Skip to main content

Fifty University of Tennessee, Knoxville, undergraduate students from the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering prepared for most of the year to compete in the 2011 American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) Southeast Student Conference, and they took home first place overall.

UT Knoxville students with Tongji University students.

Hosted by Tennessee Tech University on March 25-26, these competitions are designed to explore student creative thinking by extending their academic knowledge to solving practical civil and environmental engineering problems.

“This is a significant accomplishment for our department and the college of engineering,” said Dayakar Penumadu, civil and environmental engineering department head. “We competed and successfully won against 26 participating universities such as Florida, Vanderbilt and Auburn.”

The event takes place every year and the last time UT Knoxville brought home the first place overall trophy was in 2005. The UT Knoxville conference chair is Marianne Hutson and the faculty advisor is John Ma.

UT Knoxville’s steel bridge team, led by Chris Haynes and Matt Hart, won third place overall and will be competing in Nationals at Texas A&M on May 20-21. Awards in steel bridge subcategories include second in construction speed and third in bridge economy.

Each year, UT Knoxville invites Tongji University (Shanghai, China) to compete in the competition, who took home third place overall at the event. Baoshan Huang, Lee Han, Greg Reed and John Ma were instrumental in developing this international partnership with Tongji over the past five years.

Following is a list of individual UT Knoxville awards with the respective captains:

• Concrete Cubes – 1st: Patrick O’leary

• Mystery Competition – 1st: Caleb Williams

• Environmental Competition – 1st: Melissa Mckenzie and Reese Deblois

• Surveying Competition – 2nd: Logan Johnson

• T-shirt Design – 2nd: Amanda Cruzen

• Transportation Competition – 2nd: Wesley Stokes

For more information on ASCE, visit