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Transportation personnel participate in national conference

Personnel from NDSU’s College of Business and Upper Great Plains Transportation Institute participated in the National Transportation in Indian Country Conference in Duluth, Minnesota, Sept. 17-20.

More than 500 people attended educational sessions and demonstrations focusing on safety, law enforcement, project management, transit, technology and innovation, planning, legislation and regulation, maintenance and preservation. 

Kim Vachal participated in a panel on crash data reporting that focused on improving traffic crash reporting on tribal roads so local leaders can use the data to develop strategies to reduce accidents. Vachal is an associate professor of transportation and logistics and leads the institute’s Rural Transportation Safety and Security Center. 

Rob Lynch conducted a focus group to gain feedback on self-paced online training materials for tribal transit. The materials are designed to provide transit management training for tribal transit professionals. Lynch is training coordinator for the institute’s Small Urban and Rural Transit Center. He also was on a panel focused on challenges of transit and mobility in rural areas.

Jill Hough presented on how research at the Small Urban, Rural and Tribal Center on Mobility can help tribes with transportation planning activities. Hough is an associate professor of transportation and logistics and director of UGPTI’s Small Urban and Rural Transit Center that collaborates in SURTCOM with the Western Transportation Institute at Montana State University. 

Dale Heglund, director of the institute’s ND Local Technical Assistance Programs, discussed outreach and training initiatives that could have applications for tribal road agencies. He described the process for transforming severely deteriorated paved roads into high-quality gravel roads; a Bridge 101 training that teaches local road staff how to inspect and maintain local bridges; and strategies to improve and maintain signs on local roads. 

Jody Bohn Baldock, academic coordinator for NDSU’s Transportation and Logistics Program, attended and staffed an exhibit to promote NDSU’s online graduate programs in transportation and logistics. NeTia Bauman, former tribal outreach coordinator for the institute, served on the planning committee for the conference.

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North Dakota State University
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