ethic as “a rising tide that made all her classmates better.” Erin lives out of state and was unable to join the CADC for the Awards Banquet. Her award was accepted by Dr. Richard Burt, Head of the McWhorter School of Building Science.
their 1970s home together.
THANKS TO THE DONORS WHO HELPED MAKE THIS EVENT POSSIBLE:
Gold Hoar Construction JE Dunn Robbins and Morton
Silver ASD | Sky Nequette Architecture & Design
Bronze Brasfield & Gorrie BrownStudio Architecture
participates in the Kiewit leadership program
//UNDERGRAD STUDENT NEMECEK
When Rachel Nemecek applied to participate in the Kiewit Women’s Construction Leadership Seminar, she received an invitation to participate in the new 12-month Kiewit Women’s Leadership Pilot Program. The application process for the program included a 3-minute video where she detailed how she can be an ambassador for women in the construction and engineering industries.
“The program is called 12 First Fridays,” said Nemecek. “It is
structured to engage Kiewit’s female leaders with other young women interested in careers in the construction and engineering industries. Every leader and participant from different parts of the country come together every first Friday of the month for a 45-minute video conference to discuss a wide variety of topics.”
The program started in October 2016 and ran through September 2017.
It incorporates seminars that range from conflict management to handling failure, prioritizing time management, and gaining confidence in the field. All of the seminars are recorded and available to the students in the event that they miss a session.
Nemecek had not always considered a career in building science.
“I always considered construction a hobby when I helped my father build his 520 square-foot houseboat,” she explains. “I never would have thought that I would make a career in construction until I had a conversation with a young woman in building science. When she explained the program to me, I decided that I would attend Auburn University and pursue a degree in building science.”
“Rachel is a vital member of our Auburn Community,” said Ben Farrow,
Associate Dean for Academic Affairs and International Programs. “While many students connect on one level or another, Rachel has found a way to connect on multiple levels. Over the next two years as an ambassador of the College, she will regularly meet with students interested in construction management. It is essential that we have engaged, female leaders in the ambassador role she serves. An active member of the Auburn University band, she volunteers her
The sky is the limit!
time as a color guard instructor at a local high school. These roles in the larger
There are so many different possibilities!
community further help us convey our brand and the opportunities available for careers in construction management.”
When asked about her plans for the future, Nemecek responded,
“The sky is the limit! There are so many different possibilities! This summer I am interning for a construction company, and I am excited to see what possibilities
This summer I am interning for construction company, and I am excited to see what possibilities that will bring. R ACHEL NEMECEK
that will bring.”
Nemecek, is the first person in her family to attend Auburn University.
“All of my family lives in Louisiana, and attend one of our rival colleges. But that makes it a fun time when we all get together during the holiday season.”
QUOIN MAGAZINE 2017
INDUSTRY ADVISORY COMMITTEE HIGHLIGHTS
//IAC HIGHLIGHT John White
I am proud of how the program has evolved. Advances in technology have produced more technologically sophisticated students with the ability to quickly contribute in the industry in many ways. In addition, the opportunity to study abroad produces students who have had exposure to other cultures. Our industry benefits from this tremendously. JOHN WHITE
McWhorter School of Building Science Industry Advisory Committee (IAC) member John White is a 1975 Building Science graduate and Senior Vice
Speaking of the current undergraduate program, White adds,
“I am proud of how the program has evolved. Advances in technology
President at Skanska USA.
have produced more technologically sophisticated students with the
White came to Auburn after attending Northeast Alabama
ability to quickly contribute in the industry in many ways. In addition, the
Community College, where he received an Associate in Science degree
opportunity to study abroad produces students who have had exposure
in Pre-Engineering. “After a few weeks in civil engineering classes, I met
to other cultures. Our industry benefits from this tremendously.”
another student who was a Building Science major and learned of the
program from him. I made an appointment to meet Professor Paul Brandt
him an ideal sounding board for the program. He has served in many
to discuss transferring into the program. After spending some time with
leadership roles at Skanska USA, including managing director of the
him, I knew that Building Science was where I wanted to be,” said White.
