Godzilla crushes Canstruction
Charity takes an intriguing form
Article: Paige Kreutzwieser – Staff Writer
Ten by ten feet wide and eight feet tall – that is all the space the University of Regina faculty of engineering and applied science students had to win this years Regina Food Bank (RFB) “Canstruction” competition. “Some of the ingenuity and imagination that goes into this is great,” said Todd McCauley, RFB’s Marketing and Special Events Manager.
In his first year coordinating the event, McCauley said the feedback has been encouraging.
“The best feedback that I’ve seen is simply watching the faces of the people walking in the malls as they pass by. So when you are coming down the escalator and suddenly there is a Godzilla made out of cans, it is going to turn some heads.”
This year’s competition boasted a MIR machine, an Olympic torch, and two video game entries – a Pokémon and Super Mario, and the University of Regina entry, Godzilla.
Fifth-year engineering student and team leader for the U of R Canstruction team, Arin Dolph, explains that he chose the science fiction monster because of his interest in the movie, but kept most of the design to himself.
“I was very secretive because the design looked terrible before it was done. “
Dolph’s design had Godzilla destroying Regina’s downtown Hill Towers. But his “terrible” creation secured his team Structural Ingenuity, Juror’s Choice, and People’s Choice. “Structural Ingenuity is the one I am really proud of because it is the only engineering award.” Other awards include Best Use of Labels and Best Meal. “We donated 3,000 tuna cans and 3,000 chicken cans. I am sure [the RFB] appreciates it but it doesn’t make the best meal,” laughed Dolph.
The competition was created in New York in 1992 and now, 22 years later, takes place annually in 150 cities around the world. McCauley said since 2013 the campaign has raised has raised over 21 million pounds.
This year the U of R team raised $9,000 and bought over 6,000 cans.
“We’ve been very fortunate that we get our food at whole sale prices more or less,” explained David deMontigny, U of R engineering faculty associate dean. “Our design this year cost $8,500 and if we were to buy the cans off the shelf it would probably be $14,000.”
Canstruction rules require one team member who is an architect, engineer, graphic designer, art teacher or other designated design professional. For the U of R team, deMontigny held that role. But the real creativity and leadership came from Dolph, who has been a part of the U of R team for three years now.
Dolph is thankful for the control deMontigny has allowed him because as a student it has given him a lot of practical knowledge. “It’s really good as a student because I learn a bunch of skills. I learned all of AutoCAD, but I also learned managerial skills being team leader, organizational skills that was definitely something I learned.” But the real purpose of Canstruction is charity.
“It’s larger than life,” explained McCauley. “It’s 10x10x8. And the people get to see it. They get to see all the food that is getting donated to the food bank. It puts the need for food in the conscious of the public and to do it in this eye catching way.”
For Dolph and the rest of the U of R team, they know their hard work in fundraising is going to a good cause.
“I donated [a lot of cans] all to the food bank. It’s very nice because it’s very altruistic thing for me to do. It’s a one of the good ways as an engineer I can give back to the community.”