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Hungarian young engineer’s thesis paves the way for future success

A project looking into the design of a timber footbridge in Prague has scooped ICE Hungary’s first Young Civil Engineer Final Thesis Award.

Zsófia Varga, who wrote the winning thesis, went head to head with four other young engineers in the final assessment stage of the awards, which were presented by Hamish Douglas, ICE Council Member for Europe; Gábor Szőllősy, General Secretary Hungarian Chamber of Engineers and Michael Apted, ICE Hungary representative.

Other projects entered ranged from cavern spacing in granitic rock to the feasibility of a tram-train link in Budapest, but the winning thesis which designed two types of footbridge for comparison − an arch and a cable stayed bridge − attracted the judges’ attention.

It included consideration of construction methods, geotechnical conditions and foundation design as well as an outline construction method statement and was considered the considered to be the “most rounded” entry.

Michael Apted, ICE Hungary representative, said: “We had five very good, diverse and well presented entries, each representing a lot of research and thought, and it was difficult to compare them.

Logical presentation

“The timber footbridge thesis was arguably the most logically and clearly presented, and has a very good and well illustrated basic research section which would form a good basic “beginner’s” guide to timber footbridges.”

Hamish Douglas, ICE Council Member for Europe added that the enthusiasm of the participants was “unmistakable and quality of their PowerPoint synopses excellent”.

“They are also to be especially commended for the effort they put into preparing the papers in English.” he added.

Winner Zsófia Varga, who was awarded one year free graduate membership of both the ICE and the Hungarian Chamber of Engineers, said: “It was a great honour to have been chosen as the winner − I still cannot believe it. I am really excited about the prize and cannot wait to be an ICE graduate member.”

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