Skanska’s Aviation Center at its Houston and Las Vegas offices, and
White’s extensive experience in the construction industry makes
“I entered the program when technology was advancing, and
his most recent position with Skanska’s Strategic Projects Group. His
Building Science was evolving. I particularly enjoyed the structures classes,
experience includes multiple projects at Hartsfield-Jackson’s International
history of building, legal aspects of engineering and construction, and
Airport as well as aviation projects at LaGuardia, Boston’s Logan and
business classes. Building Science has always excelled in having quality
Tampa International Airport.
people in teaching positions, one of the primary reasons our program has
always been one of the elite construction programs in the country.”
since June 1994. “Each year I enjoy the opportunity to re-connect with
Auburn. IAC plays an important role in enabling Auburn University to
White spent much of his time in co-op work assignments, studying
White has been on the Industry Advisory Committee (IAC)
and attending classes and sporting events, and socializing with friends.
interface with the construction industry. I have learned much about the
“I worked for a general contractor, Algernon Blair, with assignments in
challenges the program faces and I get the opportunity to provide input as
Greensboro in North Carolina, and Montgomery. The experience was
a representative of the construction industry and guide outcomes in the
invaluable. It gave me the opportunity to work with some great construc-
program. It provides a conduit between higher education and practical
tion professionals. Auburn taught me basic learning skills and helped me
applications in the construction industry, giving both the opportunity to
develop my interpersonal skills, and provided me a network within the
continually learn from each other.”
Auburn family that has been very important in my success, both as a
construction professional and as an Auburn man.”
Auburn family are very important to me and my family. My wife Dale, my
White is an Auburn man through and through: “My ties to the
daughter and son-in law, my sister, my sisters-in-law, my brother-in-law, and several nieces and nephews are Auburn graduates. So Auburn is a strong part of who I am. We all enjoy being a part of the Auburn family.”
//MEET ASSISTANT PROFESSOR Tom Leathem
Tom Leathem has recently joined the faculty of the McWhorter School of Building Science. After earning his bachelor’s degree in construction management from Western Illinois University, he spent eight years working in the Chicago area construction industry, and operated his own residential construction company for three years. He is a Certified Professional Constructor (CPC) from the American Institute of Constructors.
During the 11 years he spent in the construction industry, Leathem
was involved in employee training and mentoring college interns. As a result of this experience, Leathem began to think that he might enjoy the teaching side of the construction profession. He returned to school to earn a master’s degree in integrated design and construction at Auburn University where he also taught as an adjunct faculty. He then accepted a teaching position at Mississippi State University where he taught “studio-format” undergraduate classes that incorporated construction documents, pre-construction services, BIM, safety, estimating, scheduling, materials and methods, interdisciplinary collaboration and the construction profession, electricity and high performance construction. He obtained his Ph.D. in October 2017 after defending his dissertation, which addressed the issue of program assessment in Construction.
At Auburn, Leathem currently teaches BSCI 2200-Construction
Documents. In the spring, he will also teach BSCI 7040-Integrated Building Processes II, a graduate-level course.
His principal research interest was in construction education,
particularly assessment. His main focus was to investigate assessment instruments employed in construction education, student learning outcomes, construction accreditation, and curriculum development. He is also interested in interdisciplinary collaboration in the built environment related to strategies employed by construction industries to improve collaboration on projects. He hopes to incorporate these approaches into the classroom to improve students’ understanding of the dynamics and necessity of collaborative teams.
