Michigan Tech will use the NRC Education Grant to develop immersive virtual railroad field trips for K-12 and undergraduate education.

NRC Awards Education Grant To Michigan Technological University

The National Railroad Construction and Maintenance Association (NRC) is pleased to announce that the Rail Transportation Program at the Michigan Technological University (Michigan Tech)is the recipient of a 2022 NRC Education Grant.

Michigan Tech will receive at $15,000 grant from the NRC. The funds will be used during 2023 for student educational and research purposes rather than administrative, general fund, and institution or program overhead costs.

“On behalf of the faculty and students in Rail Transportation Department at Michigan Tech, I would like to thank the NRC for this recognition and support,” says Dr. Ricardo Eiris, assistant professor at Michigan Tech’s Transportation Institute (MTTI). “Michigan Tech will use the grant to develop immersive virtual railroad field trips for K-12 and undergraduate education. We believe this education and research effort will help attract young people to careers in the railroad industry.”

NRC President Ashley Wieland says Michigan Tech has an exemplary rail transportation education program not only educates the next generation, but also prepares the students for industry advancements. “Michigan Tech’s work is aligned with the intent of the NRC grant program to positively impact the future of the railroad construction and maintenance industry and to attract promising young people to the workforce.”

NRC Education Committee Chairman Daniel Stout, who serves as vice president of STX Railroad Construction Services, thanked all of the programs that applied for the NRC grant this year. "Schools with railroad engineering and construction management programs are vital to preparing the next generation of railway industry workers. The NRC’s Board of Directors and our member companies are committed to supporting the work of these institutions to train and prepare qualified railway employees.”

The NRC awards an education grant each year to a college, university or technical school within the United States with a railway construction, railway engineering or construction management program. The NRC has the only association education grant program specific to the rail industry. The next NRC Education Grant application process will open in the spring of 2023. Check the NRC website for more details.

National Railroad Construction and Maintenance Association (NRC): The NRC is a U.S. trade association that advances the mutual interests of railway contractors and suppliers who construct, maintain and supply freight railroads and rail-transit and passenger lines. Founded in 1978, the NRC connects members with other railway industry professionals and government officials and policy makers. Together we work to create a positive business climate and to make railway construction and maintenance safer and more efficient.

Michigan Technological University (Michigan Tech): Michigan Tech is a public research university founded in 1885 in Houghton, Michigan, and is home to more than 7,000 students from 55 countries around the world. Consistently ranked among the best universities in the country for return on investment, Michigan’s flagship technological university offers more than 120 undergraduate and graduate degree programs. Its interdisciplinary and collaborative Rail Transportation Program focuses on developing students with rail transportation and related engineering skills that meet the industry demands of the 21st century.

What our members say…

The NRC Education Grant program gave us the flexibility to fund graduate students engaged in developing railway-themed youth outreach activities, and documenting these activities to share with others. Thanks to the support from NRC, railway museums and kindergarten-through-grade 12 (K-12) educators have a new tool for attracting a diverse new generation of railway engineering and construction professionals, including traditionally under-represented groups.

C. Tyler Dick, Ph.D., P.E.

Lecturer and Principal Railway Research Engineer Rail Transportation and Engineering Center

RailTEC Dept. of Civil and Environmental Engineering, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

KeeP up on our latest news