The Concrete Industry Management (CIM) program – a business intensive program that awards students with a four-year Bachelor of Science degree in Concrete Industry Management – is pleased to announce that the School of Concrete and Construction Management at Middle Tennessee State University (MTSU) has recently received the largest company donation to their Building Campaign from Irving Materials, Inc. With the help of this contribution, the school has reached 50 percent of its $5 million goal.
“As an employer of 14 CIM graduates between Tennessee, Kentucky and Indiana and nearly 50 summer interns, Irving Materials has always been a major supporter of our program,” said Dr. Heather Brown, Chair and Professor, MTSU School of Concrete and Construction Management. “This generous gift will allow us to achieve 25 percent of the “brick and mortar” funding we need – positioning our building as a leader in the state for industry-matched infrastructure.”
A joint initiative between MTSU and leaders from the concrete industry, the CIM program provides students opportunities to enter a broad field that has an urgent need for skilled professionals. MTSU is the first university to integrate a technical education in concrete with business and communication skills needed to advance in the industry.
“Irving Materials greatly benefits from the efforts of CIM by employing graduates whose pride in their work make our company better every day,” said Irving Materials South President Kevin Swaidner. “This is in no small part due to the foundation they received at MTSU.”
“The School of Concrete and Construction’s new building is the first priority for the next statewide capital outlay funding cycle in July 2018,” said MTSU President Dr. Sidney McPhee. “Building proposals must show an industry match to the state investment and with these recent gifts, we are nearing our goal.”
The CIM Program
Recognizing the need for people with enhanced technical, communication and management skills, the CIM program was developed in 1996. The individuals graduating from this program will have the skill set necessary to meet the growing demands of the progressively changing concrete industry of the 21st century. It is a business intensive program, providing solid management skills that can be used in any industry, but has been developed specifically for the concrete industry. The program gives students many advantages including entering the concrete work force with exposure to the industry early in their careers, unlike others coming in with generic business degrees.
The goal of the program is to produce broadly educated, articulate graduates grounded in basic business management, who are knowledgeable of concrete technology and techniques and are able to manage people and systems as well as promote products or services related to the concrete industry. It entails a broad range of courses, from English and history to science and mathematics. A series of required business courses such as finance, marketing, management and business law are also taken throughout the length of the program. The concrete-specific courses teach the fundamentals of concrete, properties and testing, concrete construction and more. All of these courses utilize practical case studies and an internship to make sure the student obtains real-world experience essential to starting a successful career. Additional opportunities for growth include on-campus socials and other organized events providing industry networking and professional development.
Receiving tremendous support from the concrete industry, the CIM program was the first of its kind in United States – a four-year Bachelor of Science degree in Concrete Industry Management. The need for such a program was recognized in 1994 and was put into action by the concrete industry. The end-result was a partnership between the concrete industry and Middle Tennessee State University (MTSU) to develop the CIM program, implementing it with its first two students in 1996. Available at MTSU, California State University, Chico, the New Jersey Institute of Technology, and Texas State University, the program has been successful for both the industry and the graduates.
Seeing the need for concrete industry-specific executive education, the NSC of the Concrete Industry Management (CIM) program launched an Executive MBA program. In the fall of 2012, the first class of students in the CIM MBA program at MTSU began. The Executive MBA degree program is the result of many years of close collaboration between MTSU, the NSC and companies in the concrete industry. The program is designed to expand the industry-academic partnership by bringing CIM to the business world through an Executive-type MBA and stand alone in its focused curriculum on the concrete production and concrete construction industries.