By Jiawei Chen
Every year, National Engineers Week is celebrated throughout the United States during the week of February 17th to February 23rd, which is also known as Presidents Week. Besides Engineers Week and Presidents Week, this week is also known as the week of Mid-Winter recess for high school students around the country, which is why Engineers Week has never been celebrated at Tech.
In 2012, Nicole Culella, the Assistant Principal of Engineering, decided it was time for a change. Culella, who graduated from Cooper Union, was the chairwoman of National Engineers Week events at her college for five years.
“I wanted to bring that same tradition to Tech,” she sadi.
Culella worked together with the principal Randy Asher to create an official Engineers Week in the school. This year, they decided on the week of February 25th to March 1st to hold the festivities, which included the Egg Drop Contest, the NYU-Poly Engineering Workshop, The Elocution of Engineering Workshop, an engineering Professional Panel, and the highly anticipated Cardboard Boat Regatta competition.
The Egg Drop Contest, which took place on Monday, February 25th, allowed students to form teams to engineer devices that would prevent an egg from breaking when dropped from the seventh floor cafeteria. On Tuesday, February 26th, the NYU-POLY Engineering Workshop in the fifth floor library engaged Tech students and exposed them to different types of engineering, accomplished by hands-on activities and handouts for participating students.
The Elocution of Engineering Workshop, which took place in the library on Wednesday, February 27th, was conducted by Marc Williams, the Assistant Principal of English. The goal of this workshop was to “help students craft the skills necessary to elevate their careers in engineering.”
The Professional Panel, which took place on Thursday, February 28th, offered students the opportunity to ask any questions they had to engineering professionals about their careers and studies.
The Cardboard Boat Regatta competition, which was most anticipated by students, took place on the last day of Engineers Week in the swimming pool. The goal of this competition was for students to exhibit their engineering skills by designing and creating cardboard canoes based on specific constraints. Students tested their designs in the pool and competed against other teams. Judges decided on a 1st place winner, a 2nd place winner, and a 3rd place winner. There was also a Spirit Award, an award for the most spirited team, and the Titanic Award, an award that is given to the team with the boat that sinks in the “most spectacular fashion.”
“It was a fun experience for me,” Christopher Chiarovano, a member of the third place team, remarked. “What I liked most about it was turning some cardboard scraps into a pretty good looking canoe and being able to enter it in a race.”
When asked about his opinions on Engineers Week at Tech, Chiarovano replied, “It’s a great experience for anyone who is thinking about becoming an engineer. It provides wonderful insight into what the engineering world is truly like.”
Overall, many would say that Brooklyn Tech’s second annual Engineers Week was once again a huge success. The students had fun and learned many valuable lessons in the field of engineering, while engineering teachers and assistant principals got their point across. Engineers Week has become an annual tradition and may soon become a staple here at Tech.