The MCAA students in construction management qualified as one of the final four teams to compete at the national Mechanical Contractors Association of America (MCAA) convention in Hawaii.
Sherif Attallah associate professor and mentor of the student team in construction management founded the student chapter shortly after he came to Ball State and took over the mechanical construction courses. His involvement and innovation have led to increased industry involvement and participation in the program from mechanical contractors. As a result, students have become more aware and knowledgeable of the opportunities in the mechanical sector.
MCAA annual competition is one of the most rewarding experiences students in the CM program can gain. Challenged with real-life project problems, the students develop a comprehensive project management plan with a level of details that are very similar to professional proposals in the construction industry.
One of the highlights of the student organization is to participate in the annual competition among 60+ student chapters across the nation. In this competition, the students receive project documentation including drawings and specs for an actual project that is constructed by one of the member companies.
Teams are asked to come up with a proposal to complete the mechanical scope of work which includes establishing a virtual company, building a project organization team, coming up with a full estimate, providing a detailed schedule, creating a logistics plan, supplying value engineering ideas with system design plans, and other technical and financial deliverables.
The Ball State team spent 3 months of the fall semester working on the proposal and interacting with mechanical contractors and vendors to come up with a realistic proposal addressing all the challenges of the project. The students used Procore project management system to submit the proposal, RFIs, and manage project resources.
This year, the Ball State team from the MCAA Student Chapter made it to the top 4 judged teams that scored the highest points. The four teams were invited to the annual national convention of MCAA in Hawaii to present their proposal in front of thousands of representatives of mechanical contractors.
The team began preparing for the final competition in the spring but the final competition was cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Instead, a monetary prize was shared by Ball State and the three other national finalist teams in honor of their achievements.