The Precast Studio at McNeese State University in Lake Charles, Louisiana, led by Dr. Ahmed Abdel-Mohti began in January 2021 focused on the petrochemical industry.
With the introduction of this curriculum, McNeese began offering the Prestressed Concrete course to all engineering students. An important part of the studio program is the partnership formed with three local precasters, Alfred Miller, Dunham Price Group LLC and Tindall Corporation.
Dr. Mohti took students to Dunham Price Concrete Products plant in Vinton, Louisiana and Alfred Miller Contracting in Lake Charles, Louisiana. The members of the ASCE also joined these two tours. During the tours, the students learned about various precast products and the day-to-day workload of these plants. Unlike many other universities this year, McNeese State met in person, using larger classrooms to allow students to social distance.
The students enjoyed hearing from industry guest speakers who shared their knowledge and stories of the industries as well as civil engineering, design, fabrication and erection of precast concrete structures and systems.
The end of semester project allowed students to work in groups and look at various issues that affect precast concrete design in the petrochemical industry, where many students will end up employed. Some of the groups studied technical aspects of the precast, some design and some engineering. Students created projects such as building shelters for use during natural disasters using precast concrete and measuring the effect of vibration on the footing of a plant’s machinery. Some of these theoretical projects will be conducted in the studio in the future.
PCI Convention 2021
Dr. Mohti, along with three of his students, attended the 2021 national PCI convention where they took part in technical sessions, visited some precast structures in the area and visited the precast show.
Unique Program Aspects
About 50% overall of McNeese State’s engineering graduates enter the petrochemical field, which uses a number of precast products in design and construction of its facilities.
Students have access to a room equipped with four computers and a plotter to help prepare them to design precast components.
Ahmed Abdel-Mohti, PhD
Associate Professor of Civil Engineering
Industry Partners and Guests
Dunham Price Group LLC
McNeese State University
Colonel Ted Thompson
PCI Gulf South
Kevin L. Kirkley (not Kirley)
Michael D. Willis
Three McNeese State students traveled to the PCI Convention in New Orleans
The studio has had 16 undergraduates and 4 graduate students involved in the studio