Antigonish, Nova Scotia, Canada

StFX engineering team wins at Atlantic Engineering Competition; alumnus August Wilkins supports students with competition fund, scholarship

February 2nd, 2018
The StFX student engineering team of Graeme Larsen (second left) and Megan Fudge (second right) placed first at the Atlantic Engineering Competition (AEC) and will represent the Atlantic region at the Canadian Engineering Competition at Ryerson University. Here they are pictured with AEC organizers Michael Cooper, VP Competitions, and Brandon Pye, one of the Re-engineering directors.

The StFX student engineering team of Megan Fudge and Graeme Larsen placed first at the Atlantic Engineering Competition held in St. John’s, NL Jan. 26-28 and will represent the Atlantic region at the Canadian Engineering Competition at Ryerson University on March 8-11.

The second year engineering students topped the Re-engineering category of the competition, hosted by the engineering department and students of Memorial University. This year’s theme was “Sustaining Today, Building Tomorrow.”

In all, six StFX engineering students attended the competition, with the help of a gracious donation from engineer and StFX alumnus August Wilkins, who in recognition of his proud association with StFX, has established the $2,500 August Wilkins Atlantic Engineering Competition Fund, which will fund costs associated with a StFX team participating in this annual competition. Mr. Wilkins has also funded the $2,500 August Wilkins Scholarship in Engineering to support full-time undergraduate students enrolled in the StFX engineering program.

The four-person team of second year students Emma Fudge and Ross Walker and first year students David Worth and Cameron deWinter competed in the Consulting category.

Emma Fudge, president of the StFX Engineering Society and a member of the StFX Consulting team that placed second at last year’s Canadian competition, says much planning and coordination were involved in the weeks leading up to the competition, where teams from universities across Atlantic Canada are exposed to real life engineering problems and meet top students from other schools.

“But it paid off and I am proud of the hard work that our competitors put into the competition. It was a challenging weekend, but I think I speak for all of us when I say that I enjoyed it immensely and am very grateful to have had the opportunity to represent StFX at the competition.” 

StFX engineering students who competed in the Atlantic Engineering Competition in St. John's, NL included, l-r, Ross Walker, Cameron deWinter, Emma Fudge, Graeme Larsen, Dave Worth and Megan Fudge

In the two categories StFX entered, the teams were presented with a problem along with specific goals to be focused on in the solution. Teams had about eight hours to work on a solution before presenting the next morning to a panel judges that included professors, researchers and industry professionals. 

In the Re-engineering competition, students are asked to redesign an existing product or improve its current functionality or adapt it for a new purpose. The initial design problem is revealed several days in advance, with the second stage presented the morning of the competition. Both had to be completed by the deadline, with a presentation and a short report for each. The cases focused on ice safety, and dealt with replacing the current method of measuring ice thickness, and with design modifications to snowmobiles to ensure safety in the case of ice breaking. 

The consulting competition challenges teams to devise a solution to a real-world problem by a hypothetical client. Their recommendations are submitted in report and presentation form and are examined by the panel of judges.

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