Blakeslee Prestress hosts visit from West Point Cadets

On October 21st, 2016 Blakeslee Prestress, Inc. in Branford, CT. hosted a visit from the Senior Class of the Civil and Mechanical Engineering Dept. of the United States Military Academy at West Point.

This was the 10th anniversary of Blakeslee hosting this event which has become a tradition where both Blakeslee Prestress and the cadets have come to value.

The day starts about 8:30 AM with the arrival by tour bus of 35 cadets with 4 instructors, 2 of which were civilian. Everyone is greeted by Blakeslee employees and three groups were formed and escorted by Blakeslee personnel into the plant where they learned the many different facets of the production facility. They were led through areas such as the quality control lab, batch plant, production and finishing areas.

Everyone returned to the office area and divided into two groups. One group sat in a presentation of the Tekla Structures 3D modeling we utilize at Blakeslee. Topics such as product shapes and the Blakeslee Library were discussed. This was following by a demonstration on how to make a connection along with creating framing plans showing how changes are adapted quickly and reporting is recorded. The other group received an introduction to Precast Prestressed Concrete by Rita l. Seraderian the Executive Director of PCI Northeast. The cadets explored building and bridge design solutions using precast and prestressed concrete systems and learned about the theory of prestressing and how it applies to manufacturing prestressed concrete products. The final presentation was a collage of project examples for building and bridges. once each group finished they swapped rooms to complete the morning.

As the cadets were leaving everyone gathered to take a group photo as Lyle R. Milliman, P.E. Cpt, EN presented Robert J. Vitelli, President of Blakeslee Prestress Inc., with a plaque that read:

For outstanding support of the West Point Civil Engineering Program while providing an introduction to structural modeling software and facility tours of your Prestress Concrete Plant. Your professionalism and technical expertise impressed upon the cadets the essential traits of successful engineers and projects, and helped contribute to their education and inspiration.

Thank you

Col. Karl F. Meyer

C&ME Deputy Department Head

As the group boarded their bus we thought about our next meeting which would be the sponsoring of the cadets for the 2017 Big Beam Contest.

These are all extraordinary young men and women who have willingly chosen to dedicate themselves to our country, and all of us at Blakeslee Prestress Inc. are extremely proud and privileged to host this event for them. The Academy's moto is "Duty, Honor, Country'. That says it all.

Plant Tour/Lectures Available to All

PCINE producer members host plant tours at their manufacturing facilities for design professionals and college students. Participants are offered the opportunity to see a plant in full operation during business hours. Continuing education credit (AIA Learning Units and PDH's) can be awarded and tours may also include a presentation for additional credit. Participants learn how precast concrete is manufactured and finished, see the steps taken to ensure quality products, and gain a better understanding of how the product works within the design and construction process.

Plant tours must be scheduled in advance. Lunch may be included. Safety equipment (hard hats and safety glasses) will be provided, and participants should wear closed toe shoes and long pants. To contact PCINE for assistance in arranging a tour at a PCI Certified member facility, phone (888) 700-5670 or use our online form link below.

Contact PCI Northeast about Producer Member Plant Tours