Leathem serves as the Regional Director for the Associated Schools
of Construction (ASC) Region 2, where he will oversee ASC activities in the region. Typical regional activities include a mid-year regional meeting, regional
I am delighted to join the BSCI program that has such a rich history of excellence, and being a part of a team of faculty that
student competitions, and faculty paper presentations. The Regional Director
is supportive, energetic, and great to work
also serves on the Board of Directors of the national ASC.
with. I look forward to working with
“I am delighted to join the BSCI program that has such a rich
history of excellence, and being a part of a team of faculty that is supportive, energetic, and great to work with. I look forward to working with graduate students, industry, and others in the college and university,” says Leathem.
graduate students, industry, and others in the college and university. TOM LE ATHEM
QUOIN MAGAZINE 2017
//STUDY ABROAD Australia and New Zealand The wide variety of study abroad programs offered by the McWhorter School of
Building Science allows students to explore new places and have on-of-a-kind
in Australia, and Auckland and Queenstown in New Zealand. Faculty at
The itinerary included visits to Sydney, Melbourne, and Brisbane
adventures. These experiences provide students with exposure to a range of
the University of Technology in Sydney, the Royal Melbourne Institute of
global cultures, as well as to broaden their understanding and provide new
Technology, and the New South Wales University served as the local contacts
perspectives on the world.
who arranged the group’s visits to construction sites in those cities.
Twelve Auburn Building Science seniors completed their under-
“We visited seven construction sites. This generally gives the
graduate careers with a visit to Australia and New Zealand. “Study trips
students an awareness as to how the construction industry is organized in
abroad are always about how to get students exposed to whatever local
Australia. They got a first-hand experience to the differences in how construc-
country we are in, the culture and its people,” said Anoop Sattineni, Bob
tion is handled in the U.S. and Australia. Compared to the United States,
Aderholt Endowed Professor in the McWhorter School of Building Science.
construction is a lot more expensive in Australia, primarily due to a lack of
“This trip (7 and a half weeks long) was the third such excursion to Australia. The previous ones were in 2012 and 2014.”
available labor. Because most of it is unionized, labor is very expensive in Australia. Students understood that dealing with unions is something to be
According to Sattineni, seniors go on the trip during their last
considered by a construction manager,” Sattineni added.
thesis semester. “Twelve of the twenty-seven eligible seniors went on the trip.
The Study Abroad program usually lines up with their last semester. They
country, rich in natural resources, had many activities to offer the group. The
The expedition to New Zealand included several cultural visits. The
are working on their thesis alongside their study-abroad electives. We had
group spent eight days exploring Auckland and Queenstown, which included
several professors, Richard Burt, Paul Holley, and Dennis Wilson (a retired
a visit to the Lake area, and Mount Cook, the biggest mountain in the country.
faculty member from kinesiology) travelling with them. The group stayed in
The students toured a museum for a brief introduction to Maori culture,
places where they had access to a room or space where they could hold
their history and their traditions which included the famous Haka ritual, a
classes and meetings.”
technique the tribes-people used to intimidate foes. Bungee jumping, sky
diving, and a visit to the movie set of Lord of the Rings: Hobbiton, were the
“For the thesis, students pretend to bid on a project,” said Sattineni.
“After winning the bid, they execute the project, and close it out.”
concluding activities on the trip. The seniors returned to Auburn with four weeks left in the semester to complete their thesis in time for graduation.
QUOIN MAGAZINE 2017
We visited seven construction sites. This generally gives. the students an awareness as to how the construction. industry is organized in Australia. They got a. first-hand experience to the differences in how. construction is handled in the U.S. and Australia. A N O OP SAT TINENI
For additional insights, student blogs from the Australiaâ€“ New Zealand program can be found at http://www.aubsci.org/2017 Travelers. Students participating include Joshua Atkinson, Rober t Barnes, Jack Bjork, Nicholas Chaplow, Tyler Deal, Cannon Jarrell, Mitchell Long, Troy Martin, Charles May, Grant Quist, Charles Simpson and Roger Tiller y.
building people and revolutionizing the industry
Albert Einstein said “Try not to become a man of success. Rather, become a man of value.” Geoff Golden has taken this advice to heart, and it has been his guiding principle ever since he started his career in the construction industry.
