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Byron Shire
February 1, 2023

A Lego load of fun on the Gold Coast

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The winning student team from the Faculty of Science and Engineering – Max Den Exter, Jack Marr, Jazmin Bertuzzi and Shimay Clark. Photo supplied.

A place for water dragons to thrive was the theme of a construction competition at Southern Cross University (SCU) yesterday. The tricky part was making the build with Lego.

SCU hosted the Live Lego Build with five student teams going head-to-head under the guidance of Lego Master superstars Andrew Tuppen and Damian Hinds.

The work in progress – a paradise for water dragons? Photo supplied.

Each team of four SCU students will use their Lego skills to create a 3D masterpiece, with each of the Lego builds depicting an aspect of the Gold Coast’s landscape and cultural diversity.

Building a landscape for water dragons

Bachelor of Engineering student Max Den Exter the teams who were all tasked to build a landscape for water dragons. ‘Each team had five different coloured water dragons and every team go to do their own spin on the environment that they water dragon may live in.’

Max, whose team won the event, said you don’t need to be an engineering student to be really good at Lego, but the completion got pretty heated. ‘It was between the faculties at the university and I’ll admit there was some fierce rivalry.

‘Each one (faculty) was able to bring their own learning into what they built. My team was able to create and engineering focus with a bit a bit of an environmental science type spin.’

Jazmin Bertuzzi and Shimay Clark spent International Women’s Day competing in a traditionally male dominated domain (around one fifth of graduating engineering students are women). Photo supplied.

Didn’t have to adhere to the ‘boring’ rules

Max said the beauty of the event was that his team didn’t have to adhere to the ‘boring’ rules that an engineer would usually have to contend with. ‘We were able to have a bit of freedom and get nice and creative and I think that’s the beauty of Lego, being able to really have that childish place.’

Max said the inspiration for their piece came from a building construction the team could see on the horizon. The landscape travelled from a cityscape, to a riparian landscape leading to a beach then into a forest. ’That was our environmental science, our marine science and engineering all across her three different zone. That was the whole theme of our build.’

This event was the first of six major Lego build events to be held at six major education partners of Study Gold Coast to showcase the city as a leading study destination for both face-to-face and online study.

Judges Lego Masters Andrew Tuppen and Damian Hinds

Andrew Tuppen, from Pacific Pines, is a music teacher at Emmanuel College on the Gold Coast who, along with Brisbane-based Damian Hinds, found fame when they became the runner-up team on Channel Nine’s 2020 Lego Masters show hosted by Hamish Blake.

The five student teams at Southern Cross University represented the four University faculties, plus one dedicated international student team with students from across the four faculties.


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