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Smart Mobility Ambassador

Smart Mobility Ambassador

DriveOhio – an initiative of the Ohio Department of Transportation (ODOT) – is developing a new Smart Mobility Ambassador program for STEM early-career and youth volunteers, in collaboration with educators and community partners, to engage students of all ages in conversations about smart mobility career opportunities across Ohio. 

This program will provide high school students with professional development, and mentoring and networking opportunities, while learning about smart mobility career pathways, sharpening their coding skills, and earning volunteer hours.

DriveOhio will recruit college and high school students to volunteer to become Smart Mobility Ambassadors. We will  provide training to STEM volunteers on smart mobility content and interactive STEM coding programs, in preparation for delivery through classroom and virtual platforms, with support from DriveOhio Alliance industry experts.

Program features include:

  • On-Boarding – Once they become Ambassadors, college and high school students will have the opportunity to learn from DriveOhio and our industry partners about automated and connected vehicles, and other emerging transportation technologies. During online training sessions, students will be encouraged to ask as many questions as they’d like, to develop a broad understanding of smart mobility technologies, applications, and career opportunities. 
  • Training – After learning about automated and connected vehicles, Ambassadors will then learn about the importance of coding as a key enabler of smart mobility and an essential 21st century career skill for their generation. Ambassadors will be taught how to code with Ozobots using paper and markers, in a way that will allow them to lead younger groups of students through coding exercises during or after school. 
  • Workshops – As Ambassadors conduct the workshops (after-school or on weekends), they will be able to interact and connect with younger students in their area and develop a mentor-mentee relationship. In addition, academic organizations within the Ohio STEM Learning Network and potential employers within the DriveOhio Alliance will be able to interact and accompany the ambassadors for some of the workshops, creating good opportunities for high school students to network and practice professional skills, including presentation, communication, and teaching.

Program Benefits 

The Smart Mobility Ambassador Program will be an all-encompassing program that attempts to give high school students an opportunity to mentor younger students and improve their intangible skills to better prepare them for their professional career later in life. The program also highlights coding as an integral piece of new STEM curriculum. Coding is emphasized within the workshops because of how essential it is to the operations of many of the technologies we use today; ranging from autonomous vehicles to drone technologies and surveillance services. In addition, Ambassadors will have an opportunity to directly contribute to the ongoing development of new smart mobility content and curriculum for PreK-12 students, in collaboration with DriveOhio and our network of education partners, industry and community stakeholders.

Program benefits and outcomes include:

  • Volunteer hours, supporting high school graduation requirements
  • Increased awareness of smart mobility and transportation technologies and career opportunities
  • Development of professional skills, including presentations, communications, and etiquette
  • Networking and connections to potential employers
  • Mentoring and leadership experience