Harbor Bridge Field Trip

Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi hosted its most recent field trip to the US 181 Harbor Bridge Project on April 19, 2023. The annual event was organized by Dr. Miguel Cid Montoya, TAMU-CC Assistant Professor of Engineering, and the engineering companies in charge of the project, Dragados and Flatiron. The goal of the US 181 Harbor Bridge Project is to create the longest cable-stayed bridge in the United States. Those attending the field trip included twelve civil engineering students in Montoya’s structural engineering course, along with three of Montoya’s research students.  

“Engineering students spend so many hours doing math or analysis methods, but they must experience reality to understand a lot of engineering concepts,” said Montoya. “After the field trip, the students knew better what they can expect from their first job post-graduation.”  

On the field trip, the company engineers started with a safety brief before the students visited the North and South approaches of the bridge and the Cable-Stayed Bridge Pylon viewing area. While on the tour, the engineers explained how they tested the bridge’s wind stability, created the main road of the bridge, and communicated with the crane operators. Additionally, to create a balanced workplace, the engineers also described how teams were made, how they split and assigned tasks, and the roles that each member took. After the tour, the students returned to the conference room where the company engineers provided a final presentation with a Q&A segment. The students utilized this time to ask questions about their future careers as engineers.   

“Learning about engineering concepts and then applying them to real projects is two different things,” said Matthew Hinojosa ’23, a TAMU-CC mechanical engineering technology major. “Being that this field trip’s lessons were more hands-on, I feel it created a learning experience like no other. I also enjoyed how the engineers mentioned what it was like adapting and separating their assigned tasks since group work is a large aspect of engineering.”   

Harbor Bridge Field Trip

Photos from the Harbor Bridge field trip organized by Dr. Miguel Cid Montoya, TAMU-CC Assistant Professor of Engineering.