The Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) recently awarded the Center for International Trade and Transportation (CITT) at California State University, Long Beach (CSULB) a major federal award to look at transportation issues throughout the southwestern United States and find ways in which educational opportunities can improve them.
The CITT is dedicated to delivering education programs, innovative research and community outreach in the area of goods movement. CITT is the Long Beach home for three major research centers: METRANS Transportation Center, a U.S. Department of Transportation-designated university transportation center; the U.C. Davis-led National Center for Sustainable Transportation; and METROFREIGHT, a Volvo Research and Education Foundations Center of Excellence in Urban Freight based at USC.
Acting as the new Surface Transportation Regional Transportation Workforce Center of Excellence (SRSTWC), the team will facilitate partnerships among federal, state, regional and local departments of transportation and education, industry and other stakeholders involved in transportation planning, operations and education. The endeavor will cover eight states - California, Arizona, Nevada, New Mexico, Utah, Colorado, Oklahoma and Texas.
“We have great challenges and opportunities,” said Thomas O’Brien in a statement, CITT executive director and METRANS associate director. “The size of the region—which includes the nation’s two most populous states—and the diversity of its population provide an opportunity and a challenge. It’s a unique regional laboratory in which to study workforce needs tied to both urban and rural transportation services, transportation in and through border states and trade gateways and corridors.”
Over the next four years, the SRSTWC will identify workforce and training needs for various transportation sectors, evaluate different options for workforce education and development across the educational spectrum of traditional and non-traditional learning communities and develop educational offerings.
“A lot of work went into securing this center and it’s a great honor,” said O’Brien in a statement. “We have a lot of work in front of us and a lot of great individuals providing assistance.”