Golden’s interest in construction started while he was in high school,
when an architect who was a family friend taught him to build decks. “His son and I built decks for several summers. My dad attended Auburn and I was an Auburn Football fan, so the early building experience made the Building Science program at Auburn University seem like a natural fit.” At Auburn, he was a member of the Phi Delta Theta fraternity. He worked for two quarters with Brasfield & Gorrie General Contractors as part of the Co-Op program. His career took off when he graduated from Auburn University with a bachelor’s degree in building science in 1988.
After graduation, he joined Birmingham-based B. L. Harbert
International, LLC in its domestic commercial operations. The company was in the early stages of forming a commercial building group, and during this time, grew to be a major regional commercial contractor.
“Starting my career with an entrepreneurial company was extremely
exciting and fulfilling for me. I was exposed to the hard-bid market as well as the negotiated markets all over the southeast,” Golden said. As a founding employee of B. L. Harbert, he was promoted to the company’s Executive Committee while performing the role of Senior Project Manager.
This early experience in a high-growth atmosphere accelerated the
development of his technical expertise and management skills. He founded Golden Construction LLC in 1997, and under his stewardship the company has grown to be an award-winning firm that has been instrumental in the redevelopment of downtown Birmingham.
In 2008 and 2009, Golden & Associates was recognized by the
Associated Builders and Contractors of Alabama as the General Contractor of the Year. The company has won numerous Excellence in Construction Awards, and its employees are regularly recognized for their achievements in the industry.
Starting my career with an entrepreneurial company was extremely exciting and fulfilling for me. I was exposed to the hard-bid market as well as the negotiated markets all over the southeast. G EOFF G OLD EN
//Q & A WITH Geoff Golden
WHAT IS THE PHILOSOPHY THAT GUIDES YOUR PROFESSIONAL LIFE? “Lately, a quote by Lee Thayer, ‘To achieve a certain destiny, you have to align
WHAT ARE THE BIGGEST TRENDS IN BUILDING TODAY? “Design, Manufacture, Construct (DMC) is the biggest trend in the industry.
the conditions that achieve that destiny’ seems to be driving my actions.
I see that lean, integrated project delivery or pre-fabrication (even more about
This thought fueled our recent merger with Appleseed. In 2016, Golden
a growing use and application of technology) as stepping stones to a DMC
Construction merged with Appleseed Workshop, a local Design Build firm
process. DMC is a return to a master builder philosophy. Pre-fabrication of
headed by Mike Gibson (a 2006 Graduate of the AU architecture program).
building components can be utilized across a building program in a manner
This merger creates a fully integrated construction and architecture firm.
that allows for significant improvements in quality, speed and cost.”
While buildings are our products, we exist to enrich lives and leave marks on communities by building people, revolutionizing the industry. Our firm does this through an open source methodology of Design, Manufacture, Construct (DMC). We start with the intelligent design that is continually learning how to utilize manufactured and pre-manufactured components in an integrated and highly collaborative construction system.”
HOW DO YOU PERCEIVE YOUR RESPONSIBILITIES IN THE CONSTRUCTION INDUSTRY? “My responsibilities evolved from building projects to developing people that build projects, and establishing and maintaining a culture where people can thrive. Providing an environment that enriches lives, and seeing the effect our people have on the industry and the potential we are in front of, energizes me.”
QUOIN MAGAZINE 2017
image: pixalbay paulbr75
//IMPROVING SAFETY for the dredging industry Dredging is a technique used to keep waterways navigable for large vessels,
utilizing RFID technology to track persons on a dredge is even more so. As
and to maintain safe and efficient navigation channels. Dredging can involve
this research continues, there is a strong possibility that the technology
complicated and often dangerous work, and workplace-related accidents
will help improve the safety of all crew members on board a dredge. A
caused by fatigue or lack of visibility include personal injury due to tripping
grant from the Center for Construction Innovation and Collaboration (CCIC)
and falling. Professor Alan Bugg, a retiree from the U.S. Army Corps of
helped us significantly.”
