Grade 7 students at Rutherford Elementary School just missed out on a top-three finish at the Skills Canada B.C. competition in April. Pictured are Fraser Dawes, left, teacher Chad Jobe, Stewart Vandermast and Moustafa Alsaady. (KARL YU photo)

Grade 7 students at Rutherford Elementary School just missed out on a top-three finish at the Skills Canada B.C. competition in April. Pictured are Fraser Dawes, left, teacher Chad Jobe, Stewart Vandermast and Moustafa Alsaady. (KARL YU photo)

Nanaimo school district students show skills in building bridges

Rutherford Elementary School Grade 7 students compete at Skills Canada competition

Grade 7 students from Rutherford Elementary School showed they were able to run with high school students at Skills Canada B.C.’s spaghetti bridge-building competition in April.

The competition saw elementary, high school and university students competing in different competitions and showcased trades and technology skills. Participants in the junior skills competition were required to build a bridge with spaghetti and hot glue that had to hold a one-kilogram weight for a minute.

Rutherford students just missed out on the top three, finishing fourth overall, but first among Grade 7s, said Stewart Vandermast, a Rutherford Grade 7 student. Vandermast said all the teams that finished ahead of his team had Grade 9 students.

The students used lessons learned both in and out of the classroom, which helped the team perform better.

“Teamwork was a big part,” said Fraser Dawes, another Rutherford Grade 7 student. “We had to learn how to work together that was a huge part.”

“We had to use a lot of math to get the right lengths for the supports and how much we were using,” said Vandermast.

Chad Jobe, Grade 7 teacher, said the competition is really about concept and design theory.

“The kids are introduced to some fundamental design concepts and then what they do is they’ll come up with their own ideas about stress points and spans,” said Jobe.

Other school district students partaking in the competition were Dover Bay Secondary’s Jay Panchal and Jared Houghton (3D Animation), Taylor Olsen from Nanaimo District Secondary (cabinet making), Reid Della-Rosa from the career technical centre (carpentry), Hailey Urbanoski from Wellington Secondary (fashion technology), Jesse Miller from Dover Bay (graphic design) and Owen Yarocki, career technical centre student (welding).

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

The Beban Park social centre in Nanaimo will serve as a mass community clinic for immunizations. (News Bulletin photo)
Editorial: Every vaccine dose helps the cause for all of us

Enthusiasm indicates a lot of people want to be immunized, a lot of people will get immunized

Anyone with information is asked to call Nanaimo RCMP at 250-754-2345 or contact Crime Stoppers by calling 1-800-222-8477 or submitting a tip online at
21-year-old motorbike rider dies after crash with ATV on Nanaimo back road

Incident happened Sunday afternoon near Boomerang Lake

News Bulletin file photo
LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Bike lanes inexpensive compared with roads

It is a myth that car drivers are subsidizing cyclists or pedestrians, says letter writer

March 8 is International Women’s Day. (Stock photo)
Editorial: International Women’s Day can inspire us to recommit to equality

Let’s call out sexism, amplify feminism and keep working toward equality

Police in Nanaimo are turning to the public for help identifying two men suspected of a break-and-enter attempt at a Nicol Street apartment building. (Photo submitted)
Nanaimo RCMP looking for two men suspected of a break-and-enter attempt

Security camera snapped images in Nicol Street apartment building parking lot

An Island Health nurse prepares a dose of COVID-19 vaccine. (Photo courtesy Island Health)
Island Health opening 19 clinics to immunize Vancouver Island residents

Health authority anticipates more than 40,000 people will be immunized over the next month

Montreal Canadiens right wing Paul Byron (41) fights for control of the puck with Vancouver Canucks defenceman Quinn Hughes (43) during first period NHL action in Vancouver, Monday, March 8, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Captain Clutch: Horvat nets shootout winner as Canucks edge Habs 2-1

Vancouver, Montreal tangle again on Wednesday

A special committee has been appointed to look at reforming B.C.’s police act and is inviting the public to make submissions until April 30, 2021. (Black Press media file)
Have thoughts on B.C.’s review of the provincial Police Act?

Submissions will be accepted until April 30

A sports car crashed into a lamp standard and rolled down the hill behind Country Club Centre mall on Sunday night. (Greg Sakaki/News Bulletin)
Sports car crashes into lamp post, rolls down hill behind Nanaimo mall

Driver uninjured in incident Sunday night on Norwell Drive

Cottonwoods Care Home in Kelowna. (Google Maps)
New COVID-19 outbreak at Kelowna care home includes fully vaccinated seniors: Henry

Two staff and 10 residents tested positive at Cottonwoods Care Centre

Excerpts from a conversation between Bria Fisher and the fake truLOCAL job. Fisher had signed a job agreement and was prepared to start work for what she thought was truLOCAL before she learned it was a scam. (Contributed)
B.C. woman warning others after losing $3,000 in job scam

Bria Fisher was hired by what she thought was a Canadian company, only to be out thousands

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry and Health Minister Adrian Dix provide a regular update on the COVID-19 situation, B.C. legislature, March 2, 2020. (B.C. government)
B.C.’s COVID-19 cases: 545 Saturday, 532 Sunday, 385 Monday

Focus on Prince Rupert, Lower Mainland large workplaces

Rising accident rates and payout costs have contributed to billion-dollar deficits at ICBC. (Comox Valley Record)
B.C. appealing decision keeping ICBC injury cases in court

David Eby vows to ‘clip wings’ of personal injury lawyers

Most Read