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High school students compete in a ‘bridge-breaking’ competition

Boy is building bridge from pasta.
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© Karen Quincy Loberg/VC Star
Donovan Rush prepares his team's spaghetti bridge to bear as much of a load as is structurally possible for the final week of the summer engineering program for local high school students at California Lutheran University in Thousand Oaks. © Karen Quincy Loberg/VC Star

Students in an Engineering Innovation program presented their final project this week at California Lutheran University — a bridge built with spaghetti and glue.

The 12 students in the program worked for about a week to design and build the spaghetti bridge, then tested it at the bridge-breaking concluding ceremony Thursday at CLU.

The bridges weighed a little over a half-pound and had to be able to hold a 2-pound basket. To test to see how strong the bridges were, the students added half-liter water bottles. Working in four groups, the students cautiously hooked the basket under their bridge and began placing water bottles.

James Martinez, engineering instructor at CLU, said the students in Engineering Innovation are the “future problem solvers” and the program offers them the ability “to be able to make creative solutions that have to do with the real world.”…

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