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UMD engineering students start a new tradition

UMD's Geo-Wall team constructs their mechanically-stabilized earth-retaining wall from construction paper during April's Regional GeoWall Competition at UMD's Swenson Civil Engineering Building.1 / 2
University of Minnesota-Twin Cities' GeoWall team prepares their boxes to be loaded by a 60-pound bucket of sand. 2 / 2

Engineering students from the University of Minnesota Duluth hosted the inaugural Midwest Regional GeoWall Competition in April in the Swenson Civil Engineering Building.

Teams of five from colleges across Minnesota and Wisconsin competed with their mechanically-stabilized earth-retaining walls constructed from 60-pound construction paper.

The boxes are approximately 18 inches wide, 18 inches deep and 36 inches long and are graded on how well they perform under a 60-pound bucket of sand and by the mass of their reinforcement and constructability.

Mankato (Minn.) State University Team One won the event by building the most efficient and best-designed wall. Mankato State Team Two placed second, UMD came in third and the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities team took last place.

UMD's team competed with the same geo-wall structure that earned them fifth place at the February American Society of Engineers Geo-Institute Convention in Phoenix. UMD team members are: (front row, from left) Ian Bradshaw and Garret Larson; and (back row, from left) Kyle Fritz, Miranda Anderson and team captain Bryce Hansen.

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