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K-12 Outreach

Summer Transportation Institute, July 2011

Mack-Blackwell Rural Transportation Center (MBTC) hosted fifteen students, grades 8-11, from the Summer Transportation Institute (STI) in Little Rock, Arkansas on Friday, July 8, 2011. The students had a walking tour of the campus and visited labs in Bell Engineering Center and the Center for Training Transportation Professionals to learn more about transportation-related careers.

During their visit, the students had a chance to see the university’s Vibroseis shaker truck, a truck that simulates earthquakes. They learned how data is collected for detecting cracks in pavement and saw the vehicle that is used to do this work. The group also mixed concrete and created decorative garden stones.

The STI is sponsored by the Federal Highway Administration, Arkansas State Highway and Transportation Department and supported by MBTC.


Eric Specking of Engineering Recruitment demonstrating his skills at saying

"biological, chemical, civil, computer science, computer, electrical, industrial, and mechanical engineering" as one word!




Dr. Heather Nachtmann, MBTC Director, talking to students about different career opportunities in Transportation




 Students feel the vibrations of the Vibroseis shaker truck 



Kevin Hall, MBTC Executive Director, shows data results from the digital highway data vehicle


Digital highway data vehicle

Kevin Hall shows students where the lasers are housed on the digital highway data vehicle



Summer Transportation Institute students in the labs