Civil Engineering Student Named “Student of the Year” by National Institute for Transportation & Communities

Jan 05, 2018
Criteria for this award include technical merit and research accomplishments, academic performance, professionalism and leadership.

Jordan-optJordan Preston, BS/MS candidate in civil engineering at Oregon Tech, has been selected as the 2017 “Student of the Year” by the National Institute for Transportation and Communities (NITC), a university transportation center funded by the U.S. Department of Transportation

For the past 15 years, the Department has honored an outstanding student from each University Transportation Center at a special ceremony during the Transportation Research Board (TRB) annual meeting. Each student receives a certificate from USDOT and $1,000 plus the cost of attendance from his or her center. Criteria for this award include technical merit and research accomplishments, academic performance, professionalism and leadership. Jordan will receive her award Saturday, Jan. 6 in Washington D.C. 

Jordan is currently working on her master’s degree as part of the concurrent BS/MS civil engineering degrees program, with a goal of graduating in spring 2018. She came to Oregon Tech from Yakima, Washington and was inspired to begin her civil engineering journey by her father, a graduate and other Oregon Tech graduates.

“When I decided to pursue civil engineering, Oregon Tech was the only choice,” she said. “The civil engineering program is such a good balance of classroom and practical work. We are learning concepts and the theory behind engineering, but then we get to go out to the labs and put them right into practice. The work is challenging, but working on group projects or studying for the Fundamentals of Engineering exam together creates a real sense of community among the students. The faculty are also the best on campus. They know their technical stuff, but are also interested in helping students succeed, whether that is academically, professionally or personally.”

Dr. Roger Lindgren, professor and graduate program director in the civil engineering department, has worked with Jordan during her years at Oregon Tech. “Jordan is a remarkable student and she has made a lasting impact on the civil engineering department, the larger Oregon Tech community, and the field of transportation engineering. She has been highly successful as an undergraduate, a graduate student, a teaching assistant, a research assistant and an extracurricular volunteer,” he said. “It has been an honor to work with her.”

Jordan has been involved with NITC since she arrived on campus, and is now in her third year in an executive role in the NITC-funded Institute of Transportation Engineers (ITE) Student Chapter. She has since been hired on as a research assistant on two NITC projects:

Building upon her NITC experience, her graduate project is an alternatives analysis for a complete streets redesign of a key, car-centric corridor connecting the Oregon Tech campus to the downtown business district. This evaluation will incorporate design principles from a summer bicycle transportation course in Europe that was led by Dr. Schlossberg in 2017.

Outside of the world of academia – Jordan has been spending the past six summers as a Transportation Intern at the Washington Department of Transportation. Her work with the WSDOT has taken her through three offices including design, construction and program management.

Upon her graduation, Jordan hopes to work for a private engineering firm in the Pacific Northwest that specializes in transportation planning and design.

 

About Oregon Tech

Founded in Klamath Falls in 1947, Oregon Institute of Technology is the premier public polytechnic institution in the Pacific Northwest. Oregon Tech provides bachelor’s and master’s degree programs in engineering, health technologies, business, technology, communication, and applied sciences that prepare students to be effective participants in their professional, public and international communities through applied, relevant learning and professional practice. Oregon Tech has a full-service, residential campus in Klamath Falls; an urban, industry-focused campus in Wilsonville; an Online campus; and offers degrees at Boeing Seattle and at other sites. Visit www.oit.edu to learn more about Oregon Institute of Technology.

About NITC

The National Institute for Transportation and Communities (NITC) is one of five U.S. Department of Transportation national university transportation centers. The NITC program is a Portland State-led partnership with the University of OregonOregon Institute of Technology, University of Utah and new partners University of Arizona and University of Texas at Arlington. The center’s theme is improving mobility of people and goods to build strong communities — through research, education and technology transfer.

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