Initiatives for student-industry engagement: Discussion Session

Alexandra Jane Wyatt MacLaren, Mohamed Samir Abdel-Wahab

Research output: Contribution to conferenceAbstractpeer-review


Student-industry engagement is paramount for experiential learning in built environment-related degree programmes. Initiatives such as CONSTRUCTIONARIUM, TEAMBUILD, CEMENT, MERIT,...etc provide students with an opportunity to build-up their experience in the construction industry. Employers are concerned about student’s readiness for employment and therefore universities are keen to demonstrate effective preparedness of their graduates for work in the modern construction industry. An increasing number of initiatives attempt to support student’s readiness for the workplace, but there is no current synthesis of the landscape of student-industry engagement for sharing good practice.
The recent publication on ‘the future of professionalism’ by Paul Morrell for the Edge Commission, highlights the importance of Industry engagement, and ‘Collaboration for Change’. In addition, the Lambert Review of ‘Business-University collaboration’ pointed out the employer’s concern of the mismatch between the courses offered at universities and skills required. Therefore, the aim of this discussion session is to provoke a critical analysis of existing initiatives, highlighting the scope, discipline covered, professional/industry endorsements, integration within the curriculum,...etc.
The session will commence with an overview of some existing initiatives [as noted above], highlighting distinctive qualities and similarities/differences along with some of the lessons learned.
The subsequent discussion will be guided by the following questions:
1) How can the cyclical, fast-paced timetable of academic semesters effectively engage meaningfully with industry? What is the best form and optimum length of a student-industry engagement experience?
2) At what stage are student-industry engagement projects most appropriate, and most beneficial i/ to the students ii/ to industry
3) How do universities’ administrative and qualification systems (e.g. multi-mode/multi-campus - internationalisation) affect/constrain student-industry interaction?
4) How can professional bodies benefit from the existing initiatives for student-industry engagement?
5) How is industry incentivised to engage with university students? (e.g. INSPIRE scholarships)?
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 4 Sept 2015
EventInnovation in Built Environment Education 2015 - University of Bath, Bath, United Kingdom
Duration: 3 Sept 20154 Sept 2015


ConferenceInnovation in Built Environment Education 2015
Abbreviated titleiBEE 2015
Country/TerritoryUnited Kingdom


  • Construction industry
  • Education
  • Collaboration
  • Higher Education
  • professionalism

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Building and Construction
  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Architecture


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