InTrans / Apr 23, 2021

InTrans women win WTS awards

Brianna Lawton
Nazik Citir

Institute for Transportation (InTrans) women once again earned well-deserved recognition from WTS International, an organization dedicated to supporting women in the transportation industry.

This year, the WTS Greater Chicago Area Chapter awarded InTrans doctoral students Brianna Lawton and Nazik Citir with scholarships. Lawton was awarded with the Maggie Walsh Leadership Legacy Scholarship, and Citir was awarded the President’s Scholarship.

InTrans women have won a scholarship from the WTS Greater Chicago Area Chapter in each of the last six years.

The Maggie Walsh Leadership Legacy Scholarship was launched in 2007 to recognize an outstanding young woman pursuing graduate studies working toward a career in transportation or a related field, and who demonstrates a specific interest in advancing transportation innovation.

“I was excited and honored when I was notified that I had been selected for the WTS Chicago 2019–2020 Maggie Walsh Leadership Legacy Scholarship Award,” Lawton said.

Lawton is pursuing a doctorate in transportation engineering at Iowa State University (ISU), where she plans to conduct research in Ghana, West Africa on understanding the relationship between drivers and road users toward establishing a sustainable framework to evaluate rural road safety to contribute toward decreasing crash fatalities in the country. She was awarded a Fulbright Student Award in 2020 to support her research in Ghana and is studying under InTrans Director Shauna Hallmark.

Citir was one of two recipients of the President’s Award.

“I am extremely honored and grateful to be awarded this scholarship that increased my motivation toward my goals in the field of transportation infrastructure systems,” Citir said. “Also, I believe this award opens a pathway for making new connections with members and professionals.”

Citir is pursuing a doctorate in intelligent infrastructure engineering and structural engineering at ISU, and she is evaluating pavement performance and structural capacities and developing tools to estimate their remaining service life using artificial intelligence techniques to help agencies in their pavement management decision-making processes. She is studying under Program for Sustainable Pavement Engineering & Research (PROSPER) Director Halil Ceylan.

Both women and all WTS Greater Chicago Area Chapter were recognized during a virtual ceremony earlier this month. Citir said the virtual awards ceremony was a great platform to showcase her accomplishments and goals to transportation professionals. Lawton likewise attended the ceremony virtually and said it was nice to connect and network with the chapter members.

More details about the scholarships are available here. Details about last year’s winners are available here.