New engineering competition

By Michael Grondin

The first ever Canadian-hosted international engineering competition will take place at the University of Calgary from Sept. 11-15.

The Shell International Engineering Competition will bring the brightest minds from top engineering schools around the world to showcase unique solutions to environmental issues and find new energy delivery strategies.

The competition was founded by the Canadian Federation of Engineering Students, Shell Canada and Beakerhead. 

Beakerhead is a program that hosts an annual arts and science exhibition in Calgary. 

At an announcement on May 28, Daily Planet co-host and co-founder of Beakerhead Jay Ingram expressed excitement for the new international competion.

“Innovation and creativity are inextricably linked — you can’t have either one without the other,” said Ingram. “We all — Beakerhead, Shell, engineering students and the citizens of Calgary — should be looking forward to this.”

U of C engineering alumnus and competition operations lead Sean Heisler said the event will provide a unique opportunity for engineering students looking to expand their classroom knowledge.

“The experience of a competition is hard to describe,” said Heisler. “As a student, you get extracted from your normal engineering day, you don’t have assignments or midterms, and you head out to some new school you haven’t been to before for three or four days [for the competition],” said Heisler.

He added that when representatives from many schools come together, the pond of innovation grows and an international competition will be beneficial to take young engineers to the next level.

“What we want to do is take that pond and make it one step bigger,” he said. “Take the top in Canada and put them against the top in the United States and the top in Europe and see what new solutions come out of these top minds.”

Heisler said the competition will help encourage students to explore new ideas.

“We want to make sure that engineering students feel they are ready to take that next step and have another opportunity to prove everything that engineers can do for society,” he said.

Manager of technology development at Shell Canada in Calgary Rob Birkholz said that the pursuit of sustainability is an important part of the competition.

“We are about the continuous pursuit of better and more sustainable ways to deliver energy. That’s why we champion open innovation and work together with partners far beyond the boundaries of our industry,” said 

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