The competition will be held May 26-29 on PSU property located east of Rouse Street near the Student Recreation Center and the Kansas Polymer Research Center. PSU is one of three locations that will host baja competitions in 2011 - other sites include Birmingham, Ala., and Peoria, Ill.
It has been about 10 years since a Baja SAE competition was held in the state of Kansas (a few competitions were held at Kansas State University in the late 1990s/early 2000s). Automotive Technology Professor Trent Lindbloom, who oversees PSU's baja program, said the school was selected because of its optimal centralized location, its strength in involvement with SAE, as well as its available resources that make hosting an event of this magnitude possible.
"We could not be more thrilled that we were selected as a competition site," said Lindbloom, who was a founding member of PSU's first baja team. "This will be an incredible amount of work over the next several months, but the College of Technology is up to the challenge. We are using this competition as an educational experience for students from every department."
With hundreds of students and faculty involved in the competition, there is much work to be done. Construction students will begin by cutting an access road to the property off Centennial Road. Once the site is accessible, they will perform surveying and topography of the property. Students will then clear land; design, build, and test the tracks; and maintain the tracks during the four-day competition.
Graphics and Imaging students will create banners, apparel, and signage for the event. Automotive students will be busy this year fundraising and building PSU's competing baja vehicles. Along with students from engineering technology as well as technology and workforce learning, they will also serve as event volunteers.
College of Technology Dean Bruce Dallman said the event will provide a rare opportunity to showcase the College of Technology, university, and community.
"We have a longstanding tradition of involvement with our competitors, so to be able to have this event here is wonderful," he said. "What more could we ask for?"
©2011 Pittsburg State University