C2SMARTER Women in Transportation Series 2023-2024

Meet 2023-24's Women in Transportation

The Women in Transportation series honors distinguished women from various corners of the transportation world including industry, public sector, and academia. The hour long presentations are opportunities for women in the field to discuss their experiences and career paths with students who will soon be entering the job market themselves. 

This year, our seminar presenters are Elaine Du of AKRF, Lavanya Marla of University of Illinois Urbana Champaign, and Ilgin Guler of Penn State.

To celebrate Women's History Month, we also had the pleasure of hosting this year's Women in Transportation Panel on March 11. Moderated by NYU PhD Candidate Daphne Cornelisse and comprised of NYC DOT's Erin LaFarge, the MTA's Lisa Mae Fiedler, and Via's Gal Kramer, the panel spoke of their unique professional perspectives as women in transportation as well as broader trends in the industry.


Installment I: Elaine Du

Technical Director, Traffic & Transportation, AKRF

Elaine Du, PE is a Technical Director with AKRF in White Plains and a licensed Professional Engineer in the State of New York. She grew up in New York City and earned her bachelor’s degree in civil engineering from The Cooper Union in 2014. Her professional experience includes traffic engineering, planning, and design for large projects such as the Tappan Zee Bridge Replacement, Bayonne Bridge Raise the Roadway, and LaGuardia Airport Redevelopment. 

Elaine presented on October 17, 2023.

Installment II: Lavanya Marla

Researcher and Assistant Professor, UIUC

Professor Marla presented on February 14, 2024.

Professor Marla is an experienced Assistant Professor with a demonstrated history of working in the higher education industry. She is a strong education professional with a Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) focused in Transportation Systems from Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Professor Marla builds models and computational techniques that combine large-scale optimization, data mining, statistics, simulation to improve logistics and transportation systems and healthcare delivery systems. Also, she is interested in research on emerging economy settings.

Installment III: Ilgin Guler

Associate Professor, Penn State

S. Ilgin Guler is an Associate Professor in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at Pennsylvania State University. Her research interests include multi-modal urban traffic operations and control, intelligent transportation systems, connected and autonomous vehicles and infrastructure management. She received dual B.S. degrees from Bogazici University, Istanbul, Turkey in Civil Engineering and Industrial Engineering and Operations Research. 

Professor Guler presented on March 7, 2024.

6th Annual Women in Transportation Panel

The panel took place on March 11, 2024.

To celebrate Women’s History Month, C2SMARTER, the NYU-ITE Student chapter, and the ITE MET Section had the pleasure of hosting this year’s Women in Transportation Panel on March 11. This was the first installation of the ITE Met Section, YPT NYC and WTS Greater New York Chapter Women in Transportation Series occurring this year.

Moderated by NYU PhD Candidate Daphne Cornelisse, the panel featured three leaders in the transportation field:

  • Erin LaFarge, Director of Safety Policy at NYC DOT

  • Lisa Mae Fiedler, Acting Manager of Data/Analytics at MTA

  • Gal Kramer, Associate Principal at Via

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Over 50 rising transportation professionals attended the hour-long panel discussion focused on gender equity in the workforce and throughout global transportation systems. The panel spoke of their unique professional perspectives as women in transportation as well as broader trends in the industry, before opening up for a Q&A portion for the audience to ask their own questions. 

Read more here.