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American Public Transportation Association

 Early Career Program


The American Public Transportation Association’s Early Career Program (ECP) is a professional development program for individuals new to the public transportation industry.  The intended audience for this program are individuals with 3-5 years of industry work experience, including 1-3 years of management, project, or program experience.

 Have you been working in the public transportation industry for 3-5 years and beginning to gain or have management responsibilities? Are you thinking about the next steps in your career (e.g. how you achieve your next promotion)? If so, consider the ECP as your doorway to career advancement in the industry. The ECP is dedicated to providing public transportation professionals with the skills, knowledge, and networks needed for advancement.

The Early Career Program Task Force will select 25 individuals who represent the rich diversity of the industry and are from among APTA member organizations to participate in a 12-month long program which includes a variety of skill building workshops, round table sessions, online collaboration and unique access to the industry’s leaders through a national mentoring program.

APTA recognizes the challenges and decisions today's economy presents to individuals just beginning their careers. We are continuing to take unique steps to promote and retain a talented workforce that ensures the success of the public transportation industry.

Program Benefits

  • Participate in a national professional development program specifically designed to meet your needs as you move forward in your career.
  • Deepen your knowledge of the public transportation industry outside your area of specialization.
  • Benefit from a local and national mentoring program.
  • Develop a strong network of transit professionals.
  • Build awareness of the breadth and range of transit career paths and opportunities.
  • Hone your talents and become the best of the next generation of industry specialists, managers, and leaders.


Program Letter from President & CEO Michael Melaniphy

Read the Letter ​


Insights from the Program Co-Chairs



“We are incredibly excited to present the fourth year of APTA’s Early Career Program! With a career in public transportation, you can make significant contributions that touch the lives of thousands each day. However, it’s not always easy to know where to begin your own career journey. The Early Career Program aims to jumpstart that process for talented and motivated early-career transit professionals and those who have recently changed careers to public transportation.. We want you to learn about the many opportunities in transit. You will also meet and develop relationships with industry leaders, who will mentor you, and with peers from across the country who will be both friends and resources throughout your career. You are the bright future of transit, and APTA wants to invest in you through the Early Career Program. Apply today!”

Rich Andreski (Public Transportation Chief - Connecticut Department of Transportation) and Jill Stober (Senior Transportation Planner - KFH Group, Incorporated)

Read the Letter​


 Get Started


Ready to apply? Visit How to Apply to find out how to access the online application.


 Early Career Program Class of 2017 Timeline



- June 16-18, 2016 Class Kick-Off & Workshop in Phoenix, AZ at the APTA Rail Conference 


- May 2017 - Capstone Workshop and Graduation in Reno, NV at the APTA Bus & Paratransit Conference

View full timeline for Class of 2017​




If you have questions about the Early Career Program, please contact:

Rachelle Jezbera
Early Career Program Manager

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Suite 1200 East
Washington, DC 20005
Telephone (202) 496-4800 | Fax (202) 496-4324
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