The Daily Item, Sunbury, PA


February 18, 2009

Students apply science to milk-and-cookie eating

LEWISBURG -- Four years of studying civil engineering served Jeff Ayres well as he prepared Tuesday to chug milk and gorge cookies.

"It's all about constructive management," said the Bucknell University senior, who was among 24 students and six professors competing in the milk-and-cookies-eating contest on campus as part of National Engineers Week. "The game plan was to get two cups down, then go after the cookies. I easily had five cookies in my mouth, maybe six."

More than 100 students and several professors spanning six engineering majors took a break from class for some fun competition, which included a textbook toss, a problem-solving math relay and an egg-drop contest. More than 625 students are enrolled in Bucknell's College of Engineering.

"This is a great week of fun activities and camaraderie for our engineering students and faculty," said Karen Marosi, Bucknell's associate dean of engineering. "It also helps to raise awareness about engineering here on campus."

Bucknell's events coincide with National Engineers Week, which is held nationally to increase public awareness of engineering and technology careers.

Ayres, enjoying his fourth celebration, said the outdoor fun-day is his favorite part of National Engineers Week, which also includes banner, poetry and noncomputer-generated art competitions, as well as a six-minute video production by the students that is shown Friday at the celebration dinner.

"Everybody thinks we hibernate in Dana (Engineering Building)," Ayres said. "This is a fun way to show the campus what we're about. It's also a good break from our studies."

Students also are raising money this week -- highlighted Thursday with a Money War competition -- to benefit the Public Library for Union County to purchase science and engineering books. The students have raised more than $1,500 in each of the past eight years for the library, Marosi said.

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