Engineers (USACE), is interested in dredging safety. “USACE manages a
major portion of the dredging conducted on the nation’s navigable waterways,
identify and track tags attached to objects. The tags contain electronically
and safety is an area in need of improvement,” said Bugg.
stored information. An active tag has an on-board battery and periodi-
According to the Dredging Contractors of America, the dredging
cally transmits an ID signal. Passive tags may or may not incorporate a
industry keeps our nation’s trading gateways open for business in every
small battery and collect energy from a nearby RFID reader’s interrogating
port along the U.S. coastline. Together, these ports which handle 95% of
radio waves. An RFID reader and RFID tag communicate with one another
America’s foreign trade, are responsible for generating nearly $4.6 trillion
to collect information.
in economic activity, and generate 23 million jobs.
RFID technology uses electromagnetic fields to automatically
Bugg and Gilbert traveled to the Savannah Harbor dredging project
A high priority on dredging projects is to ensure the safety of all
to test the effectiveness of using passive RFID tags to provide individual
personnel. Standard personal protective equipment (PPE) is provided for
personnel safety on a dredge. “Gilbert played a major role in designing the
all crew members, and major companies have begun to implement safety
testing protocol and conducting the experiments,” added Bugg. Passive tags
programs tailored to reduce injury rates. Because of widespread industry
were placed on four locations. The researchers performed preliminary testing
interest in adopting new technologies, Bugg and his graduate assistant, Claire
to determine which type of RFID tag and reader was the most effective. The
Gilbert, have carried out research to explore the use of RFID (radio-frequency
experiment, which was conducted aboard a trailing suction hopper dredger,
identification) technology to improve workplace safety in the dredging industry.
required participants to wear tags while they were on board the dredge and
near the testing locations.
“Claire Gilbert was interested in doing her Capstone research in an
area related to improving safety in the daily operations on a construction site
using technology, and RFID research in the dredging industry seemed like
help develop more specific safety training in the future based on real jobsite
a natural fit” said Bugg. “Research in this industry is limited, and research
“The data and information gathered was analyzed and organized to
incidences. In order to consistently use RFID technology all over the dredge, each dredge would need a custom outfitting of readers and wireless coverage. Results of our research findings were presented at several conferences in the
The data and information gathered. was analyzed and organized to help.
country. We hope our approach will help streamline the onboard check-in
develop more specif ic safety.
process and create positive control of all personnel onboard at any given
training in the future based on.
time,” added Bugg.
“Professor Bugg’s research is a great example of applied inves-
tigation in construction education,” said Professor Paul Holley, Director of
real jobsite incidences. A L A N BUGG .
CCIC. “This project was one of seven supported by the CCIC in its 2016-2017 grant program; we look forward to seeing the results of each of them later this year. This project was a unique subject for MBC graduate student Claire Gilbert and her scholarly Capstone, as well as an opportunity for her to work with industry practitioners and potential end users.”
According to Bugg, implementing safety measures on dredging sites
is an ongoing necessity. Constant vigilance will result in less downtime, fewer accidents, healthier employees, improved performance and the delivery of higher quality projects. “By collaborating with Great Lakes Dredging Company, this study has the potential to open the door to better safety practices in the dredging industry,” Bugg said. If RFID tags do improve the safety of the dredging boat and the personnel on board, this innovative method of utilizing technology has the potential to be applied to other industries and workplaces, including commercial fishing and other marine industries, oil rigs, and many different types of construction and demolition sites.
Gilbert was interested in doing her Capstone research in an area related to improving safety in the daily operations on a construction site using technology, and RFID research in the dredging industry seemed like a natural fit. A L A N BUGG
QUOIN MAGAZINE 2017
//GOLF outing The IOTA Chapter of Sigma Lambda Chi (SLC) held its annual golf outing
on October 3, 2017, at the Auburn University Club to support the Building Science Program. The proceeds from the event provides opportunities to award scholarships, personal protection equipment for students and funds SLX activities throughout the year.
