Each year, NIATT honors one especially outstanding graduate student by naming that person
Students are selected based on the technical merit of their
research, academic performance, and professionalism and leadership. The US
Department of Transportation (DOT) recognizes the student-of-the-year from each
university transportation center at a special ceremony during the annual Transportation Research Board
meeting in Washington, DC. The student
also receives $1000 cash award and a trip to DC for the annual TRB
Christopher has an excellent academic record, hard work ethic, and
cheerful demeanor that has earned him respect and admiration from
everyone around him.
As an undergraduate, Christopher spent one summer in Idaho and two
summers in the Seattle area as a transportation intern at various
agencies. He earned his bachelorís and masterís degrees in civil
engineering at University of Idaho.
For his thesis work, Christopher focused his research on gap
reduction, a timing component in actuated traffic signals that allows
the gap timer to reduce from a higher to lower ceiling as a green phase
progresses. His research project applied gap reduction to stop-bar
detection, studying how it allows the signal to respond to discharging
queues. The simulation study showed a potential reduction in early
termination time, translating into smaller queue spillbacks and a safer
Christopher currently holds a one-year position as a transportation
scholar, a program managed by the National Park Foundation. He works at
North Cascades National Park studying the vulnerability of the parkís
transportation system to climate change and how the park can best adapt.
Aside from his passion for transportation, Christopher enjoys writing
music and lyrics.