Meet the 2022 NITC Students of the Year: Sadie Mae Palmatier, Melrose Pan, and Cameron Bennett

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The Outstanding Student of the Year award is presented during the Council of University Transportation Centers (CUTC) banquet at each annual meeting of the Transportation Research Board, where the U.S. Department of Transportation honors an outstanding graduate student from each UTC. Sadie Mae Palmatier will be presented with the award for NITC at this year's CUTC award ceremony. See past NITC Students of the Year.


Sadie Mae Palmatier, University of Oregon
Connect with Sadie Mae on Linkedin

Sadie Mae is a graduate student at the University Oregon’s College of Design studying for a master’s degree in Community and Regional Planning. At UO, she has worked with Urbanism Next and the Institute for Policy, Research, and Engagement on new mobility and parking management projects. She is currently a Project Manager with the Institute for Policy, Research, and Engagement and leading an update to Mid-Willamette Valley Council of Governments Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy. Her research focuses on the impacts of minimum parking requirements on housing development which is supported by the Dwight D. Eisenhower Transportation Fellowship Program. She is one of twelve NITC students to win Eisenhower Fellowships in 2023.

As the Transportation Planning Intern with WSP's Portland office, Sadie Mae has worked on the Interstate Bridge Replacement Program and helped draft and submit the Oregon Toll Program’s Low-Income Toll Report to the Oregon State Legislature. This report provides guidance to the Oregon Department of Transportation and Oregon Transportation Commission on creating an equitable toll program for all Oregonians. Prior to going back to school, Sadie Mae worked in clean energy finance in the San Francisco Bay Area and in recreation/transportation planning in Boulder County Colorado. She holds a BA from Bates College.

Next week at TRB, Sadie Mae will present her research poster, "When Minimum Parking Requirements Go Away, Does Housing Come to Stay? The Relationship Between Residential Development and the Elimination of Minimum Parking Requirements in San Francisco, CA," in Poster Session 2100, "Transportation Planning, Policies, and Processes Posters," on Monday, January 9.


Melrose M. Pan, University of Arizona
Connect with Melrose on LinkedIn

Melrose Pan is a transportation engineering researcher and incoming postdoctoral research associate at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory. She received her Ph.D. in civil engineering with an emphasis in transportation from the University of Arizona under the advisement of Dr. Alyssa Ryan. Her main area of interest is the impact of mobility services and transportation policies on travelers’ mode choice, behavioral response and equity. She is motivated by a desire to learn more about people’s decision-making processes, which she aims to accomplish through better behavior and performance modeling via emerging data sources. She hopes that her research will shed light on how mobility services and transportation programs affect safety, sustainability, and quality of life for all people in the transportation domain. Dr. Pan has led many studies and surveys funded by both public and private sectors on understanding travelers’ physical and mental barriers to use sustainable mobility options. She now serves as the research lead in the Behavior Science Subcommittee under the Transportation Research Board Standing Committee on Transportation Demand Management.

Melrose will be presenting work in three poster sessions on Monday, January 9 at TRB: 


Cameron Bennett, Portland State University
Connect with Cameron on LinkedIn

Cameron is a second-year master’s student in transportation engineering at PSU. His work as a graduate research assistant focuses on promoting and facilitating the uptake of active transportation modes. He serves as president of the PSU ITE-STEP (Students in Transportation Engineering and Planning) student group. He received Dwight David Eisenhower Transportation Fellowships presented by the U.S. Department of Transportation at the Transportation Research Board 2022 and 2023 annual meetings. His passion lies in the promotion of cycling in all its forms through engineering design, planning, policy, advocacy, and community-driven engagement. In his free time, you can usually find him moving through the mountains on a bike, vertical rock, a pair of skis, or his own two feet. 

Cameron will be presenting a poster on e-bike incentive programs in Poster Session 3096, Dwight David Eisenhower Transportation Fellowship Program Poster (Session 2), on Tuesday, January 10.

The National Institute for Transportation and Communities (NITC) is one of seven U.S. Department of Transportation national university transportation centers. NITC is a program of the Transportation Research and Education Center (TREC) at Portland State University. This PSU-led research partnership also includes the Oregon Institute of Technology, University of Arizona, University of Oregon, University of Texas at Arlington and University of Utah. We pursue our theme — improving mobility of people and goods to build strong communities — through research, education and technology transfer.

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