Taking Silver

Yesterday’s weather was perfect for being out on the lake all day. Day two of the ASCE competition was spent out on West Pointe Lake right on the border of Alabama and Georgia.

 

IMG_0259

 

All 20 or so schools set up tailgating tents for hanging out all day.

 

IMG_0258

 

On the bus ride over, I had a Greek yogurt and some of the granola that Marianne gave me.

 

IMG_0250

 

Saturday’s main event was concrete canoe racing. They raced all day long, different heats like girls’ endurance, boys sprints, etc.

IMG_0263

 

It takes way more strength to row a concrete canoe than a regular canoe. Plus, since they are handmade, any little error can make the boat want to go to the left or right.

 

Our girls made it look easy! (We were in the yellow.)

 

IMG_0264

 

Our canoe this year was named…. Talladega Knights. We are the UCF Golden Knights.

 

IMG_0268

 

We all gathered to watch the racing and show our school spirit!

 

IMG_0257 

 

Next up was my competition, Geotechnical Engineering. We had to build a retaining wall using only poster board, tape, and construction paper.

 

IMG_0291

 

We had thirty minutes to design and install our wall into our premade sandbox.

 

IMG_0281

 

We  had a method to our madness…

 

IMG_0287

 

We then added tons of dry sand to our box, compacted, and filled to the top.

 

IMG_0273

 

We had great team work, and got everything finished before the thirty minutes was up.

 

IMG_0301

 

Not only did our retaining wall hold all the sand in the box, it held the added 50 lbs…. PLUS our team captain and president. I would say we were successful!

 

Only two schools out of 10 had retaining walls that even held the sand in the box.

 

 IMG_0312   

 

Go team! Aren’t are matching shirts EPIC!?

 

IMG_0277 

 

By the time we got done, it was 2:00pm, and the lunch line was about to close! I was looking forward to my requested veggie sub but they were out!?!

 

I got stuck eating nasty bar-be-que. 😦

 

IMG_0314

 

The company was enjoyable, even though the food was not.

  

IMG_0315

 

Later that night, we got all dressed up and headed to the awards banquet. We all had a feeling that we had done well this year, and couldn’t wait to see how we placed!

 

The first award received was for Geotech! We placed third out of twenty schools!  We were the only small competition to get top three from UCF. So proud!

 

 IMG_0320

 

Our concrete canoe placed third overall, and won a bunch of other awards as well.

 

IMG_0324 

 

Steel bridge took first for the second year in a row! HOORAY!

 

IMG_0326

 

The last award announced was the overall winner. UCF took home second place, and we could not be happier! Each year we have improved, and we’re going for gold next year!

 

Obviously, we headed to the bar to celebrate.

     IMG_0342 

IMG_0353

 

It was a blast!

 

Sunday morning, we had to get on the bus at 10:00 am, which felt way too early. Our hotel stay came with free Waffle House brunch, and I never pass up free food.

 

IMG_0363 

 

Welcome to Affle house.

 

IMG_0362

 

Ten hours later, I was back at home, crashing in my bed!

 

I had a great weekend, and am so proud of UCF!!

 

❤ MegaNerd

Advertisements

Kicking Booty

We are rocking this conference, and having a blast while we’re at it!

 

IMG_0219

 

We have been going non-stop every since we arrived. Friday night, we walked over to the Ruby Tuesday for a group dinner. It takes a LONG time to get 55 students their dinner, and it was almost 10:00pm by the time we ate.

 

IMG_0182

 

I was STARVING, so I ordered both the spring rolls appetizer

 

IMG_0188  

 

…stocked up at the salad bar…

 

IMG_0186

 

…and had a couple of Sam Adams beers.

 

IMG_0184

 

I also met my two lovely roommates for the weekend! They are so sweet!

 

IMG_0181

 

Saturday morning we got up bright and early and headed to the Auburn campus, which by the way is gorgeous! It feels so much more traditional than UCF.

 

IMG_0198

 

Our competitions were all over the school, and I got to see most of it.

 

IMG_0204

IMG_0203 

IMG_0191

 

My first competition was Transportation, which I was the captain of. It turned out pretty bad, because it wasn’t really what we expected at all. It’s only a tiny portion of the weekend, so I didn’t really let it bother me.

 

After my competition, we watched a few presentations, and headed over to the Balsa Dome competition. Ours is the one on the right hand side that looks like its made with way more wood than all the others. It held alot, but since it was really heavy our ratio was a little low.

 

IMG_0205

 

Next, we tested our concrete cylinder. It’s really fun to put it in “the crusher”.

 

IMG_0190

 

Half way through the day, we broke for Lunch on the Lawn.

IMG_0199 IMG_0200

 

When lunch time rolled around, I was STARVING! I had a Clif bar and an apple on the bus but it didn’t really hold me. I was so happy to receive my free Chick-fila sandwich.

