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Evaluation of the Impact of a Summer Construction Camp on Participants' Perceptions

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2020 ASEE Virtual Annual Conference Content Access


Virtual On line

Publication Date

June 22, 2020

Start Date

June 22, 2020

End Date

June 26, 2021

Conference Session

Construction Engineering Division Technical Session 2

Tagged Divisions

Architectural Engineering and Construction Engineering

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Paper Authors


Saeed Rokooei Mississippi State University Orcid 16x16

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Saeed Rokooei is an assistant professor of Building Construction Science at Mississippi State University. Saeed obtained his bachelor's degree in Architecture and then continued his studies in Project and Construction Management. Saeed completed his PhD in Construction Management while he got a master of science in Management Information Systems. He is continuing his research on simulation to provide a comprehensive supplementary method in construction management education.

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Mohammadsoroush Tafazzoli Washington State University

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Dr. Mohammadsoroush (Tommy) Tafazzoli is an assistant professor in the School of Design and Construction at Washington State University. Tommy has his bachelor degree in Civil Engineering, his master’s in Transportation Engineering and his PhD in Construction Management. Prior to joining the CM faculty, Tommy served as an instructor in the Soil Mechanic’s Lab at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas where he was doing his PhD. Besides teaching the Soil Mechanic lab, he has been an instructor for “Introduction to Civil Engineering”, and a teacher assistant for “Civil Engineering Materials”. In Addition to his academic experience, Tommy has been involved in different teaching activities since 2003. Tommy’s construction industry background comes from his international experience serving as a part-time field engineer when he was doing his bachelor’s degree between 2005 and 2008. Additionally, he has served as an estimator and a construction management assistant between 2008 and 2011. Tommy was an interne at Nevada Department of Transportation (NDOT) in 2016 where he got the chance to be exposed to heavy construction projects at Reno, Nevada. Tommy has both of the most distinguished sustainable construction credentials in the United States which are LEED AP (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design Accredited Professional) as well as the ENV SP (Envision™ Sustainability Professional). He is committed to contribute to the essential paradigm-shift in the construction education, which considers the impacts of all decisions and actions for the whole life-cycle of the projects. Tommy’s major research background is studying the causes of delays in the construction industry of the United States. In his PhD dissertation, he developed a dynamic model based on fuzzy logic which can predict the percentage of delay based on a questionnaire that assesses the project for different delay-causing factors. He also works on construction materials efficiency and has developed an index that measures the efficiency of the material use throughout the construction process. Tommy attempts to provide his students with the practical knowledge that helps them to serve successfully in the construction industry. As an active ASCE (American Society of Civil Engineers) member, he also aims at contributing to the research needs of the industrial firms at local and national level. Dr. Tafazzoli Research Interests
Measuring the risk of delay in construction projects
Sustainable construction
Integrating ‘green’ and ‘lean’ construction practices
Infrastructure assess management
Construction Productivity

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This paper concisely reports on the design and organization of a summer camp in the construction area and explores the impacts of such activities on getting students’ -and their parents’- attention in construction. Summer camps provide a path for examining positive youth development in specific areas. Camps represent environments where participants can develop their technical knowledge, social skills, and emotional intelligence through a series of theoretical and practical activities that are fun, engaging, interesting, challenging, and result in tangible outcomes in the short term. XXX program at XXX offers a summer program to increase students' interest in construction careers. This summer program attracted high school students from different areas of the state of Mississippi who had limited, if any, exposure to construction fields. The main goal of this program was to introduce the construction field and trades to students through a small-size construction project. This gave students a first-hand encounter with construction trades, increased their construction knowledge, and provided information from construction instructors and professionals to think about the construction as a future major and career. This study aimed to explore how participating in a construction summer camp affected middle and high school students’ attitudes towards construction trades and careers and their perceptions of construction careers. A group of professional instructors from the Mississippi Construction Education Foundation (MCEF) led participants for one week. Students were divided into groups of five or six and were instructed to do the main construction activities such as framing, roofing, mechanical rough-in, and electrical rough-in and the entire fabrication was done by students. A quantitative survey was administered at the end of the program. Results indicate that participation in the programs had a positive effect on the students’ understanding of what construction is and the work different construction trades perform. The results show a positive impact on participants' attitudes toward different aspects of the construction program at XXX. Also, participants reported a significant difference between their Pre- and Post-camp perceptions in construction-related subjects.

Rokooei, S., & Tafazzoli, M. (2020, June), Evaluation of the Impact of a Summer Construction Camp on Participants' Perceptions Paper presented at 2020 ASEE Virtual Annual Conference Content Access, Virtual On line . 10.18260/1-2--34606

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