Geotechnical Society of Edmonton

Dr. Don Scott - Applied Geotechnical Design Award

Dr. Don Scott - Applied Geotechnical Design Award

In 2003, the Civil Engineering Department at the University of Alberta held the first of what was to become an annual competition for it's graduate students, challenging them to put the theory they were learning into practice. They were required to design and predict the failure strengths of model reinforced retaining walls that they had to construct on the day of the competition, with no opportunity to undertake trial tests.

In 2004, the format of the competition was expanded, with guest judges from various local geotechnical consultants. The guest judges evaluated the various designs for innovation and gave presentations to the students regarding their firms. This year also saw the introduction of small prizes supplied by various local firms, with a cash prize for first place provided by the Geotechnical Society of Edmonton.

By 2005, the competition was expanded to allow the participation of students from NAIT. In addition, this year saw the first appearance of a trophy for the first place student team. The trophy was designed by Mr. Paul Boos and was financially supported by his firm, Reinforced Earth Company.

The trophy mimics the appearance of a reinforced wall with a roadway running across the top. The cruciform wall panels typically associated with a Reinforced Earth wall are modeled by brass plates which are inscribed with the names of the winning students. The trophy will be kept on display at the Civil Engineering Department between competitions.

In recognition of his long term service to the University of Alberta and to the local geotechnical community, both the competition and the trophy were named after Dr. Don Scott in 2005.