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Danville native among trade club's International Student Chapter of 2015

Carondelet grad in final year studying civil engineering at Cal Poly

Danville native Monica Fiedler-Ross joined other student leaders of the Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo chapter of the Institute of Transportation Engineers (ITE) in winning the trade organization's International Student Chapter of the Year award.

"I am so proud of the Cal Poly ITE student chapter on earning this for the second year in a row," Fiedler-Ross said in an email interview. "This student chapter recognition attests to the inspiring capabilities and dedication of the officers and the reputable demeanor of the civil engineering students and the department at Cal Poly."

Fiedler-Ross, a 2012 graduate of Carondelet High School, is in her senior year studying civil engineering at Cal Poly. The 21-year-old served as the student group's firm tours coordinator in 2014-15 -- the year for which her chapter won the award.

Her leadership role involved coordinating tours of engineering offices and project sites of transportation companies throughout California, according to Fiedler-Ross.

"Since the field of civil engineering is broad, firm tours give students the opportunity to visit companies and transportation project sites throughout the entire school year so they can make a thoughtful decision when choosing between civil engineering elective classes or internship and job opportunities," she added.

The Cal Poly chapter's leadership team was honored at the ITE annual conference in August in Hollywood, Fla.

The club also won the ITE Collegiate Traffic Bowl Grand Championships this year, competing with teams from each district in Canada and the U.S.

"Winning the Traffic Bowl was the cherry on top of this year's Student Chapter of the Year award," said Anurag Pande, faculty adviser for the club. The winning question in the "Jeopardy"-style competition was "What is a sharrow?" (Answer: A lane marking that tells drivers where to expect to share the lane with bicyclists), Pande said.

The ITE is an international association of nearly 17,000 transportation professionals and more than 140 student chapters at colleges across the globe.

"Through ITE, I have learned that being involved in an professional organization's student chapter is the best way to excel in school and prepare for a career after college," Fiedler-Ross said.

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