Cal State Fullerton civil engineering majors Daniel Do and John Stapleton are drivers of innovation when it comes to transportation research.
The two scholars are recipients of $7,500 and $10,000 fellowships, respectively, from the Dwight David Eisenhower Hispanic-Serving Institutions Fellowship Program.
The goal of the U.S. Department of Transportation-Federal Highway Administration program is to attract students to the field of transportation and research and advance transportation workforce development. Both students will attend the Transportation Research Board’s January 2016 meeting in Washington, D.C.
Do’s research focus is a futuristic concept of transportation, where cars run on magnetic strips replace than gasoline. Through his research with mentor Pratanu Ghosh, assistant professor of civil and environmental engineering, Do hopes to create durable concrete roads that will work in conjunction with magnetic strips to provide a safe, environmentally friendly, low-maintenance mode of transportation.
Stapleton’s research focus is improved slope stability on or near highways. Slopes that fail due to rainfall and earthquakes result in unsafe roads and highways.
“This research will provide a better understanding as to which slopes are safe to build on, or which ones need to be improved before roads are built,” said Stapleton, whose mentor is Binod Tiwari, professor of civil and environmental engineering.
CSUF students have received Eisenhower fellowships since 2006, with funding totaling nearly $300,000. “The grant benefits the students because they are able to obtain these funds to help them pay for their research project, as well as other school expenses,” said Sergio A. Guerra, director of the Center for Academic Support in Engineering & Computer Science.
For Stapleton, a junior who plans to work in geotechnical engineering, the award shows that his research and hard work have paid off.
“By being involved in this project, it’s helped me with my academic goals and I’ve been able to expand my knowledge of engineering and network with other professionals who are doing similar research,” said Stapleton, a member of the student teams that won first place in the 2014 and 2015 national Geo-wall competitions.
Do added that the grant will help to turn his research innovative idea into reality.
“This fellowship not only gives me the opportunity to research and learn more about how magnetic fields work, but it also gives me a chance to make the world a better place for current and future generations,” said Do, a senior who aspires to work for Caltrans. “I believe we, as a society, have the power to turn anything we desire into reality; all it takes is a spark of imagination and a passion to make our dreams come true.”