WSU Concrete Canoe Wins Competition, Heads to Nationals

PULLMAN, Wash. — “The Invicid Extreme,” a concrete canoe constructed by Washington State University civil engineering students, was the winning entry in the regional concrete canoe competition of the American Society of Civil Engineers last weekend in Pocatello, Idaho. The team will head to the national competition June 14-16 in San Diego.

The students were judged on the canoe’s speed in races and its overall appearance and durability, their technical paper, an oral presentation and a display. While students from other schools made standard PowerPoint presentations, the WSU students won first place for their presentation, in which students Ian Eikanas of Goldendale, Jeff Ensor of Davenport and Suzanne Dotchin of Everett performed a skit, trying to sell their concrete canoe to a sports enthusiast looking for a new extreme sport.

“As one judge said, ‘It was either going to go ‘fphlirp’ (with his thumb pointed down) or win everyone over’ — and the WSU students did the latter,” said Ken Fridley, civil and environmental engineering professor and adviser to the ASCE WSU student chapter.

Team co-captains are juniors Eikanas and Tony Vader of Yacolt. Invicid is a fluid mechanics term for frictionless flow.

The WSU students also brought home the traveling trophy for the ASCE conference. Student Janet Snedecor of Pullman won third place for her technical paper presentation. Her paper was based on undergraduate research she is conducting under mentor Frank Loge, assistant professor in civil and environmental engineering.

“Our student leaders served as excellent ambassadors for WSU and showed their professionalism throughout the competition,” said Fridley.

Canoe photos are available by contacting the ASCE office, 509/335-6957.