MSTI 2010

whiteboard doodlings

The University of Maine in Orono hosted for the third time the Maine Summer Transportation Institute (MSTI) 2010 for 20 middle school students with full scholarship from July 12 – July 23, 2010 in the Foster Student Innovation Center.  The purpose of the Institute was to create awareness and stimulate interest in students to take full advantage of the opportunities that exist in the transportation industry.  The Institute was an extremely intense and structured learning opportunity for youth in the middle school systems of Maine. The objectives remained pretty much the same as they were in our first year of MSTI except for some activities that were changed to further strengthen the program.

Fourteen boys and 6 girls from 11 Maine middle schools and home school, most from the Greater Bangor area were selected for the non-residential 2 weeks program. The MSTI activities exposed students to new frontiers and adventures such as highway design, bridge design, robotics/control systems, alternative fuels, construction materials, transportation of people and cargo, transportation related laws, regulations, and safety, and career opportunities.  Focus was also on the use of Maine’s natural resources in transportation.  In addition, students participated in hands-on lab projects, safety training, computer aided design (CAD) practice, field trips to transportation museums and facilities, and engineering lab tours, and recreational activities at the Student Recreation Center.

“First, I would like to thank you, your department and the University of Maine for offering such a wonderful camp for our son, and the other lucky participants.”

Members of the Intermodal Advisory Committee from MDOT offices and other partners provided no cost exceptional hands-on activities and field trips.  Some of the University of Maine Engineering faculty and local businesses such as Bangor Airport very enthusiastically volunteered their services to the Institute.  Special highlight this year was the visit to the Maine Maritime Academy.

“I wish to thank you for the valuable experience (our son)had at the Transportation Camp this summer.  He has always had a keen interest in history.  enjoyed going to the Cole Transportation Museum, the railroad yard, the Maine Maritime Academy, and the airport.  He enjoyed building the bridge with popsicles sticks and the bridge competition.  He is one of the quietest of six children, but could not stop talking about how much he enjoyed the experience.  History and engineering are better connected for him now, and he has mentioned the possibility of studying engineering in the future .We appreciate the time and effort you and the other staff members put into this camp as it has made a difference in his view of the world. Transportation related engineering is now viewed with near equal footing as history in his eyes.”

The Institute participants received a wealth of information and gained an insight into various modes and aspects of the transportation industry, life skills, research competencies, and college preparatory requirements. The MSTI also addressed transportation workforce needs, specifically the need of students pursuing careers in engineering and technology.   The participants and their parents were very satisfied and had wonderful compliments about the Institute.  Three MSTI graduates from the past years had won top Eastern Maine Math League competition awards.

Some More Parents’ Feedback

I would like to let you know that our daughter had an absolutely awesome time at the 2010 Maine Summer Transportation Institute camp.  She thoroughly enjoyed every aspect of the camp but especially the field trips.  Her favorite field trip by far was the visit to the Challenger Center mostly because it was a “hands on” type of field trip.  She said she also thoroughly enjoyed the trip to Maine Maritime Academy, especially once she realized her dad actually attended some college there before transferring to the chemical engineering program at UMaine.  This camp is so worthwhile for so many reasons but for her it gave her a chance to do something she is good at (i.e. using her mind and learning).  There are so many camps out there for children involved in sports activities but not many for those who are not inclined to do sport (like my daughter).  The MSTI program was the perfect camp for her to attend as she “fit in” there.  Not only did she learn so much about the transportation/engineering fields, she also made some very good friends.

All in all, I feel the MSTI is a very worthy program and should be continued.  While money is tight for most businesses and families, the grant(s) awarded that allows the kids to receive scholarships is very important as I am sure many of us parents would have been hard pressed to find the funds to send our kids to a camp such as this, no matter how much we would like to send them.  Without the scholarship, she would not have been able to attend. I would like to say a big THANK YOU to everyone involved in running the camp for providing such a great opportunity for her (and the other children).

