Abertis to recognize academic excellence in Puerto Rico

Written by  //  October 28, 2013  //  Education  //  No comments

Benjamin Colucci

Benjamin Colucci

Students or alumni of accredited universities in Puerto Rico that have submitted a master or doctoral dissertation related to the management of infrastructure and transportation services this year, may qualify to receive the “abertis in Transportation and Infrastructure Management” award, company officials said.

The award, sponsored by abertis — a Spanish toll road management operator and partner in the metropistas consortium that manages the PR-22 and PR-5 highways along Puerto Rico’s northern region — will consist of a cash donation of $5,000 at the master level and of $13,000 at the doctorate level.

The award marks the first year of “Cátedra abertis” in Puerto Rico, a program that abertis, and its philanthropic arm, Fundación abertis, established last year as part of a partnership with the University of Puerto Rico.

“Encouraging research and knowledge transfer between the academic and private sectors is key to the social and economic progress of a society, and that is precisely what abertis is looking to achieve through this program,” said Benjamín Colucci, professor at the Department of Civil Engineering at the University of Puerto Rico’s Mayagüez campus (RUM), and director of Catedra abertis in Puerto Rico.

“The students who are awarded with the top prizes will contribute to find transportation solutions that will improve the quality of life of all Puerto Ricans,” he said.

The winning dissertations in Puerto Rico will go on to compete at an international level with counterparts in Chile, France and Spain, places where abertis has established the program in collaboration with universities and academic institutions since 2003.

“In Puerto Rico there is a significant and proven pool of talent in the engineering field. I invite qualified candidates to participate in this award, which will both contribute to advance the transportation infrastructure field in the island, as well as at the international level,” Colucci said.

This program supports Fundacion abertis’ mission to promote research related to the impact that great works of infrastructure can have in countries where abertis has a corporate footprint.

Interested parties have until Dec. 20 to participate. A copy of their work in print and digital formats along with a letter of intent must be submitted to Sede de la Cátedra abertis, Civil Engineering Building, Office CI-105ª, Department of Civil Engineering UPR- Mayagüez. For more information candidates may contact Colucci by email at catedra.abertis@upr.edu or by phone at 787-834-6385, 787-832-40404 x. 3393/3403

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