Model vehicles made with edible products and plans for a national disaster retreat will be among the projects on display during the Freshman Design Fair Thursday, Dec. 6, at West Virginia Universitys College of Engineering and Mineral Resources.

The Design Fair, in which first-year engineering students exhibit projects they have worked on this semester, will be from 11:30 a.m.-1 p.m. in the Mineral Resources Building atrium and Engineering Sciences Building ground floor.

“This annual event showcases the ingenuity and hard work of our engineering freshmen,”said Kolin Brown, freshman engineering coordinator.

Among the activities planned will be a downhill race involving model vehicles made with edible products. Students in Shahab Mohagheghs class had to design and build”all-food”cars weighing no more than 2 pounds and costing no more than $5 to construct. Thursdays race down a small incline will be a”test run”of sorts for the vehicles; the car that makes it down the ramp in the shortest time and intact wins.

“This project challenged students to be creative,”said Mohaghegh, an associate professor in the Department of Petroleum and Natural Gas Engineering.”The students came up with some crazy ideas. Some used a cucumber for the body, and others used candy canes for the axles.”

Students in Don Slaters class designed a public and private sector retreat near Morgantown for use during a national emergency. The student teams researched and described various engineering disciplines required to design and construct such a facility. They also wrote a comprehensive planning report and gave presentations aimed at convincing a governing body such as Congress to fund the project.

“Through this project, the students learned about several engineering disciplines and improved their writing and speaking skills,”said Slater, an instructor in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering.

For more information about the Freshman Design Fair, contact Brown at 304-293-4821, ext. 2239.