The Challenge is an international construction business contest open to all students studying a Bachelor’s degree-level course in the built environment or related field. The challenge aims to identify and shape the construction leaders of tomorrow.
The competition develops leadership skills by challenging students to run their own construction company in a simulated environment using software developed by Loughborough University.
GCU’s Team Saltire entered the final in pole position after a preliminary six elimination rounds. The team consisted of Ross Anderson, Eugene Atiso and Dale Mason from the BEng Building Services Programme and Graham Allen from the BSc in Environmental Civil Engineering Programme.
Despite disruption caused by the unfortunate arrival of Typhoon Linfa during the competition, the team maintained its lead throughout the two-day final to be crowned winner.
The successful students received £2000 prize money and will be mentored for the next 12 months by key construction industry figures to help them further develop and progress their careers in the industry.
Loughborough University, which was the only other UK University to make the Hong Kong final, finished second. Other competing universities were from Australia and Hong Kong.
Module leader and team coach Mark Phillipson, who travelled to Hong Kong with the students, said: “This fantastic achievement follows on from the second-place position achieved in the 2014 Global Student Challenge by team McRanked from GCU, highlighting the world-leading quality of our students who are transformed into world-class building professionals by our undergraduate programmes.”
Professor Iain Cameron, Dean of GCU’s School of Engineering and Built Environment, said: “At GCU we have been implementing a range of initiatives to ensure our graduates are work ready with a learning experience grounded in applied knowledge and applied research.
“I am delighted that the winning students come from what many might call a specialised sector (building services engineering) and this win demonstrates how broadly educated and industry fit and ready our graduates are. The winning team are a credit to themselves and all concerned.”
CIOB President Professor Ghassan Aouad, who is also a visiting professor at GCU, said: “We had six great teams here in Hong Kong and all of them are full of the future leaders of construction.
“There is not just one winner, there are six winners. All the teams have shown their ability and potential to reach the finals here. The great thing about Global Student Challenge is that it gives the students the chance to feel what it would be like to work in a construction company making high-level decisions. And I have no doubt that all of these finalists will be able to reach that level when they leave university.”