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Students use 1000s of cans to build their entry for Foodbank contest
[Photo Essay]

TCC students work on the build for Canstruction 2011.

NORFOLK, Va. (Nov. 15, 2011) – For the 14th year running, Tidewater Community College’s Engineering Club took top awards in Canstruction, a design/build competition with a charitable twist. Team TCC won awards for Most Cans and Best Meal for their Take a Slice out of Hunger entry, which was illustrated by a large, double-layer cake with a missing slice and illuminated candles.

As participants in Canstruction, the group created a masterpiece out of cans to shed light on hunger concerns in the area. Led by student team captain James Dagres and faculty advisor Paul Gordy, head of TCC’s engineering program, this year’s Canstruction team had more than 25 members. On the evening of the build, Nov. 9, in Norfolk's Selden Arcade, the group had just six hours to construct the structure out of 10,532 cans, which were donated by Farm Fresh. The completed project weighs in at close to 5 tons.

Created in 1992 and now held in 65 United States cities, Canstruction combines the competitive spirit of a design/build contest with a unique way to feed the hungry. After the creations are judged and exhibited for two weeks, the food goes to the local food bank.


Laurie White

Tidewater Community College - the largest provider of higher education and Workforce Solutions services in Hampton Roads - served more than 46,000 students in 2010-11. The 16th highest associate-degree producer in the nation, TCC offers more than 150 programs including business administration, culinary arts, general studies, modeling and simulation, network security, nursing, and automotive technology. Among the fastest-growing two-year institutions in the United States, TCC was founded in 1968 as a part of the Virginia Community College System. The college serves the South Hampton Roads region with campuses in Chesapeake, Norfolk, Portsmouth and Virginia Beach as well as the TCC Jeanne and George Roper Performing Arts Center in Norfolk’s theater district, the Visual Arts Center in Olde Towne Portsmouth, the Regional Automotive Center in Chesapeake, and the Regional Health Professions Center and the Advanced Technology Center in Virginia Beach, as well as the Regional Workforce Solutions Center in Suffolk. Forty-five percent of the region’s residents attending a college or university in Virginia last fall were enrolled at TCC. For more information, visit