Oklahoma State University to Host ASCE National Concrete Canoe Competition

Wed April 19, 2006 - National Edition
Construction Equipment Guide

Oklahoma State University (OSU) has been selected to host the 2006 American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) National Concrete Canoe Competition.

More than 400 engineering students from across the nation will travel to Stillwater, OK, for the 19th annual contest.

Qualifying teams from more than 20 universities will race their canoes on Stillwater’s Boomer Lake June 15 to 17. The competition is sponsored by Degussa Admixtures Inc., with additional support from Baker Concrete Construction, CEMEX, Pennoni, PENETRON, Bentley Systems Incorporated, U.S. Silica Company, Propex Concrete Systems and 3M Specialty Materials Division.

The canoes will be judged in four main categories: aesthetics and adherence to design parameters, a technical paper, a business presentation and races.

“We are extremely excited to host this national competition and welcome students from all participating schools,” said OSU System CEO and President David Schmidly. “Our students at OSU have maintained a tradition of excellence in the concrete canoe competition, capturing top three finishes four times in the past seven years. Now they have the opportunity to showcase their talents in our hometown.”

No ordinary chunks of sidewalk, successful entries in the contest are maneuverable, lightweight and sturdy. “Concrete” in the sense that an aggregate and a cementing agent must be used, most crafts are constructed from high-tech aggregates and admixtures including latex, super plasticizers and fly ash. They must carry as many as four paddlers and, as part of a swamp test, rise to the surface after being completely submerged.

Participation in the contest involves thousands of hours working on research, design and construction, and the student teams must detail in reports and presentations all technical and economic aspects of their projects.

The competition provides them a practical application of engineering principles learned in the classroom and important team and project management skills they will need in their careers. The event also challenges the students’ knowledge, creativity and stamina while showcasing the versatility and durability of concrete as a building material.

“The students that participate in the Concrete Canoe Competition represent the future of the engineering profession, and more importantly, the future of our nation’s infrastructure,” said ASCE President Dennis R. Martenson. “Their dedication, innovation and creativity are inspiring, and they will surely continue to amaze us as they proceed into their careers.”

The first national competition took place at Lake Lansing, MI, in 1988, when admixture supplier Degussa Admixtures Inc., formerly known as Master Builders Inc., became the sole corporate sponsor. Through the years, the competition has become highly competitive and is often referred to as the “America’s Cup of Civil Engineering.” Many teams spend an entire academic year working on their craft, most without academic credit.

For more information, call 703/295-6406 or visit www.asce.org.