The American Society of Civil Engineers’ 20th Annual Popsicle Stick Bridge Competition took place Saturday, Feb. 15, at California State University, Northridge. During the event, 250 students from local high schools across the city made up 70 teams that competed to build the strongest bridge, which can hold the largest applied load before failure.
CSUN engineering students assisted the high schoolers with their project presentations. The high school students also participated in an impromptu building session where they created small-scale workable cranes out of a random collection of materials they were given. The day was meant to spark the participants’ imaginations, and also possibly give them a glimpse of their futures.
“Our goal is to get the kids interested in structural and civil engineering,” said CSUN civil engineering senior Bolynet Sieng, a member of CSUN’s chapter of the American Society of Civil Engineers and one of the event’s coordinators. “The day is going to be a lot of fun as the kids discover how the bridges they built function during the competition and get to make presentations on their work.”
The winning team was from Garden Grove High School. Their bridge withstood a load of 1,280 pounds.
The event was held in conjunction with the Orange County Younger Member Forum and San Bernardino/Riverside Younger Member Forum. It also featured a tour of the facilities guided by volunteer CSUN students.