MANCHESTER - What does it take to be an engineer? What is a responsible bid? How is Manchester's bridge similar to the Michigan project? Sixth, seventh and eighth grade students will tackle town utility system and engineering issues in classes Sept. 24 - 27 at MEMS.

Town officials along with representatives of Schultz Construction and FairPoint Communications will offer insights and instruction on the Roundabout project currently underway in Manchester. Students have prepared questions to ask the officials and managers as part of the classroom experience.

Leading off the program will be John O'Keefe, town manager and Lee Krohn, planning director and municipal project manager. In the initial session, the town officials will outline the history of the traffic issues in Manchester and provide a photographic overview of the work. Next up will be Jason Waysville, the town's resident engineer from Boswell Engineering, talking about the skills needed to be an engineer. In particular, Waysville will explain the design of the town's dry-laid marble arch bridge and the history of arch bridges dating back to the Romans.

The challenges of developing job estimates, mobilization of employees and equipment and day-to- day construction scheduling will be handled by a team from Schultz Construction Company including Kevin Ture, project manager and Bill Schultz, company president.


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The final session will a look into the modern day utility network with FairPoint Communications manager, Bob Rondeau. In a visit the FairPoint's Manchester office, students will learn about the complexities of providing a responsive and functional communications network. Among the topics covered by Rondeau will be the challenge of moving major north/south cables for the Roundabout project.

The program developed at the request of Melissa Rice and Scott Deidrich, MEMS' teachers.

For more information contact Tricia Hayes, public information officer for the Town of Manchester's Roundabout at 802-362-0207 or t.hayes@manchester-vt.gov.