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Women Help Paddle Clarkson Concrete Canoe To Fifth-place Regional Finish

The women of Clarkson University’s Concrete Canoe Team outdistanced the competition, pacing a fifth-place overall showing at a regional collegiate competition hosted recently by Union College in Schenectady, N.Y.

Concrete Canoe is an annual intercollegiate competition sponsored by the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) and Master Builders Inc. student teams must design, build and race working canoes made mostly of concrete. In addition, student teams must also write a design paper and deliver an oral presentation on their entries.

Clarkson’s Concrete Canoe Team is made up entirely of civil and environmental engineering majors.

Jennifer L. Caufield ’02 (Pulaski, N.Y.) and Rachel S. Kaschak ’01 (Cropseyville, N.Y.), captured the women’s distance race in a time of 7:42.

“Jenn and I were very excited to have won the endurance race.  We had set our minds on getting first place,” says Kaschak.  “I would have to attribute our success in placing first in endurance to good team work.  Jenn and I make a great team and we're really looking forward to working together again next year.”

 “We really wanted to win, and got out there and paddled as best we could, and concentrated on the turns, which were by far the most difficult,” added Caulfield. “We knew the time we had to beat and could hear our entire team cheering even from the other end of the pond.”

In the sprint event, the team of Christina M. Graham ’00 (Orono, Maine) and Heidi A. Trodler ’00 (Dolgeville, N.Y.) finished third.

On the men’s side, Clarkson’s best showing was a third-place finish in the distance event.  Team captain Brian C. Dow ’00 (Poughkeepsie, N.Y.), William C. “B.J.”  Farrell III ’01 (Hampton, N.J.), Jared A. Ferber ’03 (Edison, N.J.), James C. “Jake” Hohmann ’01 (Honeoye, N.Y.), Russell B. Holt ’01 (Chelmsford, Mass.) and Sean W. Miller ’02 (Corfu, N.Y.) made up the men’s squad.

In the co-ed sprint race, Clarkson placed 4th.

“The competition was a lot of fun,” said Farrell.  “It was a great learning experience, we all had a good time, and we did reasonably well.”

Concrete Canoe is a part of Clarkson University's SPEED (Student Projects for Engineering Experience and Design) Program.  SPEED promotes project-based learning opportunities by providing engineering design opportunities for Clarkson students through 16 projects.  The Educational Partnership Program provides graduate students in business with real-world project management experience while working with area elementary, junior-high and high-school students.  SPEED is supported by grants from General Electric, Alcoa, Goodyear and Nestlé.

[News directors and editors: For more information, contact Annie Harrison, Director of Media Relations, at 315-268-6764 or]

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