2021 HSRC Scholarship Awarded to Appalachian State University Student Pursuing Master’s in Planning
CHAPEL HILL, N.C.— The UNC Highway Safety Research Center is pleased to announce Thanh Schado is the recipient of the 2021 Megan Cornog Memorial Highway Safety Scholarship. Schado is pursuing a master’s degree in planning at Appalachian State University (ASU).
“To me, this scholarship is recognition of the passion for my academic and professional journey,” Schado said. “I hope to start my professional career in North Carolina, where I have lived for the past sixteen years, and want to dedicate my time and effort toward developing better infrastructure to ensure safety, high quality of life, and accessibility for all people.”
The 2021 scholarship recipient studied a wide range of disciplines during her undergraduate career which allowed her “to view multifaceted issues in planning, transportation, and climate change.” She is continuing to grow her expertise in planning and political science at ASU, and has impressive practical experience already.
Schado worked with the NC Department of Transportation on a project researching the safety and accessibility of connected autonomous vehicles (CAV) in rural communities and roadways. The research team recognized the potentials for CAV to provide safer, and more accessible forms of transportation for those in lower socioeconomic situations. Currently, Schado is working as a research assistant for the Office of Sustainability to develop a resiliency assessment for the entire ASU campus.
HSRC will host Schado in the spring of 2022 to discuss her research and areas of interest with staff.
“We are impressed by Thanh’s interest and commitment to understanding and improving transportation safety, infrastructure, and accessibility in North Carolina,” said HSRC Interim Co-Director, Caroline Mozingo. “This scholarship was established to support tomorrow’s leaders in the field of transportation safety, and we look forward to seeing what Thanh will accomplish as she begins her career in the field.”
The purpose of the annual Megan Cornog Memorial Highway Safety Scholarship is to foster the education and professional development of graduate students with an interest in transportation-related areas including, but not limited to, engineering, driver behavior, planning, public health, and environmental issues. Candidates are evaluated based on a written essay, as well as academic performance, career goals, extracurricular and professional activities, and work experience.
The scholarship is named in memory of a former HSRC staff member, Megan Cornog, who died November 7, 2010, at her home in Carrboro, N.C., following a courageous battle with cancer. After earning her master’s degree from UNC-Chapel Hill in May 2009, Megan began her career working as a project coordinator for HSRC, focusing on pedestrian and bicycle issues. Since establishing the scholarship in 2006, HSRC has awarded 14 scholarships to graduate students in the UNC system. For more information, visit www.hsrc.unc.edu/scholarship.