Cornell Seismic Design

Advancing Earthquake Resilience

What We Do





What is Cornell Seismic Design

Cornell Seismic Design is an undergraduate project team that designs, builds, and tests a scaled multi-story balsa wood tower for an international undergraduate competition held every spring at the annual meeting hosted by the Earthquake Engineering Research Institute (EERI).

Our team offers a great opportunity for students interested in all engineering disciplines, especially those focused in construction, structures, architecture, seismology and more, to experience the process of bringing a project from an abstract thought to a tangible product. Our team has no sub-teams, meaning all members experience hands-on construction, learn several different applicable softwares, use a laser cutter, acquire leadership positions, and above all make a substantial impact on the final building for competition!

Past Competitions

Cornell Seismic Design attends the EERI Seismic Design Competition with about 40 other undergraduate, international teams. These are the past rankings in each category of the competition, and our final rankings.

2016 – San Francisco, CA

  • 4th in Architecture
  • 3rd in Final Annual Seismic Cost
  • 6th in Analysis Predicted Score
  • Third Place Overall

2017 – Portland, Oregon

  • 1st in Communication
  • 8th in Architecture
  • 12th in Final Annual Seismic Cost
  • First Place Overall

2018 – Los Angeles, CA

  • 7th in Communication
  • 7th in Analysis Predicted Score
  • 17th in Architecture
  • Seventh Place Overall

2019 – Vancouver, Canada

  • 4th in Communication
  • 9th in Architecture
  • 9th in Final Annual Seismic Cost

2020 – San Diego, CA

  • No Score

2021 – Virtual

  • 9th in Communication
  • 11th in Architecture
  • Seventh Place Overall