MNTRC Newsletter Vol. 20, Issue 3: Winter 2013

UDM summer program teaches high school students about transportation


Leo E. Hanifin, PhD, Professor, Department of Mechanical Engineering

Summer program student

A student works on his project at Transit Smart Moves, UDM’s summer transportation program.

University of Detroit Mercy News – The Transit Smart Moves Summer Program was conducted July 15-19, 2013 on the campus of University of Detroit Mercy, in the College of Engineering. Nineteen students representing more than 10 Detroit-area schools participated in the program. The 2013 summer program schedule included a Detroit Police Department drunk driving simulation, a tour of the Oakland County Road Commission, introduction to the LEGO NXT Mindstorms project, a discussion about equity in transportation, several sessions of LEGO Smart Moves, a discussion of roundabouts, a presentation on the architecture of urban planning and transportation, a UDM campus tour, and more. The week closed with student presentations of their Smart Moves projects, plus awards and recognitions for their fine work.

During the fall semester, a Saturday Transit Smart Moves program was conducted over the course of five weeks, during which the same program from the summer was utilized and expanded upon. Twenty-two metropolitan Detroit-area high school students participated in the program, along with an ACT Prep course to strengthen student skills in test taking as they prepare for college entrance. The students learned a great deal about the importance of transportation engineering and transit.