It was the first day of classes in the first semester of
2004. The hallways at the University of Calgary were quiet
and peaceful, almost serene.
BY ALAN MARTIN
University of Calgary
Then the engineers came out.
Eng Week 2004 started on Monday, Jan. 12, with a boisterous
parade through the engineering building – audible even
in the basement. This set the stage for the annual weeklong
event that is Engg Week (a.k.a. Engineering Week).
The five departments – electrical, chemical, civil,
mechanical and geomatics engineering – compete each
year for honour, glory and points, with each group trying
to outdo all the others and win the coveted title of Winners
of Engg Week.
Each department has a theme. This year’s themes are
Nightmare on Chem Street (chemical), the People’s Democratic
Republic of Civil (civil), MarGeo Brothers (geomatics), Made
in Mechxico (mechanical) and ZOOBAR (electrical engineering,
brief digression on why electrical engineering is known
as Zoo. Once upon a time a professor went into the electrical
homeroom to teach a class and made the comment, “It’s
like a bloody zoo in here!” The name just stuck.
|The ZOOBAR banner is proudly on display.
There are far too many events during Engg Week to list here,
but I will describe some of them.
The Scavenger Hunt sends the departments out to scrounge
for strange things, such as a working Apple IIe or Commodore
64 computer, and not-so-strange things, such as a charity
item for the Calgary Women’s Shelter and lunch for
The Key Clue event is one of the most contested. Clues are
given out every day of Engg Week, and the department teams,
usually at least two or three dedicated people, spend the
week doing tasks and trying to solve clues in order to find
the key. It’s hidden somewhere in Calgary, and false
keys are nestled away to throw the teams off, making the
game even more challenging.
Snow sculptures are the longest lasting evidence of Engg
Week. How long they last depends on the weather (which in
Calgary means five minutes, five months or anywhere in between).
Each department makes a snow sculpture and spiffs it up with
biodegradable paints. The most impressive sculpture wins.
Civil hopes to claim its second consecutive Engg Week victory.
Since civil also won the Frosh Week event in September,
it would be all the sweeter.
But the other departments have their own plans.
Electrical hopes to end its drought of Engg Week victories.
Mechanical hopes for some payback after coming in second
during last year’s Engg Week. Geomatics and chemical
also want the win, of course.
But at the end of the day, everyone knows it’s all
about fun. And charity.
Engg Week always raises money for a specific charity, and
last year the Calgary Women’s Emergency Shelter received
just over $5,000 from the engineers.
This year’s charity is the Children’s Wish Foundation.
The foundation grants a favourite wish to a child afflicted
with a high-risk, life threatening illness. These wishes
can be anything from a trip to Disneyland to a laptop to
the perfect puppy.
The Children’s Wish Foundation of Canada was founded
in 1984, and since then the Alberta and Northwest Territories
chapter alone has granted 640 wishes. This is a very worthy
organization, and the U of C engineering students are proud
to support it.
For more information about this charity, visit www.childrenswish.ca.
As of The PEGG’s deadline, Engg Week is still going
on. With several of the biggest events to come, including
the scavenger hunt and Key Clue, victory is still up for
Check back next month for the final results!