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Five students receive the Eisenhower Transportation Graduate Fellowships

Friday, Dec. 14, 2018


MANHATTAN — Five Kansas State University students from the Carl R. Ice College of Engineering and the College of Architecture, Planning, and Design are among those across the U.S. to be honored with 2018-2019 Dwight David Eisenhower Transportation Graduate Fellowships from the U.S. Department of Transportation.

Elliot Schrag, master's student in civil engineering, Buhler; Rachel Foss, master's student in regional and community planning, Highlands Ranch, Colorado; Andrew Young, master's student in regional and community planning, Eden Prairie, Minnesota; Rial Carver, master's student in regional and community planning, Richmond, Virginia; and Jack Cunningham, doctoral student in civil engineering, Roanoke, Virginia, will each receive $5,000 in support of their graduate studies.

The fellowships, awarded annually to 150-200 exceptional students around the country, recognize those pursuing degrees in transportation-related disciplines. The program advances the transportation workforce by attracting the brightest minds to the field through education, research and workforce development.

The Center for Transportation Workforce Development, a part of the U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Highway Administration, manages activities that integrate transportation into college and university programs, with the aim to increase the number of postsecondary students interested in pursuing transportation-related careers as well as helping to retain top talent in the U.S. transportation industry.

Cunningham is working with Eric Fitzsimmons, assistant professor of civil engineering, on research focused on wrong-way driving crashes and countermeasures on Kansas highways. Schrag is working with Christopher Jones, associate professor of civil engineering, on improving the durability of concrete transportation infrastructure through application of self-healing materials.

"Our students are highly deserving of this fellowship," Fitzsimmons said. "Their research will make a significant impact on saving lives on the highway and preserving our nation's infrastructure."

Young is examining impacts of state marijuana legislation on road safety and Ross is exploring graphical presentation of metropolitan transportation plans. Both are currently interning in their field as they complete their master's degrees — Young at TranSystems, a transportation consulting firm headquartered in Kansas City, and Ross at the Flint Hills Metropolitan Planning Organization, the regional planning agency for Manhattan and its environs. Both are in their second year of support from the Eisenhower program.

"It is a privilege to work with students such as Rachel and Andrew who have already demonstrated their strong commitment to transportation as a profession," said Greg Newmark, their advising assistant professor of landscape architecture and regional and community planning. "Their work is already shaping the future."

Carver, in collaboration with Hyung Jin Kim, associate professor in landscape architecture and regional and community planning, is working on the transportation angle of shaping new perspectives on the traditional neighborhood unit concept in North America by understanding access to health and community services. She is also as a recipient of the 2018 Clarence Stein Institute's research grant and has worked for Kansas State University's Center for Engagement and Community Development.

"Rial is not only a talented student, but has also been on the path to becoming a successful researcher in planning," Kim said. "This fellowship will help her connect with other fellows nationally who share a similar focus."

"The colleges of Engineering, and Architecture, Planning and Design have built a strong connection and focus on transportation," Newmark said. "In particular, the cross-collaboration between the landscape architecture, and regional and community planning department, and the transportation center in the civil engineering department, has been recognized with these five prestigious fellowships."


Carl R. Ice College of Engineering

College of Architecture, Planning, and Design

News tip

Buhler, Kansas; Highlands Ranch, Colorado; Eden Prairie, Minnesota; and Richmond and Roanoke, Virginia.

Written by

Mary Rankin

Thom Jackson