DelDOT Bridge Contest

Conrad Schools, Sanford Middle win DelDOT bridge building contest

Staff WriterEducation, Headlines

DelDOT Bridge Contest

Conrad Schools of Science and Sanford Middle School have won the Delaware Department of Transportation’s third annual Delaware Bridge Design Competition.

The hands-on engineering competition is aimed at engaging students interested in the math, science, and engineering fields. 

The program is designed to encourage middle school and high school students to address real-world problems and inspire them to consider careers in transportation and civil engineering. 

Students use Computer Aided Drafting (CAD) and 3-D modeling software to design and detail plans for a specified bridge type. 

Competitors use their design to create a balsa wood model that is weighed and load-tested to develop a strength-to-weight ratio for the structure. 

Participants also develop proposals and presentations that outline their designs which professionals in Delaware’s engineering community review. 

The Delaware Bridge Design Competition and all associated software and materials are provided for free to all participating schools.

“The Bridge Design Competition has been a terrific way for students across the state to take what they are learning in school and apply it to a real-world scenario,” said Transportation Secretary Nicole Majeski. “We hope this competition contributes to students’ interest in engineering careers and we look forward to returning to an in-person event next year.” 

The 2022 competition involved 60 teams from 11 schools throughout Delaware, including Caravel Academy, Conrad Schools of Science, Delmarva Christian High School, McKean High School, M.O.T. Charter High School, Smyrna High School, Sussex Academy of Arts and Science, Polytech High School, Tatnall School, Beacon Middle School, and Sanford School. 

The 2022 first place winner for the high school division of the competition is “Three of a Kind” from Conrad School of Sciences. 

From the middle school division, “The Truss Crushers” from the Sanford School won first place. 

As part of the competition, the students are tasked with designing a specific type of truss bridge that offers high load capabilities and an economical weight. 

Students are tasked with documenting their design decisions and progress in the form of a proposal and presentation. All three of these components are accounted for in the teams’ final scores.  

Each first place team earned $1,500 for winning the top prize. 

Each second place and third place team earned $900 and $750 respectively. 

All prize money for the competition was awarded by Bridges to a Brighter Future, a local non-profit organization. 

The top three teams from the high school and middle school divisions will also receive an award plaque for their school and individual trophies for each competitor. 

Special cash awards for the top teams in the categories of Best Team Name, Best Team Logo, Best Design Drawings, and Bridge Aesthetics were awarded by Bridges to a Brighter Future. 

The official results are as follows:

  • High School
      • First place – Three of a Kind – Conrad Schools of Science
        • Sayra Lopez, Emily Lopez, Joyce Sosa
      • Second place – Funky Monkeys – McKean High School
        • Jesus Gasca, Gustavo Saldivar, Ian Smith
      • Third place – In God We Truss – Smyrna High School
        • Khang Nguyen, Jack Riley, Westen Shreckengost
  • Middle School
    • First place – The Truss Crushers – The Sanford School 
      • Camille Opher, Cooper Grundner
    • Second place – Beacon Builders – Beacon Middle School
      • Caleb Clark, Katy Kralevich, Addison Hilton
    • Third place – Cape Crusaders – Beacon Middle School
      • Alex Munchie, Eli Haschemeyer, Dean Brockway
  • Best Team Name: The Three Musketeers and Seth Conrad Schools of Science
  • Best Team Logo: Beaver Boys Conrad Schools of Science
  • Best Design Drawings: M.O.T. Charter Bridge Builders 1 M.O.T. Charter High School
  • Most Aesthetically Pleasing Bridge: In God We Truss Smyrna High School

Since its inception, the Delaware Bridge Design Competition has seen over 140 teams and over 400 students compete in this event. 

More information can be found at this link.

This story was originally published by the Delaware Department of Transportation. It has been edited for clarity.

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