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UB-ASCE steel bridge team places fifth overall in nationals

UB ASCE steel bridge team members and advisors Todd Snyder and John Gast traveled to Provo, Utah, in May to compete in the 2016 National Steel Bridge Competition.

by Sarah D'Iorio

Published June 10, 2016

“The team's success correlates with the increased passion and dedication that each member has for this competition and this team.”
Ryan O'Malley, Class of 2016
BS, Civil Engineering

The University at Buffalo’s American Society of Civil Engineers (UB-ASCE) Student Chapter continues to rank as one of the highest performing teams in the National Student Steel Bridge Competition (NSSBC), bringing home fifth place overall in the 2016 competition.

This is the third year in a row the UB team has finished in the top ten. The team finished in 10th place overall in 2014 and in fourth place overall in 2015.

Of the roughly 223 teams that competed at regional competitions, 48 schools qualified to advance to the national competition held at Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah on May 27-28, where they displayed their skills in steel design, steel fabrication, and teamwork.

In addition to finishing in the top five overall, UB also received third place in lightness and fourth place in construction economy.

Ryan O’Malley, a longstanding steel bridge team member who recently graduated with his BS in Civil Engineering, said that the entire team is thrilled at having placed in the top five for the second year in a row.

“The team's success correlates with the increased passion and dedication that each member has for this competition and this team,” said O’Malley.

The team is also very proud of the fact that it took first at the ASCE Upstate New York Regional Student Conference, which was hosted by UB in April. UB-ASCE's concrete canoe team, which placed second overall in regionals, competes at the 2016 National Concrete Canoe Competition on June 9-11 at the University of Texas at Tyler. 

O'Malley said that the steel bridge team and the UB-ASCE Student Chapter have greatly enriched his time at UB and helped prepare him to enter the field civil engineering.

“This organization not only provides us with three year-long design projects—steel bridge, concrete canoe, and seismic design—that allow us to apply the principles that we learn in the classroom to a tangible project, but it also builds a platform that allows us to be successful difference makers in civil engineering,” he said.

Members of the 2015-2016 UB-ASCE steel bridge team included the following students: Kyle Alberts, Nick Belmonte, Nathan Busch, Matthew Chinea, Cody Coonradt, Byron Correa, Michael Durant, Neil Ferguson, Tyler Garrity, Rebecca Hansen, Mitchell Hares, Devon Kinsman, Charles LaMendola, Maria Camila Lopez, Andrew Machaby, Bryce Mazurowski, James McKeehan, Matthew Minotti, Trevor Morgan, Wil Nagengast, Andrea Oaks, Ryan O'Malley, Andrei Shatalov, Daniil Tatarevich, Shawn Tennity, Augusto Torezan, Rushil Verma, Anthony Williams, and Gaurav Zawar. Advisors included John Gast and Todd Snyder.

Gast, who has served as an industry advisor for the the UB steel bridge team for six years now, says his role is to share his passion and knowledge of engineering with the students in order to help them reach their goals. 

“The young men and women involved with the steel bridge team are the cream of the crop and it’s their work and dedication that motivates me to be and stay involved,” Gast said.

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