Amy Cavaretta, winner of the Helene Overly Graduate Scholarship, will receive her Master of Arts in Urban and Regional Planning in May from the University of Florida As an exercise in international development and transportation planning, her master’s thesis examines the viability of transportation development, specifically public transportation, to reduce urban poverty through increased accessibility in the case of the Kibera slum in Nairobi, Kenya. Her thesis provides transportation recommendations for incorporation into the Kenya Slum Upgrading Program, a partnership between the government of Kenya and the United Nations to provide improved housing and facilities to the slums of Nairobi. After graduation, Amy plans to return to Washington, D.C., to begin a career in federal transportation and infrastructure policy.
Naima Rivas, winner of the Sharon D. Banks Memorial Undergraduate Scholarship, is currently concentrating on electrical engineering at the University of Texas, Arlington, and will receive her B.S. in the spring of 2015. Naima wants to become an electrical engineer so that she can work on the electrical systems in vehicles that will revolutionize the transportation industry. She envisions a future with autonomous electric cars, smart highways, autonomous mass transit systems, infallible air traffic control systems, renewable energy fueling stations, and a national sensor network that will eliminate traffic congestion and traffic accidents altogether. She recently published an article on the topic, “Traffic Surveillance Sensors for Congestion Mitigation,” with Dr. Sia Ardekani.
Stacia Slowey, winner of the Molitoris Leadership Scholarship for Undergraduates, is majoring in civil engineering with a dual major in environment and natural resources at the University of Wyoming while she works for the Wyoming Department of Transportation as a design technician in the Laramie design squad. In the future, Stacia wants to be involved in diverse transportation related projects ranging from innovative intersection and interchange design, ITS projects, and bicycle related projects.
Vinh Kha, winner of the WTS Junior College Scholarship, came to the US from 8,000 miles away where she worked as a tour guide in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, only seven years ago. With no knowledge of the English language, she has managed to set herself on a successful career path at the California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) and taking a nearly full-time course load at junior college. She is majoring in civil engineering with a focus in water resource and environmental studies. Her goal is to help people live comfortably in harmony with other species in the ecosystem. Vinh would also like to join the Engineers without Borders Organization.
Joyrie Dickerson, winner of the WTS Transportation YOU High School Scholarship, attends Pennsauken High School in Pennsauken, NJ, with a concentration on the subject of chemical engineering. With a GPA of 4.0, Joyrie is also president of the school’s student government, she’s a member of the National Honor Society, the French Honor Society (and publicity director), French club, varsity club, renaissance club, leo club, green indian club, engineering club, digital imaging club, and chemistry club. When she attends college, Joyrie looks forward to learning how to make transportation eco-friendly by creating fuel from plant matter called biomass, available from agricultural waste, which will provide fuel needed for transportation that creates less pollution in the air.