UL Lafayette engineering students shine in Traffic Bowl

Three civil engineering students will test their transportation and traffic knowledge in a quiz bowl-style competition against students from colleges in eight other states.

The Traffic Bowl team at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette will compete in the Institute of Transportation Engineers' district tournament from March 30 to April 2 in Greensboro, Ga., near Atlanta.

Graduate student Chuck LeBoeuf, team captain, and seniors Leia Kagawa and Paige Bourguard, earned the berth by beating teams from LSU and Mississippi State on Feb. 18. That contest was held at the Louisiana Department of Transportation headquarters in Baton Rouge.

At stake in the upcoming district competition will be a spot in the ITE Collegiate Traffic Bowl Grand Championship from Aug. 10-13 in Seattle.

First, UL Lafayette must defeat schools from Alabama, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee and Virginia in an event modeled on a popular TV game show.

“The format is similar to Jeopardy. The students get a chance to learn and have fun,” said Dr. Xiaoduan Sun, a civil engineering professor at UL Lafayette.

Traffic Bowl competition is open to members of ITE student chapters in the United States and Canada. Participants are quizzed about traffic engineering and control and transportation planning.

LeBoeuf, who earned a bachelors degree in civil engineering from the University in 2012, said Traffic Bowl also affords opportunities to network and travel.

The competition, however, can be intense.

“The questions get progressively harder,” he said.

Learn more about the Institute of Transportation Engineers at ite.org and the University's civil engineering program at civil.louisiana.edu

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