The event facilitates a lifelong network of contacts. â€œWe are proud to host
this annual event. It fosters a strong sense of community, and is an excellent way to bring visibility to companies, great time to meet students, connect with faculty and reconnect with fellow alums and industry leaders,â€? said Keith Rahn, assistant professor and SLX advisor. Joey Kauffman served as the chair of The 2017 Sigma Lambda Chi Golf Committee, supported by committee members Eric Brennan, McKelvy Douthit, Sam Freese, Trey Lowrey, Doug Martin, Zach Martin, Ty Mattox and Nick Russell.
According to Rahn, the 2017 event was another outstanding success.
A total of 132 players including alumni from 1978 to 2017, current Pre BSCI, BSCI students, faculty and company representatives participated in the event.
Thirty-six companies sponsored the event AECOM HUNT
AMERICAN HOME PLACE
J.E. DUNN CONSTRUCTION
BL HARBERT INTERNATIONAL
JUNEAU CONSTRUCTION COMPANY
BRASFIELD & GORRIE
BUILDERS FIRST SOURCE
MCCARTHY BUILDING COMPANIES
MECHANICAL CONTRACTORS OF GEORGIA
MILL CREEK RESIDENTIAL TRUST
CARROLL DANIEL CONSTRUCTION
NEW SOUTH CONSTRUCTION
CLEVELAND GROUP, INC.
PLAYER AND COMPANY
RC CONSTRUCTION CO., INC.
DON ALLEN DEVELOPMENT
ROBINS & MORTON
THE CLEMENT GROUP
THE WHITING-TURNER CONTRACTING COMPANY
IOTA is the M cWhorter School of Building Science chapter of the International Honor Society for Construction students.
QUOIN MAGAZINE 2017
PROJECT MANAGEMENT ELECTIVE
//TINY HOUSE CONSTRUCTION COURSE
utilizes tech and experiential learning
Following the success of this summer’s camp for high school students,
Students will use PlanGrid PM software to track the progress
the McWhorter School of Building Science is offering a new elective course
using photographs, safety reports, work reports, red line drawings, RFIs,
on Tiny Home design and construction. The summer camp for building a
schedules, and estimates. According to Simons, the class includes “tiny
Tiny House on Wheels, was organized by Mike Hosey, McWhorter School
home” lectures and project meetings led by the students. “Students will be
of Building Science Field Lab Manager and professor.
organized into four groups, each responsible for a portion of the project,”
The class is being offered as a project management elective and
is taught by April Simons, an assistant professor in the Building Science
Twenty-nine students were able to register for the class this fall.
program. Although there are no official prerequisites for the class, students
According to Simons, because of scheduling conflicts, the fall class was
are required to have safety training. Professor Hosey provided the blueprints
offered only to BSCI students. The spring class, however, will be open to
he created for the summer project to build a tiny house this semester.
students from Architecture and other disciplines across campus. The fall
When Simons was teaching the structures courses (which have
class will build the exterior and includes some design components. When
a field lab component) she realized that the students would gain a lot from
the elective is offered in spring, there will be more emphasis on design,
the hands-on learning exercises. “I thought a new class would give them
interior rooms, and mechanical, electrical and plumbing systems. The
a practical approach where they would be required to read the plans and
completed Tiny House on Wheels will measure 8’ wide ×18’ long (interior),
make adjustments to a real structure.”
and have a 3’ back porch.
Although there is currently no set definition as to what constitutes
as a tiny house, any structure that is as small as 400 square feet or less
According to Simons, working on the house gets the students out
of the traditional classroom. “The students get the satisfaction of seeing the
is generally deemed tiny. These houses, however tiny, are built to last as
work they have completed each day. They are enjoying the class, and seem
long as traditional homes, use traditional building techniques and materials,
to be learning about leadership, construction, and project management,”
and are aesthetically similar to traditional homes.
she added. “There is also satisfaction in knowing the finished product will go to someone in need.”
project management elective
The students get the satisfaction of seeing the work they have completed each day. They are enjoying the class, and seem to.be learning about leadership, construction, and project management. There is also satisfaction in knowing the finished product will go to someone in need. A PRIL SIM ON S
QUOIN MAGAZINE 2017
FALL CAREER EXPO
// Fall 2017 CAREER EXPO
The faculty, staff and students at the McWhorter School of Building Science express a
sincere appreciation to the 89 companies that participated in the 2017 BSCI Fall Career Expo, held on October 4 at the Beard Eaves Coliseum. This year’s expo included two events—Career Fair and Interview Day—over a span of two days.
