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Associated General Contractors

Bush Construction Interns: Where Are They Now?

Internships have the ability to make a lasting impact on both the student and the employer. While we may not stay in touch with all interns that have participated in our program, we have and will continue to remain strong supporters. Today is National Intern Day and we thought it would be fun to provide you with a “where are they now” update!

Jake Storjohann | 2015

I was an intern back in 2015, I worked with Ryan Welborn and the crew at the Davenport Fire Department. Since my internship, I graduated from the University of Northern Iowa with a construction management degree and accepted a job at Allied Construction Services as an estimator/project manager. I’ve enjoyed my time at Allied, it’s been very challenging and rewarding.

Evan Spurgetis | 2016

I interned at Bush Construction the summer after my sophomore year in undergrad (2016). The summer after my junior year I interned at Larson Engineering in their St. Louis office and worked there part-time throughout my senior year as well. After graduating from Southern Illinois University Edwardsville in 2018, they hired me full-time. I worked in their St. Louis office for one year. I then transferred to the New York City office in the summer of 2019 where I have been for the past two years.

Jacob Rockey | 2017

I graduated from Iowa State University in December 2019 and currently work for Beck Group in Dallas, Texas. My project experience since interning at Bush started with building Dickies Sports Arena in Fort Worth. I am currently working as a Project Engineer on a Hospitality Center at American Airlines Headquarters as well as working on the preconstruction/construction for a project on the University of Texas at Arlington’s Campus. I loved my experience at Bush Construction and learned a lot working under Ryan Welborn. He helped jumpstart my passion for building!

Courtney McClaine | 2018

After interning at Bush Construction, I graduated in May 2020 with a B.S. in Construction Management from the University of Northern Iowa. I am currently at Streamline Architecture and Artisans as a Design Intern – however, I do a lot as a Project Manager for our Artisans team and a Marketing Coordinator for our coffee shop, Iron + Grain. This fall, I will be attending Kirkwood Community College in their Interior Design + Architecture program. I am really grateful for my time at Bush Construction and in the construction industry in general because it will help me in my future career as an Interior Designer.

Kyle Jecks | 2019

I interned at Bush Construction the second semester of my senior year at North Scott High School through the summer leading up to my first year at Iowa State University. It was an awesome experience!

This summer I have been interning at Power Construction in Chicago, IL. The project I’ve been working is One Chicago, which is a $500M development set to be the sixth tallest building in Chicago upon completion early next year. My time working on this project and living in the city has been wonderful—a life-changing experience!

I am heading into my junior year at ISU and absolutely love the atmosphere and culture. I’m involved with American General Contractors, the ASC commercial team competition, playing trumpet in the band, and extra roles I have taken on as a resident assistant. I like to stay busy and there are plenty of great opportunities to do so!

The Cause and Effect of Construction Material Shortages and Price Increases

The Associated General Contractors (AGC) published its latest Construction Inflation Alert that offers insight on the most recent construction material shortages and price increases. There’s a lot to unpack in the edition, so we’ve highlighted some of the most important key points for you.

Seismic Pricing Fluctuations

This isn’t the first time that the construction industry has faced rapid material shortages and increased costs. In 2004, materials rose from 3.6% to 10.0% and “remained above a 5% annual rate for a total of 31 months, before subsiding to a 3.2% rate in October 2006.” Other dramatic increases came in 2008 and 2017, however, COVID-19, natural disasters, and transportation issues have caused the most significant disruptions.

From May 2020 to May 2021, the price of:

  • materials and services used in construction skyrocketed 24.3%.
  • lumber and plywood rose 111%.
  • steel mill products climbed 76%.

While some material prices have come down since mid-May, they are still higher than what prices were a year ago.

If Only Construction Projects Were Like Buying a Car

When you buy a car, the cost to build it is already factored into the total price. In construction, the cost of work isn’t realized until after material purchases are made or the work is completed. This presents a huge risk to commercial general contractors and business owners, especially when large material price increases happen after committing to a project.

If you are an owner considering a new build, addition, or renovation, here are some things to keep in mind:

  • reserve funds for additions or modifications to your project’s scope of work to mitigate risk. This can be accomplished through an owner contingency fund.
  • ask your GC about an early procurement strategy for materials such as structural steel, reinforcing, and roofing.
  • be mindful of oil prices as oil and its by-products are used in manufacturing steel, PVC pipe, roofing material, and more. When oil prices go up, so do materials and the cost to transport them.

While we cannot control the global supply chain, we can ensure your experience remains positive through open, honest, and transparent communication. Our team strives to keep clients informed of fluctuations in pricing due to forces beyond our control.

If you have any questions on how today’s pricing fluctuations might impact your project, feel free to contact us using the form below.

To read AGC’s report, click here.

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