This program introduces students to transportation careers with a focus on sustainability, smart transportation, and social justice through a flexible curriculum.

The mission of the Transportation Workforce Institute, hosted by LATTC, has regional impact through its partnerships to meet employer needs, as well as national impact through its shared curriculum and workforce development resources.

The Transportation Youth Academy was formed in 2016 as a means to introduce high school and middle school students to different facets of transportation, specifically transit, and then expose them to various transit career options. The focus, Drummond said, “was just to get them excited about what all the career opportunities are and think of transportation as an industry they would like to work in.”

TYA was held as a five-week summer program. One summer’s capstone project was focused on building a working monorail, and the other cohort of students learned about geographical information systems and transportation planning to map out a new monorail route for Los Angeles.

The curriculum for the program was developed in modules to make it flexible enough for other organizations to use in whole or in part, and at their own pace. It includes instructor guides and a range of potential topics that can be organized based on learning goals. The modules are infused with three themes designed to appeal to high school students: sustainability, smart transportation and social justice—the importance of ensuring that everyone has access to affordable transportation.

Read the article on page 66 of APTA’s Transit Workforce Readiness Guide.

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