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UT Tyler Concrete Canoe Team Repeats as Regional Champion

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April 5, 2013

Media Contact:  Hannah Buchanan
Public Affairs Specialist
Marketing and Communications
The University of Texas at Tyler
903.565.5769 or 903.539.7196 (cell)

April 5, 2013

The University of Texas at Tyler won the 2013 American Society of Civil Engineering Texas-Mexico Regional Concrete Canoe Competition held in Corpus Christi, Dr. James Nelson, College of Engineering and Computer Science dean, announced.

With this year’s canoe entry, “Chip Shot,” the UT Tyler ASCE Student Chapter placed first overall in competition out of 14 teams, besting the University of Houston, UT Austin, Texas A&M University, Rice University, Texas Tech University and UT El Paso.

This is UT Tyler’s second consecutive overall win and third first place finish in six years at regionals.

At the annual event, participants build canoes with concrete and are judged in four categories: technical design report, oral design presentation, canoe final product and racing.

“Over the past few years, the students have worked not only to improve their canoe design, concrete formula and their paddling skills, but they have also been innovative with their analysis and display of the canoe. This year they took their efforts to the next level,” said Dr. Michael McGinnis, faculty adviser.

The UT Tyler team placed first in oral presentation and overall canoe quality as well as second for their technical design report. They also accumulated the most points in the racing events by finishing first in the men’s sprint and co-ed sprint race, second in the women’s sprint races and third in the women’s and men’s endurance races.

UT Tyler will advance to nationals this summer at the University of Illinois – Urbana Champaign. Last year, the team placed in the top 15 at the ASCE National Concrete Canoe Competition.

“I could not be prouder of the accomplishments of our students in the short time the department and students chapter has been in existence. They are a remarkable group of young men and women,” Nelson added.

Team captains are Marco Weidmer of Hallsville and Ryan Borhani of Longview.

Other student members of the 2013 team are:

Seniors: Michael Lisk of Houston, Clayton Carroll of Whitehouse, Tevin Dial of Tyler, Jennifer King of Victoria, Alex McMillan of Palestine, Lee Radley of Tyler, Tyler Richards of Tyler, Austin Sparks of Tyler, Matt Taylor of Terrell, Tyler Wacker of Bay City and Danica Weddle of Midland.

Juniors: Brad Christopher of Reklaw, Erin Hostetler of Austin, Hayden Vanhoose of Iowa, Kory Wilkinson of Wolfe City and Bobby Fuller of Longview.

Sophomores: Robert Atwell of Houston, Callie Dirickson of Mesquite and Jane Weidmer of Hallsville.

McGinnis and Justin Smith, UT Tyler lecturer in construction management and civil engineering, also attended the competition in support of the team.

Currently serving more than 130 students, the UT Tyler Department of Civil Engineering offers both bachelor of science and master of science in civil engineering degrees.

For more information, call 903.566.7273.

One of the 15 campuses of the UT System, UT Tyler offers excellence in teaching, research, artistic performance and community service. More than 80 undergraduate and graduate degree programs are available at UT Tyler, which has an enrollment of almost 7,000 high-ability students at its campuses in Tyler, Longview and Palestine.
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