San José State University (SJSU) conducted its eighteenth annual National Summer Transportation Institute (NSTI) in July 2023. NSTI was offered as a 3-week, Monday through Friday, 15-day non-residential program for high school students (9th through 12th grades) on the SJSU campus in San José, California. The program's primary goal was to inform and inspire students to think critically about their futures and potential for careers in the transportation industry. A secondary goal of the program was to inspire the students to attend a college or university after high school. The program was comprised of three main components: (1) a college-level course in environmental studies with 6,000 words writing minimum; (2) field trips; and (3) guest speakers. SJSU is a large, urban university located in the heart of Silicon Valley. NSTI is structured in the style and format of a pre-college internship, emphasizing civic leadership and public policy, which are MTI’s anchoring principles. Thus, a balance is sought between academic and experiential learning designed to motivate high school students to expand their horizons into the field of transportation and to be connected to the University in a meaningful way.
Alverina first joined MTI as a graduate student research assistant in 2017. Currently, she serves as MTI’s Director of Operations. In this role, Alverina manages the institute’s online presence through newsletters, social media campaigns, press releases, blogs, and web content creation. Alverina plays a vital role in the execution of MTI’s workforce development programs and other public-facing events. She holds a Master of Urban and Regional Planning, with a focus on Affordable Housing and Community Development Finance, from San José State University.