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University students and AIC judges participating in the AIC Collegiate Ethics Competition

Announcing the Winners of the 2022 AIC Collegiate Ethics Competition

Ethics is the cornerstone of the construction industry. Without ethics, the industry would be unable to meet its obligations to owners, the general public, and other construction professionals.

That’s why we hold an annual student ethics competition to reinforce the importance of ethics to future construction managers. Our goal is to provide a forum for construction management students to assess an ethical situation, apply the AIC Code of Ethics to the situation, and present arguments about how the situation should have been handled.

This year, the 2022 AIC Collegiate Ethics Competition brought together students from multiple colleges and universities across the U.S. to discuss an ethical issue that was pulled straight from the headlines.

We would like to announce the winners of the ethics competition, which was sponsored by Lovitt & Touché Marsh & McLennan Agency LLC, and provide information about the ethical topic that was discussed.

Winners of the 2022 AIC Ethics Competition

We are proud to announce that the team from Eastern Michigan University took home first place in the written portion of the 2022 AIC Ethics Competition. This group of construction management students narrowly surpassed the team from the University of North Florida, as determined by the top three highest weighted criteria.

Written Response Winners

We also evaluated oral responses provided by each participating team in response to the ethical issue. We heard presentations from UNF, EMU, U of H, Purdue University, and California Polytechnic State University. Each team of students was supported by coaches from the construction industry, but the coaches could not help formulate arguments, which allowed the students to take ownership of the exercise.

We are proud to announce that California Polytechnic State University took home the top prize for the oral portion of the AIC ethics competition.

Oral Response Winners

The team from the University of Houston produced the best individual response to the oral section of the competition. Our judges recognized Richard Burke from U of H as the top presenter. Congratulations Richard!

We would like to thank the following AIC representatives and Board members for providing leadership during the ethics competition.

  • Geno Hogan (Master of Ceremonies)
  • Easy Foster (Facilitator)
  • Hugh Cronin (Chief Judge)
  • Charles Berryman (Judge)
  • Gregg Bradshaw (Judge)
  • Ted Chamberlain (Judge)
  • Allen Crowley (Judge)
  • David Dominguez (Judge)
  • Mark Hall (Judge)
  • Paul Mattingly (Judge)
  • Stephen Mitchell (Judge)
  • Bradley Monson (Judge)
  • Travis Richardson (Judge)

Now, let’s review the ethical situation that was discussed during the collegiate ethics competition.

Ethics in Action: Who is Responsible for a Bridge Collapse?

The competition prompt for this year’s competition focused on a high-profile incident involving a bridge collapse on the campus of Florida International University (FIU). The incident occurred in 2018 when a pedestrian bridge collapsed after construction and led to multiple deaths.

During the ethics competition, we asked construction management students to prepare a written report and oral presentation addressing each of the following ethical issues that contributed to the incident:

1. Identify the ethical violations committed by each project party including, but not limited to, the

engineer of record, contractor, owner, and department of transportation.

2. Identify the ethical violations that had a direct and indirect impact on the loss of life, property,

and the structure.

3. Identify the ethical violations that had a direct and indirect impact on the cause of the collapse.

4. Identify the communication chain between the parties that was ethically deficient.

5. Identify the ethical actions that could have been taken to prevent the loss of life.

6. Evaluate whether a Code of Conduct like the AIC Code of Ethics would have affected each party’s actions if a code was part of all project contracts.

AIC judges evaluated the responses from each university to determine the best written and oral arguments. We were also encouraged by the participating students’ desire to learn from our experienced AIC judges by asking them for advice on how they would address the ethical situation.

The following are the responses from a select group of judges:

  • Geno Hogan: You need to know the contract. Find that owner’s agreement and know it inside out.
  • Hugh Cronin: If you don’t like to read, then you’re in the wrong industry because every contract is unique and different.
  • David Dominguez: Choose an employer wisely because that reputation will follow through. If you work for an unethical company, then you will be seen as unethical.
  • Travis Richardson: Make sure you’re respectful of experienced people. Relationships are significant in the industry – no matter what part of the country you work in.
  • Ted Chamberlain: Join AIC. Get certified! Always be a student of the business. Always be willing to learn and seek out people with more experience to mentor and guide you.

Get Involved in Next Year’s AIC Ethics Competition

We appreciate everyone who participated in the 2022 AIC Collegiate Ethics Competition. We hope that both students and construction professionals walked away from the competition with a greater appreciation for ethics in construction.
– We invite you to learn more about how to get involved in the AIC ethics competition. Simply complete the form on this website page to let us know that you would like to participate in next year’s competition. We appreciate your support!

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