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Construction professors achieve home inspection certification, plan for new course

August 26, 2011 12:00AM

CMCET professors, l-r: Seth O'Brien, Shannon Nicklaus and Justin Honey

A grant awarded to the Department of Construction Management and Construction Engineering Technologies is not only bolstering the residential construction program at Pittsburg State University, but also better preparing the professors who teach it.

This summer, CMCET professors Justin Honey, Shannon Nicklaus, and Seth O'Brien completed a home inspection certification program through the National Association of Home Builders. The 80-hour live training course, which gave them hands-on training in residential home inspection, prepared them for the state licensing exam, which they will take this fall.

The certification of the professors has been a goal of the department since it was awarded a $100,000 grant from the National Housing Endowment last fall. The grant is being used to create and improve courses in the residential construction program, including the addition of a new home inspection course that will be added to the PSU curriculum by 2012.

Having the option to become certified home inspectors is a plus for students, said Honey, because it gives them more career options in a troubled economy. For example, a student searching for a job in residential construction could work as a home inspector in the meantime.

"It gives them so many more options," Honey said. The improved residential courses and certification preparations will also be offered for industry professionals. "Our mission is not only to reach students, but also the community," added O'Brien.

Their home inspection certifications are just one achievement CMCET professors have recently accrued. Professor Bill Strenth is one of the few professionals nationwide to earn the BIM (Building Information Modeling) certification, and most of the CMCET faculty have earned certifications from the NCCER (National Center for Construction and Education Research), CPC (Certified Professional Construction) and have become LEED certified - the standard for sustainable construction.

"Adding the home inspection option to our residential construction program enhances the program and makes students more marketable," Nicklaus said. "It adds one more avenue for students to further their educations."

For more information on CMCET's residential construction program, call 620-235-6555.

©2011 Pittsburg State University