• Baylor students make new friends following ‘a wonderful act of kindness’

    Baylor Baja SAE team

    For several years now, a team of Baylor students has annually entered a national Baja SAE (Society of Automotive Engineers) competition, in which participants (typically engineering students) design, build and race an off-road vehicle. This year’s event was held in Gorman, Calif., about 70 miles northwest of downtown Los Angeles — but this time around, the story wasn’t what happened during the competition; it was what happened afterwards.

    Steven and Susan are a married couple from Wichita Falls, Texas, with no connection to Baylor; in fact, their children attended Texas A&M. But the pair developed a newfound appreciation for Baylor when they ran into the BU Baja team this summer; we’ll let them explain:

    “We were in Sequoia National Park in California last month on vacation, and somehow got our car hung up on a large log with protruding branches while we were trying to position it for a perfect picture. There was nothing that we could do but catch a ride with a park ranger to the nearest working phone and call for help. While waiting for the tow truck to arrive, a pick-up with Texas plates and Texas and Baylor flags waving in the breeze drove past us. They realized we were in trouble and, in true Texas spirit, came back to help us.

    “What great representatives of Baylor University! They told us that they had participated in a competition in Bakersfield, and stopped at the park before heading back to Texas. They were all so eager to help us, and used their engineering knowledge to dislodge the log without getting hurt or damaging our car. We only wish that we had taken a picture of all of them, but we will always remember their special ‘rescue mission’!”

    As Dr. Lesley Wright (the Baylor Baja team sponsor, and an associate professor of mechanical engineering) explains, the Baylor students spent over an hour of what was supposed to be their free time “digging, lifting, jacking, pushing and pulling” to free the couple’s vehicle.

    Sic ’em, Baylor engineering students!

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