My decision to major in Civil Engineering was the result of a right source of inspiration, a profound decision and ability to act upon the situation. The inspiration was my cousin, who is a civil engineer and I used to be ardent and inquisitive whenever I used to visit him. The decisions to opt Science as the major in senior high school and Civil Engineering at my college level were steps forward towards fulfilling my desire.
I have always been a very dedicated and hard working student, with a vision to succeed in this highly competitive world. My family has been a source of motivation for all my endeavors in my academic career and otherwise. With my good scores in the Joint Entrance Examination, I gained admission to Department of Civil Engineering at National Institute of Technology (NIT- Tiruchirappalli), one of the most esteemed college for engineering in India.
Transportation Engineering was the most enthralling course in the curriculum. Transportation Engineering has always played an essential role in development of society. Its contribution to industrial and infrastructural sector has been invariable. Transportation planning that includes defining objectives and goals, identifying problems, generating and evaluating alternatives and developing plans has deeply fascinated me.
The fundamentals of Transportation Engineering were ingrained in me due to the courses I have taken during my under graduation: Transportation Engineering I and II, and Transportation Planning. I enhanced my analytical skills with courses such as Probability, Statistics and Linear programming, and Numerical Techniques.
The In-Plant training at Mott MacDonald during the summer of 2013 was the ignition to the engine of thirst for knowledge about the transportation planning system. Although the training mostly focused on the designing of Metro Railway Station, a brief introduction to the planning of any transportation system was alluring and the topic caught my attention. A brief encounter with the project manager discussing about transportation planning being an integral part of any civil engineering project urged my mind to lean my focus towards the subject.
I have also completed a literature review about Study of Precast Segmental Bridges under the guidance of Dr. Lakshmy Parameswaran, Senior Principal Scientist (Bridges & Structures), CSIR-CRRI. This gave me good exposure to research work and also built my confidence in working as part of a team.
I worked on my final year dissertation on Urban Speed Management System, under the guidance of Dr. S. Moses Santhakumar, Department of Civil Engineering, NIT Tiruchirappalli. The project involved identification and implementation of Intelligent Transportation System tools for the speed management in Tiruchirappalli district. It involved spot speed measurement and volume count analysis of automobiles to determine the efficiency and productivity of the Intelligent Transport System. The project incited the urge for developing deeper roots of knowledge in the subject and a motivation to take up Transportation as the major in Graduate Program.
After graduating, I started working at Shree Khodiyar Engineers. It was an opportunity put engineering knowledge into practice and an adventure to see the design from builder’s eye. As civil engineer, I worked onsite to provide engineering support and ensured conformance to design specifications for commercial and residential buildings. I prepared technical reports, contractual documents and cost estimates for bids and ongoing projects. But with limited and diminishing technical opportunities and my unfulfilled quest to gain knowledge in Transportation Engineering and work extensively on it drove me to apply for MS in Transportation Engineering.
The aforementioned projects and the professional experience have gone a long way in providing me with research problems which are an ideal mix of theory and experimentation, and in the process, have focused/directed my aspirations towards a career in research in this area of my interest.
In addition to academia, I have managed to actively engage myself in various extracurricular activities. I have held major positions of responsibility such as Vice Chairman of Civil Engineering Association, and Manager at UDAAN, a socio-cultural event organized by Festember Social Responsibility. I have also actively participated in various cultural competitions at college level. Each of these experiences has helped me hone my organizational and interpersonal skills and has improved various facets of the person I am.
My undergraduate education has laid a firm foundation about Transportation Engineering, but is seemingly just a drop in the vast ocean of knowledge in the field. My decision to pursue Master of Science in Transportation Engineering is thus, an effort to quench my thirst for knowledge. The quality of education and the plethora of research opportunities have enthralled me to take up the decision of pursuing Master of Science in U.S.A. I look upon the Masters Degree as a valuable stepping stone to the doctoral degree, which would help me in realizing these long terms research aspirations.
I am applying in University of Nevada, Las Vegas as I believe that this University can not only provide me the quality education which I seek but also ample opportunity for its practical application through research. A dedicated Transportation Research center within the campus is an astounding platform for carrying forward my research interest. The topics offered on Transportation Network and Transportation System Evaluation constitutes my field of interest. In particular, the research project on Dynamic Urban System for Transportation undertaken by Prof. Alexander Paz is akin to my final year thesis and I am looking forward to work under him. The strategically planned curriculum coupled with the highly distinguished faculty and the exciting research initiatives in my chosen field, I am sure you have a lot to offer me, and at the same time, I am confident of contributing meaningfully to the research endeavors at your University.
I believe that my strong academic credentials, previous achievements and extracurricular activities make me a strong candidate for the Master’s degree in Transportation Engineering and I sincerely hope that my application will be considered favorably.