So today is Friday & I couldn’t be more excited for the weekend, if you couldn’t tell by my picture & title! Yesterday was a rainy, miserable day and it was frustrating for me, particularly because of the prestressed concrete class that I had mentioned in my last blog entry. My group and I completed our design and each of us checked through the calculations. We submitted our results and were feeling good about our design (it was cost efficient & practical). Upon walking into class, we saw everyone in the class’s beam design results on the projector screen, and my professor started to go through the designs when class started. At the third criteria, there was a minimum capacity limit that our beam needed to be above (which we thought we had)..upon seeing our results, my professor declared “DQ’d!!” (meaning we were disqualified from the competition).
Well, that was one of the most awkward situations I’ve ever been in…. In designing our beam, we made sure that the beam could sustain the loads that were going to be put on it; however, there was an additional limit that we must have miscalculated & therefore, our beam was under-capacity. In addition to the awkwardness, I was also frustrated because my team and I had spent a few weeks refining our designs and put a lot of effort and thought into our work. We made sure that we time managed so that we weren’t rushing to do it the night before. Well in class, all of that seemed to be diminished by a two-syllable abbreviation for “disqualified”. I’m not sure what happens with our design, since we will have to analyze the winning team’s beam for our final report.
This entry just explains one of the frustrations in engineering, and that you have to keep working hard throughout your engineering career (in school and in the working world). I’m at the end of my 7th semester at Lehigh and I still get frustrated at mistakes and sometimes, I feel like my entire work effort has been for nothing. What matters, however, is how you deal with the frustration & “failures”. Yesterday wasn’t the best, but today is a new day & an even better one because it is the start of the weekend! As my family always reminds me, “Fall down seven times, stand up eight.”