North Carolina State University student receives 2016 HSRC scholarship

CHAPEL HILL, N.C. (Aug. 15, 2016) ─ The winner of the 2016 Megan Cornog Memorial Highway Safety Scholarship is Yulin Deng. Yulin is a student at North Carolina State University, where she is pursuing a doctoral degree in Industrial and Systems Engineering. Her research interests include applying ergonomic knowledge to roadway and in-vehicle design for transportation safety improvement.

Currently, Yulin is investigating the effects of on-road signs on driver attention allocation and performance. Under the guidance of Dr. David Kaber, more than 100 drivers have participated in a driving simulator experiment Yulin designed to collect speed and lane deviations data in various conditions. Specifically, Yulin and her research team measure the effects of different logo panels, the use of pictorial versus text-based logo signs, and driver familiarity with signs. The team also observes drivers’ gaze patterns using an eye tracking system.

“Human factors engineering is an exciting field because it has many applications in terms of human performance and safety in the transportation system,” said Yulin. “I am pleased to be named HSRC’s 2016 Highway Safety Scholarship recipient, and plan to continue my research and investigate application of on-road design with the ultimate goal of improving safety and reducing driver distraction on our roadways in North Carolina and beyond.”

Yulin will present about her research at HSRC during a Lunch ‘N Learn session on August 31, 2016, from 12-1:30 p.m. EDT. To attend the free session in person or remotely, please RSVP to Jennifer Palcher-Silliman at by August 30.

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 safety-related areas including, but not limited to, engineering, driver behavior, planning, public health and environment. Candidates are evaluated based on a written essay, as well as academic performance, career goals, extracurricular and professional activities, and work experience.

The scholarship was named in memory of former HSRC staff member Megan Cornog, who died November 7, 2010, at her home in Carrboro, N.C., after 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 nine scholarships to graduate students in the UNC system. Learn more at