Schools encouraged to participate in MoDOT’s 19th Annual Bridge Building Competition

Judges test the strength of one of the entries in MoDOT's 2021 Bridge Building Competition in 2021.

(KBSI) – The Missouri Department of Transportation is sponsoring its 19th Annual Bridge Building Competition.

This is for high school juniors and seniors in the Southeast District’s 25-county region.

The competition challenges students to design and construct the most efficient model bridge using limited materials−balsa wood, thread and glue.

Schools must register by Sept. 9 to compete in the competition. To register, teachers will email their students’ information in the registration spreadsheet to anita.clark@modot.mo.gov and gretchen.hanks@modot.mo.gov. Tap here for the registration spreadsheet.

Bridge kits will be mailed to participating schools the week of Sept. 26. Completed bridges will be picked up from participating schools Monday, Oct. 31 and Tuesday, Nov. 1.

To participate, high schools must complete and turn in at least 75 percent of the bridge kits received. The completed bridges must be available for pick up on the specified dates and should only use materials supplied in MoDOT’s bridge kit.

Bridges entered in the competition will be tested Thursday, Nov. 17 at Southeast Missouri State University’s Academic Hall, located at 900 Normal Ave. in Cape Girardeau, Missouri.

The lightest bridge to carry the greatest load will be declared the winner. Prizes will be awarded for the most aesthetic bridge and to the winner of the electronic bridge competition. High schools must attend to win.

Prize donations and supply sponsorships have been made possible by the following businesses and organizations: SE Chapter Transportation Employee Association of Missouri, SE Chapter of Missouri Society of Professional Engineers, Three Rivers College, Bacon Farmer Workman Engineering & Testing, and the Southeast Coalition for Roadway Safety.

MoDOT also partnered with Arkansas State University, Southeast Missouri State University, Missouri University of Science and Technology, and Southern Illinois University to offer seniors interested in civil engineering up to $10,000 in scholarships.

The Missouri State Highway Patrol and the Southeast Missouri Coalition for Roadway Safety will be on-hand to discuss the importance of buckling-up with the Seat Belt Convincer, which simulates how it feels to be in a traffic crash. The Coalition will also have a Fatal Vision Goggles simulation that demonstrates how quickly impairment can turn into devastating consequences for drivers.

Related story: Oak Ridge, Chaffee, Perryville schools win MoDOT’s 18th Annual Bridge Building Competition

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