News | Introducing METRANS On the Move Opportunities Editor Lin Zhu

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Introducing METRANS On the Move Opportunities Editor Lin Zhu

Sunday, May 27, 2018

by By Priyanka Ramasamy, MSCE 2018 USC Viterbi School of Engineering

We are pleased to introduce our METRANS Opportunities Editor, Lin Zhu. Zhu was born in China and earned a Bachelor’s degree in Traffic Control Engineering from North China University of Technology at Beijing, China before coming to USC to pursue a Master of Science in Transportation Engineering. She expects to graduate in May, 2019.

Zhu began with METRANS on the Event Support team. She learned about METRANS from Rui Zhang, USC Master of Planning-Transportation student, and a Research Assistant at METRANS. “Rui highly recommended I attend the events held by METRANS; she told me it’s going to be a great way to learn more about transportation,” Zhu shared.  After attending several METRANS events and volunteering for few, METRANS Associate Director, Dr. Victoria Valentine Deguzman, encouraged her to consider additional roles at METRANS, and suggested in particular that she consider the METRANS’ mentor program.  Zhu applied, and is now mentored by Mengzhao Hu, Senior Engineer of KOA Corporation and has built a firm relationship with her mentor. She was thrilled to then be offered the position of  METRANS as Opportunities Editor, in no small part, she learned, due to her outstanding performance as a volunteer. “We are fortunate to have Lin on our student team,” said Deguzman.  “Her positive, can-do attitude is accompanied by strong organizational skills and attention to detail, she has continually exceeded our expectations, and is a wonderful addition to the METRANS family.”

Zhu has been working with METRANS team since late 2017, and has benefitted greatly from the experience. “ Under Dr. Deguzman’s guidance, I have learned valuable management skills,” she shared.  “It’s hard to step into a career without any work experience. Knowledge without mileage can be nothing. METRANS is where I can sharpen my tools and broaden my horizon. And even though I may not be able to do something really great today, I will just keep digging deeper and trying harder. The work is not always easy but I never expect it to be. I like to keep myself busy and I really enjoy the feeling of conquering challenges.”

Zhu particularly enjoys the numerous METRANS’ events offers, and mentioned that she loves the METRANS field trips and guest speaking seminars in particular. “Visiting USS Iowa last summer (METRANS Annual Fleet Week trip) was absolutely impressive and memorable. I rarely get chance to get so close to such a giant vessel. And the tour of Foothill Transit was amazing as well! As for the seminars,” she added, “I always feel excited about gaining knowledge and exchanging thoughts on urban transportation. The most recent one centered on the many functions of rail, which is such an important part of a complete transportation system. The presentation by Nate Kaplan of GoRail was thought-provoking and definitely made me want to learn more about railroad engineering.”

When thinking about her life after graduation, she said, “I’m hoping to pursue a career in the ITS (intelligent transportation system) field. During my undergraduate studies I interned for the Airport Transportation Management Department and I saw a considerable demand for ITS engineers. Now with my graduate degree and my experience with METRANS, I feel I may have earned the knowledge and experience I need to enter the field.  I should really emphasize that joining METRANS really set me apart from my peers, and I feel is where I really began my career.  I definitely cherish the opportunity. And I want to shout out a great thanks to both my mentor Mengzhao Hu and to my boss Dr. Deguzman who have provided me so many opportunities and have taught me so much.” Lin Zhu can be reached at [email protected]

About the Author:

Priyanka Ramasamy is a second-year graduate student in Transportation Engineering at the Viterbi School of Engineering and Editor in Chief of METRANS on the Move.  She holds a bachelor’s degree in Civil Engineering and is particularly interested in Traffic Design and Operations, Simulation and Network modelling to solve transportation issues. She can be reached at [email protected] and (323)-505-5441