Students from SUNY Canton’s Canino School of Engineering Technology won third place for their steel bridge entry in the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) Upstate Regional Conference.
The ASCE Student Chapter, commonly known as the Steel Bridge Team, designed their bridge to be assembled faster than their competitors. Overall, the team won first in speed, third in lightness, fifth in stiffness, third in aesthetics, first in economy and fifth in efficiency.
“The students assembled their bridge structure in 4.57 minutes, whereas the next-fastest entry completed theirs in 11.97 minutes,” noted Instructional Support Associate Paul D. Hitchman, who is the faculty advisor for the student-run club. “Of the fifty teams that competed, they were only topped by École de technologie supérieure, Montreal [Quebec] and SUNY Buffalo.”
The SUNY Canton team finished ahead of Clarkson University, Rochester Institute of Technology, Syracuse University and other standing rivals.
The ASCE issues a set of rules designed to challenge young engineers. The students then design a steel bridge to best fit within the guidelines. Typically, the contest asks colleges to create a bridge that can be constructed on-site and span a body of water, necessitating calculated assembly techniques and precision manufacturing.
The team then spends time practicing assembling the 40 individual pieces within the tightly regulated confines of the competition, according to bridge designer Codi D. McKee a Civil and Environmental Technology major from Barker.
“We knew going in that we wanted to be fast so we designed all of our connections to be quick,” McKee said. “We calculated the amount of time needed and used the fewest number of bolts we could to hold it together.”
He added that the steel bridge project was a real world hands-on experience that allows students to apply what they’ve learned in their classes. McKee also presented research at the conference, earning a fourth and sixth place award.
The students have now been invited to compete in the national competition on May 22 at the University of Missouri, Kansas City.
In addition to Mckee, student members of the Steel Bridge Team are:
- Nathan A. Archer, an Industrial Technology major from Canton.
- Alyssa M. Baker, the club president and a Civil and Environmental Technology major from Boonville.
- Michael Crowner, a Civil and Environmental Technology major from Gouverneur.
- Gregory R. Denner, a Civil and Environmental Technology major from Ogdensburg.
- Justin J. Fuschino, a Mechanical Technology major from Schenectady.
- Zachery S. Limoges, a Civil and Environmental Technology major from Ogdensburg.
- Sarah N. Nuss, a Civil and Environmental Technology major from Wynantskill.
- Daniel Rohan, a SUNY Canton Mechanical Technology major from North Babylon.
- Alex D. Sterling, a Mechanical Technology major from Champlain.
- Jonathan Tennant, a SUNY Canton Engineering Science major from Ogdensburg.
- Joseph D. Thompson, a Civil and Environmental Technology major from Edwards.
- Michael J. Verstraete, a Mechanical Engineering Technology major from Marion.
- Andrew C. Walker, a Mechanical Engineering Technology major from Camden.
Numerous faculty and staff members assist the team, including:
- Dennis E. Tuper, an instructional support associate for the Automotive Technology program.
- Neil A. Haney, an instructional support associate for the Powersports Performance and Repair program.
- Daniel J. Miller, an assistant professor for the Mechanical Engineering Technology program.
About SUNY Canton
SUNY Canton is Northern New York’s premier college for career-driven bachelor’s degrees, associate degrees and certificate programs. The college delivers quality hands-on programs in engineering technology, health, management and public service. Faculty members are noted for their professional real-world experience in addition to outstanding academic credentials. SUNY Canton OnLine offers hundreds of flexible and convenient courses, as well as 10 exclusively online bachelor’s degrees. The college’s 14 athletic teams compete as provisional members of the NCAA Division III and the USCAA.