From July 31 through August 2, 2023, I had the opportunity to attend the 25th annual Westford Symposium on Building Science, better known as Building Science Summer Camp. 490 invited building science enthusiasts from all walks of the construction industry attended the annual event. An estimated 550 showed up to Dr Joe Lstiburek’s back yard at the end of each day (more on the end of day networking in a bit). The three-day event included presentations from some of the best building scientists, architects, and builders in the industry. People like Katrin Kingenberg, co-founder and executive director of Phius (Passive House Institute US) who gave a talk on the past, present, and future of passive house. Building Science Corporation’s own Kohta Ueno discussed multifamily buildings and summer humidity. And my personal favorite, Mark Rosenbaum’s Monitoring-Using Data to Solve Problems. A total of 14 different courses were presented to all the attendees in one giant classroom over the three-day event.
I’ve taken training from many manufacturers over the years. Manufacturers have a vested interest in seeing you succeed. If you have a good experience, you will probably use their products again, but if you have a poor experience, you’re going to talk about it, and not in a good way. The good manufacturers will provide some sort of product training, whether it’s in a video on YouTube or information on their website. Many will also offer on-site education with a factory representative. I’ve had two manufacturers send representatives to answer questions on jobs I was involved with over the past year, Rockwool and Siga.
On May 9th and 10th of 2023, the Midwest Building Science Symposium (MWBSS) will be coming to Minnesota. This two-day, all building science education event is to be held at Surly Brewing Company, 520 Malcolm Ave SE in Minneapolis. There are a total of five speakers scheduled, we will get to that list in a bit, but first, let’s talk a little about the Building Science Symposium.
2023 was my fifth trip to the International Builders Show and third time attending in Las Vegas. The Las Vegas Convention Center was the location for the event, which took place January 31 through February 2nd. This year, the International Builders Show was spread out over three different halls with a fourth outside location. According to IBS, 2023 had 70,000 people in attendance with more than 1,300 exhibitors (these totals did not include the Kitchens and Bath Industry Show (KBIS), the hardware show or the surfaces show (countertops and floor coverings), all of which also took place over the same dates.)
I recently made the 1349-mile trip from my home in Northern Minnesota to Austin, Texas. Stepping off the plane in Austin at 9:30 in the evening on November 8th, my first impression was it was hot, hot and muggy. Much different than the 35°F when I left Minnesota. I was taking my first trip to Texas to attend the Texas Building Science Symposium. A two-day event of nothing but building science education.
The Texas Building Science Symposium is an off shoot of the Midwest Building Science Symposium started by the Kansas City chapter BS and Beer group. Travis Brungardt and Joe Cook started the symposium in 2020, which I had the pleasure of attending. That first event had two speakers, Steven Baczek and Jake Bruton. In 2021, the event grew to include more speakers. This year, the symposium was held not only in Kansas City, but also in Chattanooga, Tennessee, Austin, Texas, and an upcoming event in Washington, DC. Continue reading “Construction Education-Texas Building Science Symposium”
I recently took a trip to Denver, Colorado for a couple days of construction education, specifically a two-day class on high performance HVAC and IAQ. The course was offered by Ci, or Construction Instruction and combined classroom learning with real-world, hands-on education in their adjacent testing center.