 

IMG_0202 

 

After lunch, ten of us headed over for the construction competition. We broke into three teams of three plus an extra person. Each team was designated as:

  • Design
  • Materials
  • Construction

 

IMG_0219

 

The first team, the Design team, had thirty minutes to design a tower that could be built using only office supplies. They couldn’t touch the materials, they only knew what we would have to work with. They had to leave detailed plans for the materials people to come behind and prep the stuff.

 

IMG_0208

 

We weren’t allowed to talk to the designers, or the people cutting our materials. I was in the third group, construction, and had to follow the directions that the other two groups had left for us. Luckily, we had a great group and we finished in plenty of time!

 

IMG_0210

 

The towers are judged on a few things including how closely we came to matching the original design (we were spot on!), structural sound (ours was rock solid!), creativity (maybe lacking), and aesthetics.

 

The other schools had some nice designs, so we’ll see how we place!

 

IMG_0220 

 

We then raced over to catch the steel bridge competition, and we almost missed it! The team works all year for this, and they did an awesome job. Wish I could show you!

 

Try and copy that epic bridge, punks!!

 

 

Friday was a long, draining day, but I still managed to muster up energy for a run! I met up with a blog reader from Auburn, Marianne, for a foot tour of the town.

 

IMG_0236

 

We ran somewhere between 5.0-6.0 miles (I didn’t have my Garmin) through downtown, campus, and up and down hills.

 

She was so sweet (and speedy!) It was wonderful to meet a new friend! Marianne even brought me goodies!!!!

 

IMG_0249

 

Oh man, I definitely got my butt kicked by those hills. I have lost so much endurance and speed since running the marathon! (I took about four weeks off running and am just getting back into it.)

 

After our run, and working on some competition stuff, I dragged my friends out to a restaurant recommended by Marianne, Amsterdam Cafe!

 

IMG_0247

 

I dove straight into the bread. It was warm, flaky, and buttery. I died and went to carb heaven.

 

IMG_0238

 

I got the worlds’ BEST SALAD! Ok… I was just really hungry.

 

IMG_0239

 

Seriously, though. Grilled Salmon, warmed mango, pecans, and sweet rum vinaigrette? Can’t go wrong!

 

I sucked down so many glasses of water, I could have been mistaken for a camel.

 

IMG_0244

 

We LOVED it! Thanks, Marianne! 😀

 

Today was another full day of competition. We are off to the awards banquet! I will be back in the morning to recap the rest of the trip!

 

GO KNIGHTS!

 

❤ MegaNerd

Auburn Bound + ASCE 2009

I’m currently blogging from the road!

 

The charter bus picked us up this morning, and we are off to Auburn University in Alabama! I’m heading there for this year’s Southeast Regional Conference.

 

(Last year’s conference, March 2009)

IMG_0731

 

Since there isn’t much happening right now other than a whole lot of sleeping (and eating trail mix) I figured I’d recap LAST YEAR’s conference! It’s set up basically the same every year.

 

Last year around the same time, about 55 ASCE members packed the bus and headed to Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tennessee.

 

IMG_0700

 

It was a super cold and wintery looking weekend, but still pretty!

 

IMG_0706

 

Civil Engineering involves many different aspects covering pretty much everything that makes a city “civilized”. Think running water, roads, buildings, infrastructure, etc.

 

The conference has several different competitions, and a few members participate in each. Last year, I participated in the transportation competition.

 

Friday is the main conference day. We all go around and support each other and cheer one another on. It all starts with testing the concrete canoes.

 

IMG_0689

 

 

Yep, canoes made of concrete. We named ours, Krack Killz

 

IMG_0705

IMG_0709

 

We race them on Saturday, so they have to be checked for safety. They are submerged in water, and they have to float to the top to pass the test.

 

IMG_0724

 

See all the cool layers?

 

IMG_0690

 

Then there is Balsa Wood bridge. Super thin wood + glue + heavy load until it cracks. Strongest one for least amount of wood wins!

 

IMG_0704 

 

…and Concrete Cylinder (trying to make the best mix design)…

 

  IMG_0717 

 

…and everyone’s favorite, Steel Bridge!

 

  IMG_0740

 

Saturday is spent at the lake. This is when we get to race the canoes!

 

IMG_0747

 

Racing the canoe is hard, but they make it look easy!

 

IMG_0745 

IMG_0746

 

It was freezing last year, I’m crossing my fingers for nice weather!

 

Once all the competitions are done, points are added and winners are selected. Saturday night is all about the banquet. We get dressed up, have a fancy dinner and let loose!

 

IMG_0760

 

I wish I would have been blogging last year, the food was EPIC! Don’t worry, I’ll take the camera this time.

 

Last year we placed third overall! Go UCF!

 

IMG_0767   

 

Everyone works very hard to get here and I really hope that we can do well again this year!

 

(Note the short dark hair and bangs… maybe I should do that again?)

IMG_0761

 

This year, I am the captain of the transportation team! One of my members got sick, so I’m a bit nervous but I think we will be fine.

 

We just got to Auburn, and I’m off to the captains’ meeting! I can’t wait to share the weekend with you all.

 

Were you a part of any professional organizations in college? Have you been on a “field trip” to a conference before?

 

❤ MegaNerd