One of the country’s largest construction groups has teamed up with Waterford Institute of Technology (WIT) to challenge the current difficulties in the construction market.

Ascon Rohcon’s link-up with WIT will also attempt to meet the new conditions which exist relating to public construction contracts. Both have described the new partnership as an “investment in the future”. Much to Brian Cowen’s delight, both bodies are preparing for a market upturn.

And when that upturn does come – and it will – graduates will come through what it described as a “groundbreaking joint partnership Masters programme”, equipped with the expertise required for the future.

The WIT/Ascon Rohcon MSc in Construction Project Management (CPM) is being described as a first in ‘construction executive education’ in Ireland.

According to Ascon Managing Director Brendan Barrett, “[this MSc] will inspire our project management talent ensuring we continue to deliver successful projects to our clients”.

He continued: “Industry, academia and management science have fused to produce this precedent setting innovation in learning. It represents a true investment in the belief that people are our most important asset.

“This is a good news story; it is an investment in innovation, in people, in the industry and ultimately in the future of Ireland.”

The new programme is a National Qualifications Framework (NQF)  Level 9 programme, supported by Skillnets, which enhances the skills of people in employment, supports competitiveness and employability.

The programme is industry-driven and focused, according to CPM Programme Director, John Wall. 

“This postgraduate programme uses ‘blended learning’, where technology and traditional modes of delivery are effectively merged,” he said.

“Complimenting the general MSc in Construction Project Management, Ascon Rohcon’s educational specialists, working with WIT, have developed a bespoke version of the programme tailored to their operations.”

The participants selecting by the company, numbering 20, are a mix of civil engineers, quantity surveyors and project managers.

“Courage, vision and leadership are required to make a financial outlay in an industry that is currently undergoing a traumatic downturn and the associated cost reduction programmes that go with that,” said WIT’s Construction and Civil Engineering Chief, Dr Ken Thomas.

“Not only is the MSc in Construction Project Management unique in Ireland, the bespoke version that has been developed is also a significant new development within the Irish construction industry.

“The development and the delivery of the programme has been, and will continue to be, a genuine partnership between WIT and Ascon Rohcon.

“The participants in the programme will not only get the opportunity to review theory and practice relating to Construction Project Management but they will also be encouraged to reflect on their role with Ascon Rohcon.”

So better times lie ahead. Remember where you read it first!