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Registration Now Open for FRA-Sponsored ‘Tracks to the Future’ Summer Youth Program

Written by Carolina Worrell, Senior Editor
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Registration is now open for the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA)-sponsored “Tracks to the Future” rail transportation and engineering summer youth program, which aims to teach students “why railroads remain the most energy-efficient transportation mode and what forms modern railroad track, equipment, and communications/control systems might take,” Michigan Technological University (MTU), which started the program, stated in a release.

The week-long hybrid program, which is open to high school students who will be enrolled in grades 9-12 in fall 2023, will take place in June and July and includes two days of virtual instruction and hands-on activities followed by a travel day, and concludes with a two-day visit to one of the program’s university locations.

The program, which began in 2012 with MTU’s Rail Transportation Program and is covered by an FRA grant that includes all program materials, plus lodging and meals for the on-site portion, has since grown to include sessions at the following six universities: University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Penn State Altoona, University of South Carolina, California State University-Fresno and the University of Mexico.

The 2023 program will include two sessions. The first will take Place June 19-23 at MTU, University of South Carolina and California State University-Fresno; the second session will take place July 17-21 at the University of New Mexico, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and Penn State-Altoona. Twenty full scholarships are available at each site.

The application process for the program will ask each participant to rank their preference for the two sessions and six available sites. Participant preference and home location will both be considered when assigning the on-site location. Click here for instructions on how to apply for the program.

Participant selection and placement to one of the two sessions and six university locations will take place in mid-April.

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