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K-State Today

April 25, 2013

K-State team receives honorable mention in EPA Challenge competition

Submitted by Mary Rankin

A team from Kansas State University has been awarded honorable mention among larger institutions in Environmental Protection Agency's first-ever Campus RainWorks Challenge competition.

The challenge engaged students and faculty members at colleges and universities to apply green infrastructure principles and design, encourage interdisciplinary collaboration and increase the use of green infrastructure on campuses across the nation.

The goal of the K-State team, a joint class project for BAE 665/865 Ecological Engineering Design and LAR 410 Planting Design Studio, was to modify the existing campus master plan to improve storm water management; reduce flood frequency and improve water quality in Campus Creek; and provide a garden for students, alumni and community members to be representative of a native wetland prairie ecosystem.

Faculty advisors were Stacy Hutchinson, associate professor of biological and agricultural engineering; and Lee Skabelund, associate professor of landscape architecture; and Jessica Canfield, assistant professor of landscape architecture.

Hutchinson and Skabelund are also members of the Kansas State University Urban Water Institute where Hutchinson serves as interim director and Skabelund is on the faculty advisory committee.

Five teams from the class competed. Winning team members were graduate students Sarah Auvenshine, civil engineering; Phillip Denker, biological and agricultural engineering; Joseph Weeks, agronomy; and Zakary Ratajczak, biology; and seniors James Devault, Cydnie Jones and Abigail Glastetter, all in landscape architecture.

The Campus RainWorks Challenge received submissions from 218 teams, which were reviewed by more than 30 expert judges from EPA, the American Society of Landscape Architects, the Water Environment Federation and the American Society of Civil Engineers.

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