Mathematics-Physics High School SMILE Meeting
15 February 2000
Notes Prepared by Earl Zwicker

We had the 26th Annual Chicago Regional Bridge Building Contest, held in the auditorium of the HUB; Physics and math at work, demonstrated by the students who had designed, constructed, and now tested their bridges to destruction. Here are the winners, which will also be found at

Rank Student School Mass Held (kg) Eff
First: Tia Yong Zahn Curie Metro HS 55.00 2568.9
Second: Justine Chen Whitney Young HS 44.00 2150.5
Third: Huan Mei Curie Metro HS 32.00 1623.5
Fourth: Michael Filinowicz Curie Metro HS 30.00 1544.8

Rank Student School Mass Held (kg) Eff
First: James Ciston Lamont HS 44.00 2292.9
Second: Deborah Kim Naperville Central 24.00 2051.3
Third: Hilary Mushier Homewood-Flossmoor 44.00 1980.2
Fourth: Eric Gutierrez Joliet Central HS 36.00 1908.8

Rank Student School Mass Held (kg) Eff
First: Chris Luedtke Wheaton-Warr So 48.00 2749.1
Second: Robert Schultz Glenbard South 54.00 2483.9
Third: Chris Hopkins Wheaton-Warr 41.00 1750.6
Fourth: Peter Koziol Loyola Academy 42.00 1683.4

First and second place winners will receive round trip tickets to the International Contest to be held in Scranton, PA on May 6 2000. In addition, they had first choice among three prizes: a $35 gift certificate to Radio Shack, a Ball Clock, or that remarkable optical illusion called Mirage. Third place received what was left. All received Bridge Contest T-shirts.

All winners received invitations to the Engineering Week Banquet thanks to Chief Judge George Krupa.

Each of the schools having winners receive an elegant trophy for display. In February, all participating schools should receive - via the US mail (or via the up-coming ISPP meeting) - pictures of their students who participated, and all students will receive a Certificate of Merit, with special Certificates for winners. All students have already received an impressive medallion with red-white-blue ribbon. These are worn around the neck to identify them as participants within their schools and/or physics classes. Each also received a special coffee mug, thanks to the Illinois Engineers Council. A special "traveling" Supertrophy was awarded to Curie Metro High School thanks to Tia Yong Zahn, whose bridge carried the greatest load (55 kg).

A total of 142 bridges were tested by students from 43 city and suburban high schools at this 26th Annual Contest.

A BIG THANK YOU!! the Committee (Bill Blunk, Ann Brandon, Roy Coleman, Joel Hofslund, Tom Jensen, George Krupa, Eduardo de Santiago, Carlo Segre, Bill Shanks, Lee Slick, Jim Stankevitz, Thomas Torres, Earl Zwicker) who have made it all possible by giving of their talent and time. Many have served since the inception of the contest - for 26 years now!

Don't miss the next meeting! SEE YOU THERE!