PacTrans-WSDOT Summer Youth Transportation Program​

What Will the Camp Look Like
Camp Schedule
The Hosts
Frequently Asked Questions

The 2023 PacTrans-WSDOT Summer High School Transportation Camp is a FREE 6-day/5-night residential camp. Two similar camps will be hosted on July 24th to 29th at WSU in Pullman and August 13th to 18th at the UW in Seattle. Apply for the location that best fits your schedule and enjoy the wonderful journey into the future of transportation. Applications submitted by May 31, 2023, will receive priority consideration. Following this deadline, applications will be considered based on space availability.

We are looking for high school students who are curious, motivated, and interested in a fun experience to expand their horizons through exploring diverse topics in the field of transportation! It is FREE to attend (but seats are limited so hurry and apply today).


Participants must be:

  • a Washington resident
  • enrolled in a Washington high school in the fall of 2023 (9th to 12th grade)
  • be able to attend the entire duration of the camp in-person
  • 2.0 GPA or higher

All students meeting above qualifications, including who identify as female or non-binary, disadvantaged youth, black, indigenous, students of color, and students with disabilities are encouraged to apply.

* Please stay tuned. The application will open in early May.

What Will the Camp Look Like?

Each camp will gather in-person for one week at either the University of Washington (UW) or Washington State University (WSU) campus, where students will be engaging in an overnight residential camp guided by university faculty and students. Our young adult Residential Counselors* will play an integral role in fostering team building and leadership development. We have implemented all necessary safety protocols to ensure the well-being of our students.
Each day will revolve around a specific theme, with roughly half of the day spent in the classroom or labs learning from renowned UW/WSU faculty and seasoned professionals from a variety of public and private transportation agencies, such as WSDOT, FHWA, and the City of Seattle. The other half of the day will be dedicated to field tours and student-led projects, enabling participants to put their newfound knowledge into practice.

* Residential Counselors will facilitate an engaging program and be with the students for the entire week. They will be certified in first aid and will be trained in CPR and first aid to ensure the students have a fun, yet safe, experience. 

Camp Schedule

Our camp schedule offers a diverse range of interactive learning opportunities, including field trips, student-led projects, and lab tours. However, please be aware that the preliminary schedule below can be subject to changes and may be modified as needed.

2023 PacTrans-WSDOT Summer High School Transportation Camp Schedule for UW Campus


Introduction to Transportation EngineeringTransportation engineering is a wide-ranging field with many different career paths, opportunities, and challenges. While it might seem like a lot, the program will make you aware of the diverse, interesting, and exciting paths that one can travel down in the world of transportation engineering.
Data makes the world go round!Informed decisions cannot take place without sufficient data supporting the proposed project, whether that be a subway line, roundabout, or bike-share program. The program will cover the data driven decision-making process, which includes data collection, management, and analysis.
Multi-Modal InfrastructureRails to Trails, bike lanes, and more! More welcoming streetscapes allow us to ditch our old ways of thinking about transportation (car-dependent) and accept a new, safer, and environmentally friendlier approach.
‘Green’ Transportation – Sustainability, Electrification, and MobilityDid you know, ~40% of emissions in Seattle came from the transportation sector in 2020? Envisioning the future of transportation is not complete without moving away from our ‘traditional’ forms of travel (internal combustion engines, single occupancy vehicles, etc.) by adopting alternative modes, fuels, and travel patterns. Biking, shared scooters, electric vehicles, and cleaner fuel will help us reduce our carbon footprint and impact.
Equity and AccessibilityMany of the cities we live in today were built by inequitable actions carried out by local, state, and federal governments. Weather that be who was forced to move from their homes to build the highway or stadium (eminent domain), or where the shipping warehouse is located (which comes with increased air pollution and noise), minority populations are more likely to be subject to less favorable actions due to their voices being diminished in the decision-making process. Moving forward, governments and engineers need to include the voices of those who were boxed out to ensure the decisions of today build a better tomorrow.
Urban Planning – Past, Present, and Future!Ever wonder why a road was built a certain way, or why the mall is located where it is, or why you are stuck in traffic? Well, you are not alone. This topic will explore the past decisions that led us to where we are and the future ones that will change how we live our lives!
Planes, Trains, and Automobiles!The modes we choose dictate a lot about where we can go, how long it takes, and how much it costs (from an economic and emission standpoint). Designing for all modes is the key to the future of transportation and the Safe System Approach.
Traffic Safety – Safe System Approach and Vision ZeroGetting from one place to another can be dangerous, that’s why the country (and the world) is uniting to rethink our approach to traffic safety. Vision Zero is a commitment to reduce traffic fatalities to 0 by enhancing existing efforts in the 4 E’s of Traffic Safety – Engineering, Education, Enforcement, and Emergency services. Through these, we can design transportation options that are safe, reliable, efficient, and for all.
Supply Chain and LogisticsHow our food gets from the farm to our plate includes an incredibly complex and intertwined network of different players working together to get raw materials, convert them into goods, and then deliver them to their final destination. This process is known as transportation logistics and the supply chain, which relies on managing the curbspace where trucks park in urban areas, the first and final mile delivery (think FedEx), and optimization to reduce travel time, fuel, and cost!
The future of transportation: Connected and Autonomous VehiclesWhen thinking of the future, one might think of flying cars that automatically navigate the complex city environment. While we aren’t quite there yet, connected and autonomous vehicles are beginning to be deployed (Cruise, Tesla) and will revolutionize transportation – once we can trust them.

Camp Hosts

Lingzi Wu, University of Washington

Lingzi Wu is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Construction Management at the University of Washington (UW) and is responsible for the day-to-day management and operations of the summer camp​​ hosted at UW campus in Seattle. As an interdisciplinary scholar, Professor Wu focuses on advancing digital transformation in construction through the integration of data analytics and complex system modeling and development of human-in-the-loop decision support systems. Professor Wu’s long practice in the interdisciplinary methods has led to her expertise in machine learning and artificial intelligence, informatics, data analytics, simulation, and automation, which all play a significant role in powering the future of engineering. Despite her focus on Construction Engineering and Management, Professor Wu has a great passion for applying the interdisciplinary method to other areas of engineering, especially transportation and infrastructure. At this summer camp, Professor Wu hopes to create an inclusive, innovative, and interactive learning environment that facilitates the students’ development of personal, technical, and transferable skills.

Jia Li, Washington State University

Jia Li is an Assistant Professor of Transportation Engineering in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at Washington State University (WSU). With expertise in intelligent transportation, traffic flow theory, and multiagent systems, he is committed to bridging academic research, real-world applications, and education in transportation engineering. Professor Li oversees the planning and day-to-day operations of the summer camp at WSU Pullman campus. He is dedicated to creating a safe, inspiring, and interactive learning experience for the young generation and promoting diversity, equity, and inclusion through this summer camp.


Supported by the Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT) and the Pacific Northwest Transportation Consortium (PacTrans), the University of Washington (UW) and Washington State University (WSU) will host the PacTrans-WSDOT Summer Transportation Camp.