ASCE Members attend Mid-Continental Competitions

Calendar Icon May 27, 2016      Person Bust Icon By Keith McGuffey     RSS Feed  RSS Submit a Story

ASCE members with their canoe, The Pershing
ASCE members with their canoe, The Pershing
UNL Civil Engineering student members of the American Society of Civil Engineers attended the annual Mid-Continent conference on April 21-23, 2016. The conference was hosted by the Missouri University of Science and Technology, and included concrete canoe races, steel bridge building races, concrete bowling tournament and a GeoWall building competition.

For the concrete canoe race, students designed and built a lightweight concrete canoe that can remain afloat in the water with several passengers. After passing this "swamp test", the boats competed in sprints and endurance races to prove the strength of the canoes. 

The steel bridge building race tested the weight and rigidity of the bridges constructed. Bridges were scored based on the weight of load they could handle and the speed of their construction.

The concrete bowling competition tested students' ability to construct a concrete bowling ball that was practical, durable, and aesthetically pleasing. Each team played five frames with the bowling ball they constructed. If the ball breaks, the team is disqualified.

GeoWall construction consisted of building a mechanically stabilized earth retaining wall of paper reinforcement taped to a posterboard wall. Uneven loads are applied to the wall to test its durability.

Elizabeth Railsback, President of the UNL chapter of ASCE, believes the conference is a great opportunity for students to network and put their skills to use while having fun in the process.

"The ASCE Mid-Continental 
Conference is a great way to not only meet civil engineering students from other universities, but to get to know the Nebraska ASCE members better. It's fun to connect with other students outside the classroom and participate in these competitions. I learned that it's also beneficial to go as a freshman so you can help UNL ASCE improve its performance as you become an upperclassmen."

The Department of Civil Engineering students placed 2nd in the concrete bowling competition, and the women's concrete canoe team placed 4th in the endurance race.

The American Society of Civil Engineers represents more than 150,000 members of the civil engineering profession in 177 countries. Founded in 1852, ASCE is the nation’s oldest engineering society. For more information, visit

Read more on the Missouri S&T site.

  • Concrete Bowling
    Concrete Bowling
  • Bridge Building Competition
    Bridge Building Competition
  • Canoe Race
    Canoe Race
  • Go Big Red Metal Sign
    Go Big Red Metal Sign

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