STUDENTS AND school children have been offered the chance to win full sponsorship of their civil engineering education by structures firm John Allen Consulting.
The prize was up for grabs for over 100 GCSE and A-level students who last week competed in the firm's bridge design competition at the BBC Tomorrow's World Roadshow in London.
The top prize includes full sponsorship for their civil engineering education, through GCSE, A-level and degree, and on to full chartered status. A job with John Allen is assured. The winner was expected to be announced later this week.
In the process they have had their preconceptions of the work of civil engineers firmly challenged, explained John Allen chairman John Allen.
'We as an industry need to build on the feeling that engineers aren't people who knock up buildings under the supervision of architects.
'It is a case of re-educating the entire country on who we are and what we achieve, ' said Allen, 'and it should not be just us who are doing it.'
The competitors used an interactive computer simulation designed by the firm.
Competitors were presented with a pre-designed bridge and given four minutes to identify savings by removing redundant members and reducing member sizes. The effect of removing members was demonstrated graphically by the effects of a lorry crossing the bridge. The winner will be chosen after the best competitors have been interviewed.