1940s – 1950s
The Department of Building Construction Management grew from a craft-oriented, non-degree program that was initiated in 1946 to retrain the returning GIs. The nature of this program slowly shifted from post-war, non-academic teaching of construction craft skills to academic teaching of drafting and surveying skills through the 1950s.
In 1964, the post-war program became the new Department of Architectural and Civil Engineering Technology, part of the newly created College of Technology. The new Department was housed on the three regional campuses -- Fort Wayne, Hammond, and Indianapolis -- with eight full-time faculty and 187 students in the two associate-degree programs of architectural technology and civil engineering technology.
In 1966, the department name was changed to the Department of Construction Technology, and Prof. D. Dorsey Moss, a faculty member at the Fort Wayne campus, was appointed department head. The following year, a two-year, add-on baccalaureate curriculum--construction technology--was approved. During the same year, the position of department head was moved to the West Lafayette campus where the construction technology program could be initiated there.
By 1974, the four-campus department had grown to 588 students and 27 full-time faculty. However, 427 of the students and 26 of the faculty were located at the regional campuses, leaving 161 students and Dr. Moss (as the lone full-time faculty member and department head) at the West Lafayette campus. At that point, the University granted autonomy to the regional campuses, which, for all practical purposes, made them separate institutions, and freed the department at the West Lafayette campus from responsibility to the regional campuses. Dr. Moss was able to pursue his goal of excellence in construction management education at the West Lafayette campus.
The Department continued to grow to an enrollment of 200 students and a faculty of six by 1976, and its name was changed to the Department of Building Construction and Contracting.
Additionally, revisions in the curriculum were initiated to meet the standards of the American Council for Construction Education, and by July 1979, the Department was accredited.
1980s – 1990s
In 1981, funding was approved for the construction of a College of Technology building. Construction began in 1982 on the new Knoy Hall College of Technology. By 1984, the Department of Building Construction and Contracting, along with six other departments and the school's administrative offices, moved to Knoy Hall. For the first time, the Department would have dedicated space for classrooms and laboratories.
Also in 1981, Dr. Moss stepped up to devote all of his energies to the teaching of future constructors, and Prof. Donald C. Ellison was appointed department head in 1982. Prof. Ellison remained in that position until 1992 when Prof. Stephen Schuette was appointed to the leadership position.
From 1981 until today, many improvements and positive changes have taken place. In order to reflect today's departmental vision and mission that incorporate the changing technology and advances, the department's name has changed to the Department of Building Construction Management (BCM), effective late 1996.