First year engineering student Kim Yeats was an integral member of the 2005 University of Calgary Great Northern Concrete Toboggan Race Team. As part of the Western Canadian Engineering Competition 2005, Yeats and a team of U of C engineers designed and built a toboggan with concrete runners which successfully slid down the hill at Canada Olympic Park.
Now in her second year as a geomatics engineer, Yeats is back, along with 200 engineers from 10 universities across Western Canada who will gather at U of C to put their engineering know-how to the test at the WCEC 2006.
The competition, which runs Jan. 18-21, will see students compete in six categories including Junior Team Design, Senior Team Design, Consulting Design, Innovative Design, Communications and Debate. Judges will choose the top two competitors in each division to represent Western Canada at the Canada Engineering Competition in Montreal.
According to WCEC 2006 Vice-President Communications Kat Cardiff, the competition appeals to a wide range of students.
"It's not just for engineers, it provides solutions to problems in other faculties like environmental issues, and the debate isn't even engineering topics," she said. "In the Innovation and Design, competitors choose a problem they've encountered in real life and solve it. It's like a science fair."
Judges for each competition are U of C professors, alumni and industry members, which will allow students to showcase their genius for potential employers.
"I think its great for networking and it makes me not nervous, but more conscious of what I'm saying," said Yeats, who will be competing in the Junior Design category.