SCE professor and students honored by MSPE Western Chapter

Mike Kelly, P.E. was recently honored with the 2013-2014 Leadership Excellence Achievement Program (LEAP) Award, which was established by the Missouri Society of Professional Engineers Western Chapter (MSPE WC) in 2005. Continue reading

SCE students experience engineer’s tour of KCP&L Iatan Power Plant

facutly and student working on a project in the fluids lab

Fifteen SCE engineering students received a tour of the largest coal-fired generating power plant in Missouri, the KCP&L Iatan Power Plants, consisting of two power stations, Iatan Unit 1 and Iatan Unit 2. Continue reading

SCE Blood Drive makes notable impact

The E-Week Blood Drive on February 26 sponsored by Engineers without Borders (EWB) and the Missouri Society of Professional Engineers (MSPE) student chapter registered a total of 89 donors and collected 64 units of blood for local Kansas City hospitals. There were 26 first time donors. Continue reading

UMKC SCE Hosts First Annual RooBuilders Competition

SCE students hanging out in the student lounge

The first annual RooBuilders bridge-building competition for Kansas City area middle and high school students was held on Saturday, Feb. 22 at UMKC’s Pierson Auditorium.

Eleven teams – eight in the high school division and three in the middle school division – competed at the event, testing bridges they had constructed from balsa wood, glue and a card sheet. The competition, which encourages critical thinking and teamwork, challenged students to design, build and test a unique bridge that would be evaluated on its creative design, load capacity and load efficiency.

“The challenge of Building Foundations for the Future is to design, construct and test the most effective road-based bridge out of balsa wood that meets competition evaluation criteria,” explained Megan Hart, RooBuilders program director and civil engineering adjunct assistant professor.

The goal of this new event is to cultivate interest and understanding of the civil engineering profession through interactive competition, making the real-world application more relevant to students.

“Model bridges are intended to be simplified versions of real-world bridges,” said Hart. “By providing students an opportunity for hands-on interaction from design to testing, they get a real taste of the exciting challenges civil engineers experience every day.”

Teams from Congress and Antioch middle schools and teams from Blue Springs, JC Harmon, Notre Dame de Sion, Park Hill South and Wyandotte high schools participated in the competition.

In the high school division, Park Hill South took first place with a total load of 62 pounds and a load efficiency of 433 percent.  They also took the Judge’s Choice award which is given for the bridge the judges felt was most outstanding in that division.  Wyandotte HS (WB Builders) took second place holding a total load of 30 pounds and a load efficiency of 325 percent, Wyandotte HS (Bulldogs) took third place with a load of 22 lbs and load efficiency of 301 percent.  They edged out Notre Dame de Sion by an overall score of one point.

In the middle school division, Congress Middle School held 20 pounds and took first place, Antioch Team 1 came in second, and Antioch Team 2 came in third.  Antioch Team 1 received the Judge’s Choice award.

The competition was kicked off in November with an on-campus modeling session, an experience that makes the RooBuilders competition unique among other similar bridge-building competitions. Middle and high school teams were invited to Flarsheim Hall to learn from SCE’s civil engineering faculty and students about bridge building concepts and create a computer model of their bridge.

This first annual event was a great success and the challenge to build foundations for the future will be issued again next year.  The event was hosted by the UMKC School of Computing and Engineering (SCE) and SCE’s Civil and Mechanical Engineering Department.  Judging was provided by HNTB and ASCE’s younger member group.

Four SCE Women Graduate Students Receive GAF Awards

SCE faculty demonstrating machinery to students

Four talented UMKC SCE women graduate students have been selected to receive UMKC Women’s Council Graduate Assistant Fund (GAF) Awards.  These competitive awards are based on the merits of their proposed projects and/or scholarly activities. Lean more about how their efforts will be making a difference.   

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SCE Students Take Part in Celebrating Engineer’s Week 2014


UMKC School of Computing and Engineering (SCE) student organizations and competition teams worked together with the SCE Student Council to ensure the 2014 E-Week activities at SCE over Feb. 16-22 chased any February blues away (even when temperatures dropped to 0 degree F). The line-up of events included the ACI/ASCE Concrete Bowling Competition, Chris Cake’s Pancake Breakfast, a STEM Career Fair, the E-Week Luncheon, SWE’s Mr. Engineer contest, the Baja Racing Team’s Pit Crew Challenge, the ACM Book Sale, the HPV Race, IEEE/Robotics Team’s Minute to Win It, an ACM/UPE sponsored Video Game Night, EWB Movie Night, the HKN/IEEE Egg Drop and the SCE Alumni Happy Hour.

While all of the week’s events were a great success, five consistently stand out as the most popular among SCE students, faculty and staff:

Tuesday’s Chris Cake Pancake Breakfast, sponsored by the SCE Student Council, features delicious sausage and pancakes cooked and flipped on a giant grill, complemented with orange juice and coffee. Hundreds of hungry SCE students, faculty and staff flocked to the buffet line.

Wednesday’s STEM Career Fair scheduled during E-Week each year provided SCE students an opportunity to meet recruiters from 35 of Kansas City’s top computer science and engineering firms. The Kansas City firms participating this year are on many computer science and engineering student’s “most-wanted employer” lists.

Thursday’s E-Week Luncheon is one of the largest gatherings of professional engineers you’ll likely see. Participating firms invited over 40 SCE students to join their tables, and every SCE engineering student that wanted to attend was welcomed. Companies hosting SCE students included Benesch, BHC Rhodes, Black & Veatch, City of Overland Park, Garver, GBA, HDR, HNTB, Honeywell, IEEE Kansas City Section, KCP&L, Sega, SKW-Inc., Terracon, and USACE. Additionally, 12 SCE faculty and staff attended. The luncheon is sponsored by the Western Chapter of the Missouri Society of Professional Engineers (MSPE) and the Eastern Chapter of the Kansas Society of Professional Engineers (KSPE). This year’s event was held at the downtown Marriott Hotel. Prior to the luncheon, guests enjoyed visiting exhibits showcasing engineering firms, engineering solutions and engineering education.

Friday’s Mr. Engineer Contest, sponsored by our own SCE Society of Women Engineers student chapter and the SCE Student Council, drew over 150 students, faculty, staff and alumni. SWE’s annual end of E-Week party destroys any and all engineer or computer science stereotypes that might come to mind by featuring the diverse talents of our “Mr. Engineer” contestants. Six worthy opponents showcased their talents – John Basin (ME), Huy Dao (CE), Karl Faust (ME), Cody Kaspzyk (ME), Aaron Rush (ECE) and Safeer Siddicky (Master’s ME). This year’s winner of the Mr. Engineer title is Cody Kaspzyk, whose imitation of faculty members had the crowd laughing to the point of tears. Congratulations, Cody!

The SCE E-Week Blood Drive, the final event of SCE’s E-Week celebration, commands a huge thank you to all of the participants and volunteers. This event, hosted by SCE’s Engineers Without Borders and Missouri Society of Professional Engineers student chapters, takes place annually during the week following National Engineer’s Week so students can rest up before participating. Final results are still being tallied and will be reported once the numbers are in.

Thank you to all who volunteered and attended events to make the week a success. SCE looks forward to more fun to come at E-Week 2015.

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