ABC OF ALABAMA
MCSHANE CONSTRUCTION, CO.
MESSER CONSTRUCTION, CO.
AGC OF ALABAMA
AJAX BUILDING CORPORATION
MILL CREEK CONSTRUCTION (MCRT, LLC)
ALABAMA RURAL MINISTRY
MONTGOMERY MARTIN CONTRACTORS, LLC
AMERICAS HOME PLACE
FULCRUM CONSTRUCTION, LLC
NEW SOUTH CONSTRUCTION
GA WEST & COMPANY
AUSTIN COMMERCIAL, LP
BALFOUR BEATTY CONSTRUCTION-GEORGIA
GILBANE BUILDING, CO.
RA-LIN AND ASSOCIATES, INC.
BARTON MALOW COMPANY
HC BLAKE COMPANY, INC.
HENDRICK CONSTRUCTION, INC.
BENNING CONSTRUCTION, CO.
HENSEL PHELPS-SE DISTRICT
BL HARBERT INTERNATIONAL, LLC
HITT CONTRACTING, INC.
ROBINS & MORTON
BRASFIELD & GORRIE, LLC
SIGNAL ENERGY CONSTRUCTION
BUILDERS FIRST SOURCE
HOLDER CONSTRUCTION, CO.
BUILTECH SERVICES, LLC
THE AUSTIN COMPANY
CADDELL CONSTRUCTION CO., LLC
JAMES R. THOMPSON, INC.
THE BECK GROUP
CARROLL DANIEL CONSTRUCTION, CO.
JE DUNN CONSTRUCTION
THE COMFORT GROUP
CBG BUILDING COMPANY
JES HOLDINGS-FAIRWAY CONSTRUCTION
THE CONLAN COMPANY
CECO CONCRETE CONSTRUCTION
JOHN W. MCDOUGALL CO., INC.
THE CHRISTMAN COMPANY
JUNEAU CONSTRUCTION, CO.
THE NASSAL COMPANY
CENTURY CONSTRUCTION & REALTY
KAJIMA BLDG & DESIGN GROUP, INC.-ATL
THE WHITING-TURNER CONTRACTING, CO.
KEVIN PRICE CONSTRUCTION
TRIO ELECTRIC LCC
TURNER CONSTRUCTION COMPANY-SE
CONSTRUCTION ENTERPRISES, INC.
LINBECK GROUP, LLC
WILLIS A SMITH CONSTRUCTION, INC.
M.J. HARRIS CONSTRUCTION SERVICES, LLC
D.R. HORTON, INC.
MCCARTHY BLDING COMPANIES-SE
DEANGELIS DIAMOND CONSTRUCTION
fall career expo
QUOIN MAGAZINE 2017
ASC REGION 2 COMPETITIONS
// McWhorter School of Building Science WINS BIG AT ASC REGION 2 COMPETITIONS
Auburn University student teams and faculty were big winners
in the Associated Schools of Construction Southeast Region Competitions in
team of Jared Torbett, Will Graves, Hannah Redifer, Joey Kauffman, Doug
Dr. Paul Holley coached the winning Open Concrete competition
Atlanta this October. Student teams from the McWhorter School of Building
Cotter and Tommy Ellis. The Open Concrete problem statement proposed by
Science won three out of four ASC competitions, and Dr. Wes Collins, assis-
Baker Concrete Construction, involved cast-in-place concrete for a multi-family
tant professor, received a regional teaching award.
high-rise project for a project located in West Palm Beach, Fla. The project
The Associated Schools of Construction (ASC) is the professional
was planned in a very dense logistical location with very little laydown area,
association for the development and advancement of construction education.
a challenge on many fronts. In addition to providing organizational charts,
The ASC Southeast Region 2 is comprised of the colleges and universities
roles and responsibilities, and past experience in similar projects, the team
with construction management, science and technology degrees in Alabama,
had to provide typical floor cycle and details during the competition.
