Student Engagement

CSCRS aims to engage students at all consortium member campuses through student-directed activities and professional opportunities helping to build a workforce with an understanding of road safety principles and systems-based approaches and methods.

Below are recent examples of CSCRS student-focused activities; for more complete coverage of CSCRS’s many student programs, view our semi-annual progress reports.


Student Programs

CSCRS Research to Practice Bytes Series

CSCRS’s Research to Practice Bytes online seminar series focuses on multidisciplinary research and practices to advance transportation safety. Some sessions have featured student presenters:

CSCRS teaches kids about designing safe roads during the NC Science Festival

As part of the annual 2022 North Carolina Science Festival, a month-long celebration of science throughout the Tar Heel State, CSCRS presented two activities designed to engage young students in imagining what it takes to make roads safe.

On April 6, 2022, CSCRS researcher Seth LaJeunesse guided approximately 70 North Carolina middle school students through a virtual safe road demonstration. 

Then on April 9, 2022, several CSCRS colleagues hosted a table at the UNC Science Expo, an in-person event coordinated by the UNC Morehead Planetarium & Science Center. The Expo was held on the UNC campus with dozens of booths featuring family-focused science activities. At the CSCRS exhibit, kids were invited to use miniature road design features to plan a safe path to school along a busy street. 

Safe Systems Summit Poster Showcase

The Safe Systems Summit, held in April 2019, was a key student engagement activity in 2019; 95 students attended. Of particular note was the Student Poster Showcase, offering students the opportunity to display and discuss their transportation-related research, capstone and community projects as poster presentations. The posters were reviewed by a panel of judges and prizes were awarded to the top three posters, including to Duke and UNC students working on CSCRS research projects R9 and R17, respectively.

Cardboard Challenge

Florida Atlantic University coordinated with the Urban Impact Lab, Dream in Green, AIA Miami, Miami Center for Architecture & Design, Inc., and the Health Foundation of South Florida to hold the Cardboard Challenge, October 2019, in Miami. The event was targeted toward K-5 schools in the area and focused around creative play, street safety and environmental stewardship.

Duke University Duke Humans and Autonomy Lab (HAL)

Students from NC A&T’s Summer High School Transportation Institute visited the HAL lab at Duke in July 2019 to learn about the facility’s robotics programs and to practice traffic safety activities led by CSCRS researchers. This was the second year students from this program have participated in these activities.

HAL lab visits Tigerfest

Students at Chapel Hill High School toured the HAL lab mobile command center van at their annual Tigerfest event in May 2019.

Coffee and Conversation

There have been three iterations of the UNC’s Coffee and Conversation, a lecture series started in January 2018. It is a biweekly dialogue featuring experts in public health, transportation, planning, engineering, and ethics who explore the many interrelated components of our complex transportation system.

National Travel Monitoring Exposition and Conference (NaTMEC) – 2021

NaTMEC 2021, planned and coordinated by CSCRS, incorporated multiple activities for students.


Student Research and Scholarships

CSCRS Outstanding Student of the Year

CSCRS has chosen six Outstanding Students of the Year, who receive their awards at the Council of University Transportation Center’s Annual Outstanding Student of the Year Awards ceremony held every January.

  • The first winner in 2017 was Becky Naumann, who received her Ph.D. in epidemiology from UNC.  
  • The 2018 winner was Ali Boggs, who earned her doctorate in Transportation Engineering from The University of Tennessee, Knoxville, in July 2019.
  • The 2019 winner was Mary Wolfe, who received her Ph.D. in City and Regional Planning in 2020 at UNC.
  • The 2020 winner was Benjamin Bauchwitz, expected to complete his dissertation in 2023 at Duke University.
  • The 2021 winner was Emma Vinella-Brusher, who is pursuing a dual master’s degree in Public Health and City and Regional Planning at UNC.
  • The 2022 winner was Aqshems Nichols, a UCB civil engineering doctoral student with a focus on transportation engineering.

Dwight David Eisenhower Transportation Fellows

Several CSCRS students were chosen as Dwight David Eisenhower Transportation Fellows in fall 2019. Two were UNC’s M. Clay Barnes, whose research covers health/safety outcomes related to e-commerce, and Libby Szuflita, whose research looks at traffic analysis zones.
The University of California, Berkeley also had several Eisenhower fellows.

CSCRS Road Safety Fellows

CSCRS Road Safety Fellows at the University of California, Berkeley, engage in a variety of CSCRS research activities.