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Professor gives students material experience

John Neary, assistant professor in the Washington State University School of Architecture and Construction Management, will give students an up-close opportunity to experience the materials they will use in their professions when he coordinates the construction of an eight-foot tall, steel teaching structure behind Carpenter Hall next month.<br><br>With support from the Masonry Industry Promotion Group, a group of 60 students will also experience brick-laying through a Sept. 8 workshop from 1 to 5 p.m. The American Institute of Steel Construction provided the design. <br><br>Architecture students spend their years at school drawing pictures and creating models of the beautiful buildings they would like to create. But, do they know what a shear connection on a steel beam looks like and how it affects their design? Have they ever used bricks rather than just imagining them in a model? <br><br>The steel structure and the brick-laying exercise will give professors the opportunity to illustrate connections and structures that have been discussed in class but not often seen up-close, Neary said. <br><br>”It gives the students a sense of the feel, the scale and the heft of the structural members,” he said. “In the case of the steel structure, much of that is usually hidden in the building.” <br><br>Neary said the brick-laying workshop, held in front of Carpenter Hall on  Spokane Street., will give the students the opportunity to get a feel for the way in which forces like gravity are contained and controlled by the structure’s design. He also hopes the exercise will give the students appreciation for how difficult it is to lay brick well. <br><br>Edward Allen, author of several building construction books, including a standard textbook on building construction, will lead the seminar. Allen, who was a professor at Massachusetts Institute and Technology and a lecturer at Yale University, will also speak at 7 p.m. Sept. 9 in Carpenter Hall, Room 102. <br><br>The foundation for the steel structure, built partly by WSU faculty member Ken Carper and his structures students this summer, is located in the courtyard between Carpenter Hall and the Daggy Hall parking area, with expected completion in September. Among those who are donating time or materials for the project are Metals Fabrication Co., Baugh Skanska Inc., Brooklyn Ironworks, American Iron Works & Erectors Inc., Shea Graham Construction, Motley & Motley and WSU Capital Planning and Development. Among the groups that will use the steel structure are students in structures, architecture design studios, and materials and methods courses. <br><br>

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