Posts categorized under "Training"

Rob Lynch Joins SURTC as Training Coordinator

Lynch_RobRob Lynch joined the Small Urban and Rural Transit Center (SURTC) in January, 2014, as its new training coordinator. Most recently, Rob held the position of transportation manager for North Dakota State University (NDSU), where he managed transit, parking, bicycle, and pedestrian functions for a growing campus community of over 16,000. Rob is a member of the Metro Area Transit Coordinating Board for Fargo, ND, and Moorhead, MN, and serves on many local transportation and corridor study groups. Prior to this, he managed two non-profit organizations and worked in the hospitality industry for over 25 years. During this period, he developed and conducted specialized management and team training for two national restaurant chains. Rob was elected to the Fargo City Commission in 2000 and served as chairman of the city’s Parking Commission, Transportation Technical Committee and the Fargo/Cass Board of Health. Rob is a graduate of NDSU earning a B.U.S. in emergency management and industrial engineering. He can be reached at rob.lynch@ndsu.edu.

Participation at Louisiana Public Transit Conference

Keven Anderson, coordinator of training and outreach, and researcher Jeremy Mattson are participating in the 2013 Louisiana Public Transit Conference in New Orleans, LA, Nov. 20-22.

Anderson is conducting a session on succession planning and mentoring. Many of the transit managers currently in the industry are at or near retirement age, and most systems have no plans for future managers. In his presentation, Anderson will discuss how to run your transit system as a business and how to grow your current employees through mentor programs to take on more responsibility and continue to grow.

Mattson is giving a presentation on the use of alternative fuels and hybrid vehicles by small urban and rural transit systems. His presentation will be based on a previous study he conducted which involved a survey of small urban and rural transit operators. This research examined the use of alternative fuels and hybrids by these agencies, satisfaction with these alternatives, problems encountered, reasons for adoption, and deterrents, both perceived and real. Click here to access the report.

SURTC is part of New Rural and Small Urban Livability Center

The Small Urban and Rural Transit Center (SURTC) will be a partner in a new Small Urban and Rural Livability Center being established with a two-year $2.8 million grant from the U.S. Department of Transportation.  The grant was awarded as part of the University Transportation Centers (UTC) program.

The Western Transportation Institute at Montana State University will lead the effort to conduct research, education, and outreach activities on issues such as expanding public transportation options; creating safe routes for bicyclists and pedestrians; improving access to key regional transportation hubs and destinations; and integrating all available modes of transportation. SURTC brings to the effort expertise in transit, mobility’s impact on access to vital services in rural communities and other rural livability factors. The center will receive $1.1 million over two years for its involvement in the project.

SURTC was created in 2001 to assist small urban and rural transit systems and other transit entities by conducting research and offering outreach and training. In recognition of the role that mobility plays in the livability of rural communities, the center has increased its emphasis on this area of research.

“When people think about livable communities, one of their top priorities is being able to get where they need to go without always having to use their car,” said Steve Albert, director of the Western Transportation Institute. “Most of the livability initiatives up to now have focused on urban areas, so we are very excited and honored to take the lead on these issues for millions of Americans who live in small cities and rural areas.”

The U.S. DOT Research and Innovative Technology Administration received more than 140 applications for UTC awards from universities and research consortiums across the country, and selected only 35 centers.   “Only two Centers were chosen to focus on livability issues, so we are very proud to represent interests and needs of rural residents,” said Western Transportation Institute program manager David Kack, who will serve as the center’s director.

“We look forward to our partnership with the Western Transportation Institute and continuing our work in regards to livability in rural and small urban areas,” said Jill Hough, SURTC director.  Hough will serve as the deputy director of the new center.

“Many rural areas are seeing a dramatic increase in the elderly population. Our research shows that elderly individuals prefer to stay in their homes for as long as possible, and it’s cost effective for them to do so,” Hough notes. “At the same time, some rural communities are seeing rapid population growth and economic development.  Mobility plays a critical role in maintaining and enhancing the livability of communities in both cases,” she said.

“The grant funding and our collaboration with the Western Transportation Institute will help us address key issues related to livability in rural areas,” Hough said. “It’s likely our work will be useful in addressing those issues in urban and suburban areas as well.”

Employment Opportunity – Trainer/Training Coordinator

SURTC has an employment opportunity for a trainer/training coordinator. See the details in the link below.

Employment Opportunity: Trainer/Training Coordinator

 

SURTC Partnering with National Center on Senior Transportation

SURTC is working with the National Center on Senior Transportation (NCST) to develop a plan for conducting technical assistance and training needs assessments.

NCST has been administered by Easter Seals, Inc. and the National Association of Area Agencies on Aging (n4a) since its inception, and these partners were once again selected in 2012 by the Federal Transit Administration to administer the center.

Easter Seals, Inc. and n4a identified the development of a plan for conducting technical assistance and training needs assessments as one of NCST’s milestones.

Ph.D. student Elvis Ndembe and Dr. Jill Hough began work on this project December 1, 2012.  Ndembe and Hough are looking at past successful technical assistance mechanisms NCST has utilized and will develop survey instruments, conduct focus groups, and evaluate other appropriate data sources to help with the new assessment. The assessment should be completed by May 2013.

