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Midwood students participate in award winning ACE Mentor Program

Posted on Wednesday, May 11, 2016 by for Awards, Miscellaneous.

Team 30 from the ACE Mentor Program of Greater New York City won First Place and $5,000 at the CIRT-ACE Mentor National Design Competition for their New York City shoreline project, "RESILIEN-City". Midwood students William Xie, Adam Abdelhadi, and Jhecy Balansag were members of Team 30. Midwood student Leutrim Cahani was in Team 21.

Members of Team 30 posing in front of a CIRT/ACE backdrop. 2 team members holding posters describing their project on either side. Presenter Denise Calungsod standing center holding a bouquet of flowers.CIRT logo
ACE of Greater NYC/Team 30 at the CIRT-ACE Mentor National Design Competition. The presenter for Team 30 was Denise Calungsod (holding flowers) of LaGuardia High School. Source: CIRT.

The ACE Mentor Program is a not-for-profit organization that helps prepare high school students for careers in architecture, construction, and engineering through mentoring by industry professionals. ACE teams are made up of 15–30 students and 5–7 mentors from different industry disciplines. Top teams from across the US compete at the National Design Competition, which is organized and judged by the CEO members of the Construction Industry Round Table (CIRT). This year’s finals round was held on April 28, 2016 at the Marriott Metro Center in Washington, DC.

ACE logo

ACE has grown to more than 8,000 students and 2,500 mentors in 200 cities and 40 states. The ACE Mentor Program of Greater New York City has served over 5,000 students in New York and 65,000 students nationwide. 72% of ACE students are minorities and 49% are female. ACE New York has awarded $1,887,000 in scholarships to 915 program graduates. Interested students should apply over the summer or at the start of the academic year.

  • High school students, particularly from under-represented populations, are introduced to careers in the design and construction fields.
  • Teams are made up of 15–30 students and 5–7 mentors from different industry disciplines.
  • A Team Leader sets the project schedule, prepares meeting agendas and may host or arrange the meeting location.
  • At least 15 biweekly meetings are held from 4 to 6 PM during the school year.
  • Mentors present industry overviews, assign activities from ACE’s Best Practices Manual and guide the students through the development of a design project.
  • At the end of the season, students present their project just as a real design team would present to a potential client.
  • Scholarships are awarded to top students at a luncheon in May.

Screenshot of Leutrim, seated, talking to offscreen interviewer.Skanska logo
Midwood Science student Leutrim Cahani of Team 21 describes what he appreciates about the ACE Mentor program in a Skanska USA promotional video on YouTube.