Scottish students win global virtual building contest for second year

Four students from Scotland’s Glasgow Caledonian University have won the third annual CIOB Global Student Challenge competition, beating five international teams in a five-months-long contest to successfully run a virtual construction firm.

They received £2,000 in prize money, and access to mentoring from industry leaders who will offer advice and guidance on professional development.

In the final, held at the Grand Hyatt Hong Kong, the team, called, Cali Construction, held off the challenge from five teams from Australia, Hong Kong, South Africa and China.

In the competition, teams run a virtual construction company in a simulated environment using the MERIT software.
Developed at Loughborough University, it has been used to train young professionals since 1988 as part of in-course modules in degree programmes.

The software enables students to develop business management skills, requiring them to take decisions on staffing levels, estimating and bidding, managing cash flow and capital and seeking investment opportunities.

Around 50 teams from universities all over the world entered the 2016 competition, which began in March.

After six rounds of competing the top six ranking teams travelled to Hong Kong for the leg of the challenge lasting from 10 to 15 July.

Cali Construction team member Peter McElroy said, "Winning topped off what was a fantastic event. Everyone involved was part of something very special. Our team had a real blend of personalities, but with a common purpose. The clear strategy, listening and compromising gave us our best results."

A team from Australia’s Bond University came second, while a University of Cape Town squad came third.

The other three finalist teams were from The Hong Kong Polytechic University, Chongqing University and Deakin University, Australia.

Cali Construction managed to match the achievement last year’s entrants from Glasgow Caledonian, Saltire, who also won.

To find out more about Global Student Challenge head here.

Image: The team collected their award from CIOB President Paul Nash, at podium, on 15 July. From left, Peter McElroy, Duncan McAslan, Richard Boyle, and Sam Belkaid (CIOB)

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