Updated Training Information Posted

An updated list and description of training courses being offered by SURTC has been posted online. SURTC has been developing new training courses and broadening the types of training offered. Among the recently developed classes include "Environmental Justice and Public Participation" and "Safety, Security, and Emergency Management." Both of these classes will be available for booking in early 2013. "Capital Asset Management" is another new class that is now available. Visit the Training on Demand section of the SURTC website to view the list of training courses currently being offered.

SURTC develops and provides training for transit operators, transit associations, and state Departments of Transportation as needs are identified. If you would like to host a training session, please e-mail training@surtc.org or call us directly — Carol Wright (701) 231-8231; Keven Anderson (701) 231-6436.

Tribal Transit: Principles of Transit Management Course to be Held in Rapid City – Register Now

Registration is open for the Tribal Transit: Principles of Transit Management course to be held April 10-12, 2012 at the Ramkota Hotel in Rapid City, SD. The course will be held from 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. each day. The cost is $325 per participant, and the deadline for registration is April 5. Class size is limited to 35 participants.

Training is being held in conjunction with the 2012 Tribal/BIA Transportation Conference. Continuing Education Credits are being provided by United Tribes Technical College at no charge.

Click here for registration and hotel information.

The instructors for the course are Carol Wright and Keven Anderson of SURTC. Tribal Transit:  Principles of Transit Management is an intensive three-day course developed by SURTC that covers virtually all aspects of transit and paratransit management for operators of tribal transit programs across the country.  This course is based on our popular Principles of Transit Management course which has been taught across the country over the past three years, but it has been specifically modified to address the unique perspective of tribal transit operations.  Particular attention has been placed on tribal governance, financial management, human resource management and procurement, since many of these issues vary even among various tribal entities.  This course is directed toward experienced managers and those who are relatively new to their positions, as well as front-line supervisors and those who are in a position to assist transit managers. It also provides extensive take-home resource materials.

Emergency Planning Workshop to be Held in Fargo

The research team for Boyd, Caton & Grant and Nusura, Inc. are conducting a free Emergency Planning Workshop Feb. 14-15 in Fargo, ND, co-sponsored by SURTC.  This interactive workshop and tabletop exercise will explore industry-leading practices in emergency planning for people with disabilities and access and functional needs, with particular focus on the role of paratransit agencies in emergency response and recovery. Participant feedback will help shape the final form and content of the Paratransit Emergency Preparedness and Operations Handbook. [Register Here]

NDSU is partner in U.S. Department of Transportation grant to study transit

North Dakota State University is one of four universities that will cooperatively conduct research and provide training and outreach related to public transit under a $3.5 million grant awarded this week by the U.S. Department of Transportation.

NDSU is a partner with the University of Illinois at Chicago and Florida International University in Miami.  The University of South Florida in Tampa will lead the effort.  The Small Urban & Rural Transit Center, a part of the Upper Great Plains Transportation Research Institute at NDSU, will provide expertise in rural and small urban transportation.  NDSU will receive about $500,000 from the grant.

The grant was one of 22 awarded in the University Transportation Centers Program administered by the DOT’s Research and Innovative Technology Administration and was one of two grants specifically targeted to consortiums that will study public transportation.

“NDSU has developed expertise in transit management and coordination, among other areas specifically related to transit providers in rural and small urban areas,” notes Jill Hough, director of the Small Urban & Rural Transit Center. “Our participation in this effort brings added knowledge and awareness to assure that the issues faced by rural and small urban transit providers are addressed.”

Overall, the partnership will focus on the following topic areas:

  • Enhancing transit safety
  • Developing procedures and approaches to help agencies better care for their fleets and facilities
  • Exploring how transit can enhance economic competitiveness of business, regions or communities
  • Enhancing the livability of regions or communities through transit
  • Improving environmental sustainability of transportation systems and transit operations.

“In each of these areas we will bring a rural or small community focus,” Hough noted.  “We will also gain ideas from our partners that may be transferable to the smaller transit providers that we serve. Each of the four partner universities brings unique strengths and accomplishments to this consortium, but by working together we will enhance our overall collective contribution to the transit industry.” Hough said.

Transportation Seminar: Giving Effective Presentations

Carol Wright will present a seminar Nov. 15 on Giving Effective Presentations for UGPTI's Transportation Seminar Series.

At one point or another, each of us is called upon to give a presentation. It might be in front of a college class, at a business meeting, at a conference, or at a research forum. One of the most highly sought after skills is the ability to stand on your feet in front of an audience, say what you want to say, and be effective in the way you present your material. A person who can stand in front of a group with poise and confidence creates the perception of competency.

Regardless of the setting for your presentation or your public speaking experience level, this seminar will provide you with strategies and techniques for building upon your existing skills, as well as tips for improving your performance and stepping up your confidence the next time you give a presentation.

A recording of the seminar will be made available online shortly after it is completed.

SURTC is a part of the Upper Great Plains Transportation Institute at North Dakota State University