WSU students win national design, construction competition

By Mary Catherine Frantz, intern, Voiland College of Engineering and Architecture

DBIA logoPULLMAN, Wash. – A team of Washington State University students earned first place in the Design-Build Institute of America’s national student competition held Nov. 8-10 in Philadelphia.

The two-phase competition involved the collaboration of students from diverse backgrounds, including architecture and construction management, responding to a request for qualifications, and request for proposals for a student health and wellness facility on a liberal arts college campus in the northwestern region of the United States.

“This competition prepares students for the real world and for what the industry looks like,” said the team’s faculty coach, associate professor David Gunderson.

WSU students accept winning award at 2017 Design Build Institute of America conference
WSU students accept winning award at 2017 Design Build Institute of America conference

The WSU team was comprised of five students: Tucker Jones, David Chun, Collin Schweikl, Kelli Young and Frederick Stidhams. The students represented all four majors offered in the WSU’s School of Design and Construction — architecture, construction management, interior design and landscape architecture.

“Students see participants from different aspects of the construction process come together and collaborate. They learn a new appreciation for their team members’ specialty,” Gunderson said.

In 2016, a team from WSU finished second in the competition.

Representing the design and construction industry, DBIA works to provide education, training, networking and support to all members involved in the construction process.

This year’s winning team received $2,000 for placing first in the regional competition, as well as $3,000 for being one of the top three teams.



  • Tina Hilding, communications director, Voiland College of Engineering and Architecture, 509-335-5095,