Asides

Announcing Our First Sponsor for 2014-15: Patrick Lumber Company

We’re pleased to announce our first sponsor for the 2014-15 academic year: Patrick Lumber Company. Patrick Lumber is a lumber distributor, exporter, and re-manufacturer specializing in Vertical Grain Doug Fir, Western Red Cedar, Southern Yellow Pine, Hemlock, and more since 1915. As a Cardinal and Gold Sponsor, they will provide valuable funding to support our Concrete Canoe and Steel Bridge projects and our USC team at the 2015 ASCE Pacific Southwest Conference.

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Interested in becoming a sponsor? Learn more at our sponsorship page.

 

Steel Bridge Update

Our Steel Bridge team is working hard to finish building their top-secret design by March 1st. This will allow plenty of time to tweak and finish the bridge, as well as practicing assembly for the competition. We’re excited for PSWC 2014 and will be selecting our competition team in the next few weeks.

We can always use more help; please email steelbridge@uscasce.com to join our mailing list!

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PSWC 2014 Planning Underway

Our USC ASCE team for PSWC 2014 has been finalized. We’ll be bringing 43 of our members to San Diego State University from April 2-6 to compete against 17 other universities in concrete canoe, steel bridge, environmental, geotechnical, surveying, technical paper, concrete bowling, scavenger hunt, sports teams, and several other events.

We’re finalizing details of our travel plans now, while also organizing the smaller competition teams. Once we have all of individual schedules and teams filled out, team captains will coordinate meetings/practices to prepare for victory!

Our design teams can always use more help to design and build the concrete canoe, steel bridge, water treatment system, and geowall. Even if you aren’t attending PSWC this year, you can make a big impact on our teams and help propel them to win!

Check out our calendars for updates on all of our meeting times and info for getting involved!

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Website Redesign

We’ve launched a visual redesign of our website, addressing several concerns about our site’s usability that came up in our Fall 2013 survey.

Previously, we used a custom child theme of the Twenty Thirteen WordPress theme. Now,  we’re using Twenty Fourteen, with the Fourteen Colors plugin.

The new design features images more prominently and boldly (see the design team pages, for example, Concrete Canoe). It’s higher contrast and more readable. And most importantly, it provides several tools for us to highlight the most important content, for example, through the new sidebar on the left of the screen.

Continuing our commitment to open source software, I contributed heavily to the development of Twenty Fourteen, so that we could make it better for both our uses at USC ASCE, and for thousands of other sites worldwide.

We hope you like our new design!

EBoard Secret Santa

EBoard Secret Santa

Our board celebrated its last meeting of the semester with a secret santa gift exchange! After everyone opened their gifts, each person had to guess who gave it to them, which was harder than you’d think given the size of our board.

EBoard Secret Santa gift circle results

Overall this was a great way to end our semester. A lot of work goes into organizing everything for ASCE and we’ve already started getting ready for an exciting spring semester. Through our weekly 9pm board meetings, as well as working outside of the meetings, our board has put in a terrific effort this semester; none of our events would be possible without everyone’s dedication & commitment to making USC ASCE awesome!

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ASCE MLAB Annual Officer Installation & Awards Dinner Recap

Last Friday, October 18, 2013, 4 of our E-Board members attended the ASCE Metropolitan Los Angeles Branch (MLAB) Annual Officer Installation & Awards Dinner at the LA City Hall. At the event, incoming officers for the Branch, YMF, and student chapter (including 4 USC ASCE officers) were installed by Region 9 Governor Jay Higgins.  At the dinner, they also awarded various projects and individuals that “demonstrated excellence in professional achievements this past year.”  We were able to meet and chat with different professionals as well as learn about the projects that were honored.

USC ASCE Members and ASCE Region 9 Governor Jay Higgins

MLAB, MLAB YMF, and LA Section events are great opportunities to meet professionals and other students, and to learn more about civil and environmental engineering in practice.  We will continue to advertise their events and hope that you will join us at the next event.  Be sure to attend the MLAB YMF Student Round-Up, scheduled for 6:30pm on 11/7/13 in KAP 146 to learn more about ASCE after college and what resources are available to us.  We have also scheduled a resume workshop at THH 114 at 6:00pm.  MLAB YMF members will be here to give us helpful tips on what to include and not include in our resume.

For more information regarding these events, please check out our newsletter or send us an email.  Looking forward to seeing you at these upcoming events!

Last Minute PSWC Prep

Everyone’s finishing up last minute details for PSWC 2013, which starts tomorrow. Canoe team wrapped up aesthetics, our display board and engineer’s notebook. But—in a concrete canoe first—we had to make one last batch of concrete. But don’t worry, it was just to re-finish the cross section. It would never work to put new concrete on the canoe this late in the game. Steel bridge team finished up bridge painting and did their display board tonight. And the environmental team finished strategizing for their 8am Thursday competition, while other team members created the display board and other documentation. Meanwhile, our e-board finished orchestrating all of the logistics for the conference (since we’re hosting). Everything’s coming into place, and we’ll be back at it bright and early (in like 4 hours) to get everything for the first day of competition.