Florida, Georgia, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia, and
Tennessee. â€œWe had 190 students, 27 different teams, and 11 universities
Tom Leathem won first place and Best Presentation in their competition.
from around the southeast participating in the competition,â€? said Tom
Team members include Erin Allee, Hannah Cornelius, Hunter Whitten, Frank
Leathem, assistant professor in the McWhorter School of Building Science
Daniel, Chase Merrill, and Alex Adolph. Ryan Parker and Terrence Maloney
The Design Build Team coached by Professors Alan Bugg and
and Regional Director for ASC Region 2.
The Commercial competition team, coached by Mike Hosey, won
first place in their competition that was a problem statement proposed by
We had 190 students, 27 different teams,
Holder, involving a 219,000 square-foot, eight-story, Class-A corporate
and 11 universities from around the
office. It concerned Construction Management at Risk (CMAR) services required from the Construction Manager (CM), which included precon-
southeast participating in the competition.
struction, construction, and post-construction phase services. The Auburn
TOM LE ATHEM
Commercial competition team members were: Eric Brazell, Kara Boyer, Wheeler Jones, Connor Dunn, Corey Pope, and Daniel Arnburg. Julia Allen and Jarrett Jackson were alternates.
ASC region 2 competitions
The students participate solely for the experience and the honor of representing their school and the university. Our exceptional coaches fully comprehend what an excellent learning experience student competitions provide and are prepared to spend the time getting the teams competition ready. RICH A R D BURT
were listed as shadows. The Design Build division’s problem statement was proposed by McCarthy Building Companies, Inc. and was for the design and construction of a new parking garage for a healthcare campus that could be easily converted into a medical office building. Their proposal included design, estimating/cost management, constructability reviews incorporated into design decisions, building information modeling (BIM), project scheduling, construction safety, and means of management for both the design and construction of the project along with their integration for overall benefit through this delivery method. Energy saving elements were incorporated
A big thank you to the
19 companies that came on board to help the teams
into the winning project.
ROBINS & MORTON
Team members listed as shadows participated in the preparation
leading up to the competition. “Shadows are put on teams from other schools
MARTIN & COBEY
and participate in a mini competition,” says Professor Bugg. James Pugh
was a member of the winning shadow team in the Heavy Civil division.
DUNN BUILDING COMPANY
students,” said Richard Burt, Head of the McWhorter School of Building
Science. “The students participate solely for the experience and the honor
JE DUNN, TURNER CONSTRUCTION
of representing their school and the university. Our exceptional coaches fully
BRASFIELD & GORRIE
“Our teams are made up of outstanding and highly motivated
comprehend what an excellent learning experience student competitions provide and are prepared to spend the time getting the teams competition ready.”
Also contributing to the teams’ success was the industry support
that Evan Thomas, a member of the CADC Development team, was able to garner. “A supportive industry provided financial and professional backing for the competition teams. We raised more than $35,000. The industries were eager to help students. It is a great solution to engage our sponsors with the competition teams and at the same time provide a unique networking opportunity for our students,” Thomas said. Thomas also organized a
please send us your news
Presentation Day for the different teams to make mock presentations before
The McWhorter School of Building Science alumni are achieving
a panel of industry representatives, a day before the competition.
gre at things profe s sionally and p er sonally. Ple ase email email@example.com with your news. Send us news and photos of your professional successes (promotions, awards, etc.) and personal news (marriage, births, personal accomplishments, etc.), and we may include it in the next issue of the Quion.
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The Quoin is a magazine for Building Science published twice a year by the Auburn University College of Architecture, Design and Constructio...
Published on Jan 23, 2018
The Quoin is a magazine for Building Science published twice a year by the Auburn University College of Architecture, Design and Constructio...