The annual Bridge Building Competition is happening Friday, March 10, 2023! Sault College, in partnership with Professional Engineers Ontario (PEO), is excited to once again offer an experiential learning opportunity in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) for elementary and high school students from Grades 4 to 12.
Students will design, create, and submit the balsa wood bridge of their choice and compete against their fellow classmates for prizes and bragging rights. Students’ bridges will be tested to determine the winner in a virtual live-streamed event. There is also an open category for others interested in participating in this exciting event! Last year’s competition saw 395 bridges submitted across all categories, the most successful year to date!
Students/teachers can order the balsa wood kits, as well as download the rules and registration information, on the event’s website (www.saultcollege.ca/bridgebuilding). Students/teachers will be given a time to pick up their material at Sault College once their order is processed. Bridges are to be dropped off at the Sault College Health and Wellness Centre entrance no later than Wednesday, March 8, 2023, at 7 p.m. Bridge-building workshops for students and teachers are also available and are indicated on the Eventbrite page. Classrooms that participate in the event will be entered into a raffle for a pizza party.
“Our annual bridge-building competition has become a staple event within area schools and the community. Each year we see increases in participation, as well as more enthusiasm and excitement from students in all participating grades,” says Marc Pilon, P.Eng Professor/Coordinator of Civil Engineering and Construction at Sault College. “It takes a dedicated team of volunteers from Sault College, Professional Engineers Ontario (PEO) and the Ontario Association of Engineering Technicians and Technologists (OACETT) to pull this event together so it is great to see continued excitement year after year,” Pilon says.
Based on positive feedback from last year’s event, the competition will be live-streamed. “Last year we received multiple requests from educators to keep this a live-streamed event the Friday before March Break,” Pilon added. “This a great classroom activity not only for the construction of the bridges, but to watch the crushing of the bridges as a class.”
The demand for skilled workers in the civil engineering and construction fields is at an all-time high offering today’s youth the opportunity for well-paying jobs, including paid co-op opportunities through Sault College. “The bridge-building activity showcases the engineering and construction fields and is an incredible opportunity to foster an interest in these areas. This could one day lead to a meaningful career in engineering and construction, so we encourage students to participate to learn more about STEM,” added Pilon.
Sault College offers a two-year civil engineering technician diploma program as well as a one-year construction techniques certificate, and a post-graduate certificate in construction project management. To learn more, visit www.saultcollege.ca.