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UJ researchers and students triumph at BRICS Future Skill Challenge

The Sustainable Human Settlement and Construction Research Centre (SHSCRC) at the University of Johannesburg (UJ) is celebrating a remarkable achievement at the BRICS Future Skill Challenge, held in Johannesburg from 12th to 15th September, 2023.

A team of UJ students, trained and guided by SHSCRC researchers, claimed the gold medal in the Building Information Modeling (BIM) category of the competition, surpassing competitors from five participating countries. The team also earned one Silver, one Bronze, and two Medals of Excellence.

This outstanding achievement is a testament to the expertise and dedication of SHSCRC researchers and students, as well as the strong support of the Construction Industry Development Board (CIDB).

Prof. Clinton Aigbavboa, Director of SHSCRC, stated, “The research centre is aligned with the University of Johannesburg’s Strategic Objectives with a drive for societal impact and the 2030 National Development Plan of South Africa. The centre is committed to shaping tomorrow’s-built environment today with impact-driven multi-disciplinary research to enhance sustainable human development. We welcome opportunities for research collaboration, strategic partnerships, and technological innovation within the built environment.”

The BRICS Future Skill Challenge is a skill hackathon competition that brings together the best and brightest young minds from the BRICS nations to tackle real-world challenges using specific future skills. This year’s challenge theme was “Solving Today’s Problems using Tomorrow’s Technologies.”

The UJ team’s victory is a significant achievement for South Africa and for UJ in particular. It demonstrates the country’s commitment to innovation and to developing the skills necessary to succeed in the future economy.

In addition to their success at the BRICS Future Skill Challenge, SHSCRC researchers are also working to establish a BIM-Lab at the research centre in partnership with the BRICS Academy of Skills Development and Technology Innovation. This collaborative effort is poised to revolutionise the South African Construction Industry and enhance the future skills of students in the Built Environment.

Medallists include:

Gold Medalists: Wanda Buhle Mpingana (University of Johannesburg) and Lubabalo Xoko

(Tshwane University)

Silver Medalists: Gaositwe Pule (Witwatersrand University) and Kefiloe Mthabela (IIE

Rosebank College)

Bronze Medalists: Boitumelo Mollo (Witwatersrand University) and Phumoho Ledwaba

(Cor-built design)

Medal of Excellence Recipients: Alicia Toabeni (Department of Inf rastructure

Development) and Nkcubeko Madikazi (Central University of Technology), Karabo

Raphepele (Cor-built design), and Bongani Mkhonza (IIE Rosebank College).

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