Education & Technology Transfer Activities: 1999

2000 Summer Transportation Institute (STI)




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Sequential Number


Identification Number


Matching Research Agency

Center for Infrastructure Engineering Studies

Principal Investigator

Gary S. Spring, Associate Professor
Civil Engineering
University of Missouri-Rolla
208 Civil Engineering
Rolla, MO 65409
p(573) 341-6286
f(573) 341-4729

Student Involvement

Rising 11th and 12th grade high school students

Project Objective

To provide an educational experience which explores all aspects of the transportation industry and its role in our society.

Project Abstract

The Transportation Institute in the Department of Civil Engineering at the University of Missouri-Rolla hosted its second U.S. Department of Transportation Summer Transportation Institute (STI). The goals of the Institutes Program are to (1) expose secondary school students to and allow them to participate in a series of academic and practical experiences designed to motivate them toward professions in the transportation industry, and (2) provide secondary school students with mathematics, science and technological enrichment to enable them to pursue a career in the transportation industry. In concert with these STI goals and with UMR's unique strengths, the objectives of this effort were to provide an educational experience for high school students that explored a wide variety of aspects of the transportation industry and its role in our society. To that end, the STI curriculum provided educational opportunities for its students in critical areas of transportation, math and science, and computers. The fifteen eleventh and twelfth grade students who were chosen for the Program were exposed to university life, leadership and team building activities, and a series of lectures, seminars, hands-on laboratories and field trips described in detail in the following pages. The Institute was comprised of 4 weeks: Orientation, Highway, Public and Intermodal Transportation weeks (see Appendix 4) and was headquartered at the Transportation Institute in the Civil Engineering Butler-Carlton Building. Classes, however, were held in a variety of facilities across Campus. The Federal Highway Administration money was used as "seed" money to fund the Institute, which cost more than twice the amount funded. Faculty, staff and students from the Department of Civil Engineering conducted the four-week Institute. Government agencies and private firms provided substantial support in funding, staff assistance and educational materials as well. See Appendix 10 for a complete listing of sponsors. Youths from across the State of Missouri were recruited. Email greetings, with program brochure and application attached, were sent to more than 1,000 high school counselors and 1,500 high school students who had indicated an interest in engineering. More than 300 letters and brochures were mailed to select counselors across the State as well. The National Society of Black Engineers and local MODOT personnel were again asked to help to identify and recruit likely candidates. Eighteen applications were received and fifteen were accepted. Copies of the cover letter, brochure and application are provided in Appendix 1. Applicants were selected based upon their academic standing, recommendation letters, and their essays explaining their interest in transportation. The Project team assessed the applications and accepted the fifteen aforementioned applicants. The average grade point average of the chosen group was in excess of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale. Nine of the fifteen were twelfth graders and six were eleventh graders. There were twelve African Americans, one Hispanic, one Asian, and one Caucasian. Nine of the students were women.

Task Description


Anticipated Benefits

Participants are exposed to career opportunities in transportation, university life, leadership and team building activities through series of lectures, seminars, hands-on laboratories and field trips.

Modal Orientation



Project Start Date:04/01/2000
Project End Date:03/31/2001

Relationship to other Research/Projects


Technology Transfer Activities

The whole program is technology transfer - see Abstract

Transportation Research Board Keywords

Educational experience, transportation industry, and society