A Great Finish for the Concrete Canoe in Reno

A team of Youngstown State University students finished in the top 10 at the 25th annual National Concrete Canoe Competition in Reno, Nev.

The YSU team finished ninth, ahead of schools such as University of California Berkeley, Clemson University, Oregon State and Rutgers. California Polytechnic State University finished first.

The YSU team consisted of students Nathan Knapp (project manager) of Warren, Joe Reedy of Austintown, Samantha Rovnak of Austintown, Allison McMillen of East Palestine, Mike Kaldy of Brookfield, Kim Klonowski of Canton, Mich., Justin Ambrosio of Cortland and Sentel Rodgers of Youngstown. The team’s advisor was Adam DePizzo.

“We were very happy and proud to compete with the best engineering schools in the nation and finish in the top 10,” Knapp said. “With this accomplishment, YSU is clearly one of the top engineering schools in the nation.”

The American Society of Civil Engineers sponsors the three-day competition. Throughout the year, teams of civil engineering students from across the country and Canada research design and construct canoes made out of concrete. After coming out on top in regional competitions throughout the spring, the best and brightest from 22 top engineering schools matched wits and skills in the national finals.

The competition is comprised of both academic and athletic events. Students write a paper detailing the design and construction of their canoe and then give an oral presentation. They are also judged on their final product, the canoe, and their accompanying display, which further explains their design process. Finally, they put their canoe through the paces in a series of five race events—men’s and women’s slalom/endurance races and men’s, women’s and co-ed sprint races.

For more information on the competition, including photos, race results and event details, visit http://www.asce.org/concretecanoe.

YSU Engineering Students Win Concrete Canoe Competition

Youngstown State University’s Concrete Canoe team dominated their regional competition at the University of Pittsburgh on March 30, placing first in four out of five races. The team also won first place awards for best design paper and best finished product, and placed first overall in the competition. They qualified to participate in the National Concrete Canoe Competition to be held June 15-16 at the University of Nevada, Reno. Nathan Knapp, a senior in civil engineering, is the concrete canoe team captain.

The competition was part of the annual American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) Ohio Valley Student Conference, attended by civil engineering students from thirteen universities, including the University of Pittsburgh, Akron, Cleveland State, Carnegie Mellon, Ohio State, Ohio University, Cincinnati, University of Kentucky, Louisville, and Western Kentucky. The YSU students also placed second in the steel bridge building competition, earning an invitation to the National Student Steel Bridge Building Competition to be held May 24-26 at Clemson University in South Carolina. Dan Phillips, a civil engineering graduate student, is the steel bridge team captain.

In other conference events, the YSU Environmental Design team placed third out of ten teams in a contest requiring the removal of barium from hydraulic fracturing wastewater, and third place in the balsa wood bridge competition. Fourteen YSU engineering students attended the conference, along with faculty advisor, Dr. Scott Martin, and practitioner advisor, Adam DePizzo.