Last month, students from across Johns Hopkins University gathered at the Carey Business School's Harbor East campus to study the transportation industry's many challenges and develop possible new solutions.
The Feb. 20 event, called the Next Generation Mobility Challenge, was presented by Toyota and Net Impact, a nonprofit that supports students' search for a career with social impact. It drew undergraduate and graduate students from Johns Hopkins as well as from the University of Maryland, Morgan State University, and the Maryland Institute College of Art.
For the day-long competition, students were divided into 10 teams that worked to develop prototypes and solutions aimed at mitigating various industry issues, including:
- How to increase access to public transportation for the elderly, the disabled, and other underserved communities
- How to apply new technologies to help speed people to their destinations more efficiently and sustainably
- How emerging transportation options, like car-sharing services, help foster community
The competition culminated with each team presenting its solution to a panel of judges.
Leah Sbriscia, a Carey Global MBA student and leader of the school's Net Impact club, said the benefit of the event lies in both the approach and the makeup of the teams.
"We had a pretty diverse group, so there was a great balance of ideas," she said. "And people were challenging each other on different thoughts."
The winning team consisted of Carey students Mehr Pastakia, Christopher Schilder, and Mayriam Robles Garcia, as well as Charles Gulian, a JHU undergraduate. The team will go on to represent the region in the national Next Generation Mobility Challenge competition, to be held later this year.