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University as Partner: Building Professional Relationships between Construction Programs and Their Institutions

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2017 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


Columbus, Ohio

Publication Date

June 24, 2017

Start Date

June 24, 2017

End Date

June 28, 2017

Conference Session

Construction 3: Beyond the Academy: Leveraging Partnerships, Internships, and Outreach

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James W. Jones Ball State University

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Dr. James W. Jones is the Construction Management Program Director and an Associate Professor in Ball State University’s Department of Technology. He has taught in the areas of leadership and construction management for more than 14 years and has more than a decade of experience managing construction projects in both field and office environments.

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Construction engineering and construction management programs often seek industry partners as sources of curricular advice, case studies, field trips, guest instruction, internships, and permanent placement for graduates. These partnerships can be leveraged to enhance and improve programs’ resources and better prepare graduates for the professions upon which they are about to embark. While the focus is typically on partnering with external entities, programs often overlook their own institutions as valuable potential partners.

Colleges and universities have sophisticated facilities, planning, and management departments that can provide a variety of easily-accessible resources and involvement. While many construction engineering and construction management programs might attend a bid opening or tour a new campus building under construction, there are a profusion of other approaches that can be used in many of the same ways as that for external partners.

This paper examines how one construction program forged a partnership with its institution’s facilities department and how both the program and institution have benefited. Specifically, how the relationship was initiated and fostered, administrator and managerial support, instructional involvement from guest speaking through adjunct faculty status, advisory board participation, and advantages for faculty will be included. Additionally, grant opportunities, course and curriculum assistance, and internship and placement options will be detailed. Through this exploration of one program’s successful partnership, engineering educators from other institutions can decide whether their own programs could benefit through such a relationship and how to initiate develop it to fruition.

Jones, J. W. (2017, June), University as Partner: Building Professional Relationships between Construction Programs and Their Institutions Paper presented at 2017 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Columbus, Ohio. 10.18260/1-2--29058

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