Illinois State University’s student chapter of the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) was recognized as NAHB’s student chapter of the month for December. ISU NAHB will receive a $100 award for their accomplishment.

During the fall semester, ISU NAHB worked with Dave Mallery’s construction methods course to help build a home for McLean County Habitat for Humanity. Students put in over 500 hours of community service work constructing the floors and walls of a Bloomington home.

Mackenzie Carpenter, senior interior and environmental design major, took this class to see a house built from the ground up. The biggest challenge for Carpenter was the fact that she had no past experience with construction.

“We learned about all the fasteners we used, the I-joist, and even about the ethics of business and construction. I understand more about how in-depth building a home is. It is not a simple as drawing it on paper,” said Carpenter.

Mathew Runyon, junior construction management major, took the class as a refresher course and found himself acting as a team leader to others like Carpenter with less experience.

“I wanted to go into more detail on how to lay I-joists and laying sheeting. I also wanted to learn what it was like putting up prefabbed walls according to blue print. Since I have had previous experience building a house and additions, I mainly wanted to refresh myself on the basics,” said Runyon.

Runyon also volunteered his time on Saturdays to the project. He worked alongside other Habitat for Humanity volunteers and the couple receiving the house. Runyon’s biggest takeaway was working with this couple to help them build their new home.

“Habitat for Humanity is a great organization. It is fun working with all of the volunteers and … the guys in charge with all the experience. Even if you don’t know much or hardly know anything about construction, you will walk away with accomplishing something and learning a lot more than you thought you might,” reflected Runyon.