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Sault College bridge building competition returns with livestream event

New open category will see parents, college/university students, and design professionals compete for cash prizes
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The annual bridge building contest was held at the Sault College on May 11, 2019.

In a news release issued today, Sault College announced the return of its Bridge Building Competition, which will be livestreamed on Friday, March 11, states a release issued today.

Open to area students in Grades 4 through 12, the competition tasks participants with designing and creating balsa wood bridges which will be subjected to strength tests during the livestream event.

New this year will be the open category which will see parents, college/university students, and design professionals compete for cash prizes.

Sault College will host three bridge building workshops for students and teachers throughout February.

Full text of the Sault College news release follows:

Sault College, in partnership with Professional Engineers Ontario (PEO), is excited to announce the return of the annual Bridge Building Competition. Given current public health guidelines, this year’s competition will be livestreamed on Friday, March 11, 2022!

This activity is open to elementary and high school students from Grades 4 to 12 and promotes learning in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM). Students will design, create, and submit the balsa wood bridge of their choice and compete against their fellow classmates for prizes and bragging rights. Student’s bridges will be tested to determine the winner in a virtual livestreamed event.

In addition, the Bridge Building Competition will now have cash prizes for the Open Category! This is an opportunity for parents, college/university students, as well as design professionals to compete for their own bragging rights to determine who is the best bridge builder.

“We are extremely happy to bring back the competition this year after having to cancel the event for the past two years,” says Marc Pilon, P.Eng, professor/coordinator of the Civil Engineering Program at Sault College as well as Chair of the PEO Algoma Chapter. “This competition is one of our most exciting recruitment events at Sault College, as well as a mainstay to the engineering and architecture community here in Algoma reaching back more than three decades.”

“Traditionally, this event is held on a Saturday, but we decided to host it on a Friday to allow students and teachers to watch their bridges be crushed live during class. We hope to recreate some of the excitement we had here at the College when the testing was done in person,” says Pilon. Classes who register have the opportunity to win a pizza party for their class during the livestream of the event.

To further streamline this year’s competition, students/teachers can order the balsa wood kits on the event’s Eventbrite page. 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 Thursday, March 8, 2022, at 8 p.m. Cost of the kits are $3 each.

To further support the competition, Sault College will be running three bridge building workshops for students and teachers. The registration information for these workshops can be found on the Eventbrite page:
    •    Session #1: Friday, Feb. 11, 2022 (9:30 – 10:30 a.m.)
    •    Session #2: Friday, Feb, 18, 2022 (10:15 – 11:15 a.m.)
    •    Session #3: Friday, Feb. 25, 2022 (1 – 2 p.m.)

“This year, the Professional Engineers of Ontario (PEO) celebrates its 100th Anniversary, and as the Algoma Chapter, we’re proud to have hosted the Bridge Building Competition with Sault College for over 30 years by educating and inspiring our youth to pursue the field of science and math and consider a great profession that serves our public,” says Robert Bressan, P.Eng, vice-chair of the PEO Algoma Chapter.

To meet the unprecedented demand in the construction and engineering industry, Sault College offers learning opportunities in Civil Engineering Technology, Construction Techniques, as well as Construction Project Management to support students interested in this exciting career! For more information, visit here.