Press Release: NIRPC Inspires Next Generation of Transportation Professionals

January 13, 2020


Contact:  Dominique Edwards, Public Participation Planner


NIRPC Inspires Next Generation of Transportation Professionals

LaPorte, IN – NIRPC regional planners were invited to visit students from Kesling Middle School in La Porte. Regional planners spoke to Rose Sgambelluri’s “Preparing for College and Careers” 8th grade class on the Transportation Career Cluster. Students had the opportunity to learn about NIRPC and careers in transportation in a unique and innovative way. Regional planners provided a short presentation, an interactive group activity and provided students with various resources to encourage them to explore careers in planning and transportation.

What did you want to be when you grew up? A scientist, astronaut, veterinarian, or perhaps a deep-sea diver? What about a pilot or a bus driver? When you are young, the sky is the limit and the possibilities are endless. Kids love to dream big, and as the regional planning agency for Northwest Indiana charged with helping to shape the region’s future, NIRPC encourages the region’s youth to do just that.

Rose Sgambelluri’s class is filled with students who have big dreams. After reviewing NWI 2050, the agency’s long range regional plan, Ms. Sgambelluri wanted to teach her students how to understand the connections between transportation, their daily lives, and how transportation will have an impact on her students and their families in the future. Unsure of how to break all of this information down to her students, she enlisted the help of experts — the planners who wrote NWI 2050. “The presentation was very eye-opening to the students and to me as well, said Sgambelluri.  The students especially liked the activity where they could do a little hands-on planning themselves.  The role of Transit planners and Regional Planners is crucial for the future of Northwestern Indiana.  It is exciting to see what lies ahead for the area and good to know that there is a plan in place.  “

“Connecting our youth to the environment around them is incredibly vital,” said Dominique Edwards, NIRPC’s Public Participation Planner. “Providing them with the insight and opportunity to meet professionals educates them about their options of what they might want to do in the future. We are proudly planting seeds today for the next generation of our region’s potential transportation professionals.”

If you are an educator in Northwestern Indiana in Lake, Porter or La Porte Counties and interested in an in-class presentation from NIRPC, please reach out to Dominique Edwards at

For more information and to learn more about NIRPC, follow them on social media and at

NIRPC is the Metropolitan Planning Organization and regional council of local governments for Northwest Indiana.  NIRPC’s purpose, as put forth in Indiana state statute, is to “provide a coordinative management process for Lake, Porter, and LaPorte Counties and to institute and maintain a comprehensive planning and programming process for transportation, economic development, and environmental policy.”

Last modified: January 10, 2020