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K-State Today

July 28, 2016

Regional & community planning student receives national fellowship

Submitted by Courtney Boman

Emma Rearick, regional and community planning student

Emma Rearick, regional & community planning student, is one of 59 students across the U.S. to be honored with the 2016-2017 Dwight David Eisenhower Transportation Graduate Fellowship from the U.S. Department of Transportation. This is the second Eisenhower fellowship received by a K-State regional & community planning student. James Wood, a current doctoral student at Florida State University, received the award in 2013. 

The fellowship awards students 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 approximate $31,900 fellowship is designated to help with tuition and provide a stipend and the opportunity to attend the Transportation Research Board annual meeting in Washington, D.C. Rearick applied for the fellowship in April by submitting a personal statement, research plan, resume, transcripts and four letters of reference.

Rearick's research is focused on identifying and studying rural communities that are successfully reducing their dependence on personal automobiles. Her goal is to find approaches to reducing car dependence that can be shared with other rural communities.

"This fellowship will help to connect me and my research to the greater transportation planning community," Rearick said. "Attending the Transportation Research Board annual meeting is an amazing opportunity to network and learn, and having this fellowship will encourage me to share my results with a broader audience than I might otherwise. Additionally, I think the Eisenhower Fellowship will give me the financial flexibility to take risks and pursue opportunities as they arise."

Gregory Newmark, assistant professor of regional & community planning and Rearick's thesis chair, received the Eisenhower Fellowship when he was in graduate school.

"The fellowship was critical to providing me the financial security to focus on learning and exploring research topics of interest to me," Newmark said. "I hope that the fellowship will allow Emma to delve deeper into her research to be more prepared to enter and contribute to the field of transportation planning. I also hope that the fellowship will provide her a community to inspire her studies and subsequent work."