The plusses were many:

·       Great field trips;

·       Quality visits to various engineering-focused departments on the UMaine campus;

·       Highly qualified tour leaders and presenters;

·       Hands-on opportunities to help the students get a better sense for the kinds of work done by the various types of engineers;

·       Transportation;

·       And all of it provided at no cost to the camper and his/her family

As always, there are a few opportunities for improvement:

·       A minor suggestion regarding the last day and the testing of the bridges’ strength; have two measurement stations going at the same time so it doesn’t go so long.

Again, we are grateful that he was able to participate in the camp; I believe it has sparked an interest in the engineering field and we plan on having him attend the Consider Engineering program when he gets to the right age. Who knows, maybe someday he will be a Black Bear in the College of Engineering!”

My Son enjoyed this experience so much and we thank you for the experience. He learned so much during those two weeks and had such a great time. He is looking forward to next year and hopes he will be able to participate again. He was very excited every day when he returned home telling me everything he has been learning. Thank you again!!

“Overall, we had mostly positive impressions about the entire program.   (  ) had an excellent time and was sorry when it was all done after two weeks.  They flew by for him.  From our perspective, we think it was a great experience for him, and think it will provide a lot of incentive to be working hard in school this year.  I attended a similar program run by the pulp and paper foundation between my junior and senior year in high school, and for him to have an experience like this when he’s only between his 6th and 7th grade year is fantastic. I think it was great for him at that age in particular, and the fact that he placed 3rd in both bridge competitions even though he was one of youngest made him feel very proud of himself.

There was never a day when he wasn’t completely excited to be going to the camp, and he was sad to see it end.  My next oldest already says she wants to apply in two years when she finishes sixth grade.  So hopefully they’ll keep renewing the grant and you’ll be hearing from us in 2012.”

MSTI  2010 Participant’s List

First Name Last Name School
Tyler Adams William S Cohen School
Juliana Bilodeau Home school
Adam E Cline Home school
Austin Comeau Leonard Middle School
Cameron Depaola Dr. Lewis S. Libby School
Harrison Dieuveuil Veazie Community School
Jacob Emerson Leonard Middle School
Brianna Gaudett Bucksport Middle School
Lincoln Herschel Caravel Middle School
Logan Hildreth Indian Island School
Noah Ingersoll Millinocket Middle School
Zachary Kigas Veazie Community School
Gabriella Leach Bucksport Middle School
Brittany Low Bucksport Middle School
James Ross Marks Orono Middle School
James McAllian Bucksport Middle School
Malik Robinson James F Doughty School
Samantha Round Veazie Community School
Kareem Stokes Dr. Lewis S. Libby School
Abigail Tomilson Veazie Community School


MSTI 2010 Schedule

MondayJuly 12 TuesdayJuly 13 WednesdayJuly 14 ThursdayJuly 15 FridayJuly 16


Surveying-Measurement, Prof. Carlton Brown






CAD- Prof. Carlton Brown



Rec Center/Swimming

CAD- Prof. Carlton Brown

Concrete or Pavement – Prof. Will Manion




MDOT Workshop on Traffic Safety- Mr. Peter Coughlan



Rec Center/Swimming

Cole’s Transportation MuseumLunch included







Field Trip






Games (time permitted)

Maine State Museum/State House Tour

Lunch included






Field Trip

Bio Fuel and Lab Tour-Prof. Hemant Pendse


Alternate Fuel Cars- Prof. Clay Wheeler




Advanced Engineered Wood Composite Lab Tour


Bridge Building

Prof. Roberto Lopez-Anido


Rec Center/Swimming

MondayJuly 19 TuesdayJuly 20 WednesdayJuly 21 ThursdayJuly 22 FridayJuly 23
Maine Maritime Academy Tour of State of Maine, Sailing

Lunch included




Field Trip

Bangor International Airport


Lunch included


Bangor Tower


Field Trip




Rec Center/Swimming

Maine Eastern Railroad, Rockland


Lunch included




Field Trip

Cruise ControlsProf. Ashish Despande


Westpoint Bridges (Alex Hernandez)




Popsicle Bridges



Rec Center/Swimming

Camp Collage (Margaret Skalaski)

Bridge Competition




Lunch Banquet for Parents and Guardians