Glasgow Caledonian University students win CIOB Global Challenge

Team Saltire members Ross Anderson, Dale Mason, Eugene Atiso and Graham Allen
Team Saltire members Ross Anderson, Dale Mason, Eugene Atiso and Graham Allen

Students from Glasgow Caledonian University have won the second annual Chartered Institute of Building (CIOB) Global Student Challenge competition.

‘Team Saltire’ collected their award from outgoing CIOB president Professor Ghassan Aouad after beating five other finalists to the award.

They will also receive £2000 in prize money along with access to mentoring from industry leaders who will offer advice and guidance with their professional development. In the final, held in Hong Kong, Saltire held off the challenge from five teams from around the world including, Australia and Hong Kong in the process of becoming champions.

Forty teams from universities all over the world entered the competition, which began back in March. After 6 rounds of competing the top six eligible teams travelled to Hong Kong for the finals on the 9th and 10th July.

Teams were tasked with running a construction company in a simulated environment using 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.

CIOB president Professor Ghassan Aouad 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.”

Saltire from Glasgow Caledonian beat out SSTW Construction from Loughborough to the top prize while Smurf Village from the University of Hong Kong came third. The other three finalists were: UoN Nobbys from University of Newcastle, Australia, The Might Ducts from Curtin University and JJSV Constructions from Deakin University. Saltire managed to go one better than last year’s entrants from Glasgow Caledonian, McRanked, who finished as runners up.

The final, which saw the top six eligible teams qualify, was held in Hong Kong for the second year running and was hosted by Hong Kong Polytechnic University. The final was sponsored by Wiley.

Global Student Challenge

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