The University of Pittsburgh at Johnstown chapter of the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) finished first place in the ASCE Mid-Atlantic Region Concrete Canoe competition held at the University of Delaware in April. The team will now advance to the ASCE National Concrete Canoe Competition (NCCC), being held June 11-13 at the University of Alabama at Tuscaloosa.
The Pitt-Johnstown team competed against Penn State University, the US Naval Academy, the University of Maryland, and Drexel University in one of 18 conference competitions held throughout the United States during the spring. Teams are evaluated based on: 1) the engineering design and construction principles used in the creation of the canoe, 2) a technical design report that details the design, testing and construction of the canoe, 3) a formal presentation on the canoe’s design and construction, and 4) the performance of the canoe in the race portion of the competition.
The members of the Pitt-Johnstown team are: Michael Zerby, Jr. (Captain), Allison Ziance (Co-Captain), Emily Babik, Jonathan Burkett, Sarah Cordek, Miranda Dibert, Alex Dysinger, Jill Hamill, Alex Kassick, Frank Mele, and Jesse Snyder. Brian Houston, assistant professor of civil engineering technology, is the club’s advisor.
This is the second time in three years that Pitt-Johnstown has advanced to the national competition. The students commented, “The result is worth all of the sacrifices we make. The win allows us to see that even a small school can succeed by being resourceful and working hard. We know that we can build our own success.”
The NCCC provides students with a practical application of the engineering principles learned in the classroom. The program also helps students to develop important team and project management skills, which they will need for their careers in the real world.
The winners of the ASCE National Concrete Canoe Competition are determined by compiling the team's total number of points from the academic and race portions of the competition. Academic scholarships totaling $9,000 are awarded to the winning teams' undergraduate civil engineering program.
Founded in 1927, Pitt-Johnstown is the first and largest regional campus of the University of Pittsburgh. A vital knowledge center and a foremost contributor to the area’s educational, social, cultural, and economic environment, Pitt-Johnstown offers a high quality educational experience that is purposefully designed to prepare students for the real world of the 21st century.