Eighteen high school students set their sights high this summer at the 2012 Summer High School Transportation Institute (STI) at North Carolina A&T State University.
Their first step toward achieving their goals has won a national award.
The students chose to focus on traffic congestion as the subject of a video they created for a contest sponsored by the American Road and Transportation Builders Association (ARTBA). Titled, “How to Solve Congestion,” the video surveys the costs of congestion and various initiatives that have been proven effective. It features footage shot by the students on a field trip to Washington, D.C.
“Our goal is to minimize congestion daily to better serve you,” the video states. “A world without congestion. Our vision. Our future. Together, we can make it happen.”
The project also impressed Deborah Underwood, the STI program director, and Dr. Kofi Obeng of the Department of Marketing, Transportation and Supply Chain, a specialist in transportation planning and economics.
“They did a wonderful job,” Underwood says. “They did a lot of research. Dr. Obeng was just so proud of them.”
The five-week, annual program marked its 20th year this summer. Up to 20 students are selected each year, including up to two from out of state. The program is funded by the National Summer Transportation Institute of the Federal Highway Administration.
It’s a great opportunity for the students and the university alike. “It’s a recruiting tool for our transportation and supply chain major,” Underwood said. “Quite a few students have attended the institute and gone on to enroll here at A&T and major in transportation.”
That particular major offers both a good deal of scholarship funding and great career prospects for graduates.
“They’re widely recruited,” Underwood says. “Our students have jobs before they graduate.”
This year’s prize-winning STI students were:
- William Barlow, Western Alamance High School, Elon, N.C.
- Jahbari Best, Paisley IB Magnet School, Winston-Salem, N.C.
- Anthony Bradshaw, Bradshaw Home School, Bowling Green, Ky.
- Trey Cash, Hugh M. Cummings High School, Graham, N.C.
- Kristian Conner, Ashbrook High School, Gastonia, N.C.
- Braysha Douglas, James B. Dudley High School, Greensboro, N.C.
- Daijia Ervin, Southeast Guilford High School, Greensboro, N.C.
- Jihad Evans, Weaver Academy for Performing/Visual Arts & Advanced Technology, Greensboro, N.C.
- Mikaela Freeman, Northern Guilford High School, Greensboro, N.C.
- Aymber Gibson, Guilford Technical Community College Middle College, Jamestown, N.C.
- Aleckzandrya Jackson, Southern Guilford High School, Greensboro, N.C.
- Daniel Keku, Northeast Guilford High School, Browns Summit, N.C.
- Alexis Kemp, West Rowan High School, Salisbury, N.C.
- Aarion Moore, Weaver Academy for Performing/Visual Arts & Advanced Technology, Greensboro, N.C.
- Omar Munye, Middle College at North Carolina A&T State University, Greensboro, N.C.
- Brandon Smith, Smith Academy Home Educated Student, Greensboro, N.C.
- Idrees Strong-Spicer, Northwest Guilford High School, Greensboro, N.C.
- Damion Swittenberg, Thomasville High School, Thomasville, N.C.
Each student will receive an equal portion of the $500 cash prize and a certificate of accomplishment from ARTBA.