Education & Workforce Development

Various education and workforce development activities will be conducted, including:

  1. Developing and enhancing accredited degree-granting programs
  2. Providing transportation non-degree certificates
  3. Organizing professional seminars, workshops, and training courses for practicing engineers
  4. Conducting outreach and STEM activities for middle- and high-school students
  5. Developing new workforce development programs

Both undergraduate and graduate students will benefit from involvement in UTC activities. Students will directly experience the railroad industry by taking a class on railroad engineering, attending a railroad seminar, and also taking field trips to railroad facilities, and will leave this program with a stronger understanding of a field that they can work in for a career. In fact, many students have found employment in the railroad industry in part due to the skills and technical knowledge that they are taught in a railroad engineering class. These students demonstrate significant advantages in job interviews, and can quickly become leaders in their work. To foster critical thinking and research skills, both undergraduate and graduate students can participate in research projects supported by the RailTEAM. The extent of this involvement caters to the interests and capabilities of each student. By conducting research, students gain a more in-depth understanding of certain areas of interests in the railroad field, such as railroad engineering and operations. The goal of these research opportunities is for students to be able to independently solve railroad problems, therefore opening doors to higher positions of employment in the railroad field. Through the collective opportunities offered by the UTC, students are expected to gain what is necessary to enter both the railroad industry and academia.


Courses at UNLV

CEE 461 (661) - Introduction to Railroad Transportation (undergrad/grad)

This course covers aspects in railway track, vehicle motion, signals and communications, railway track maintenance, railway operations, freight operations, and passenger train operations.

CEE 462 (662) - Railroad Engineering (undergrad/grad)

This course covers design of major elements of railroad track, including track, subgrade materials, design and construction, construction costs and stability problems, drainage, ballast, cross ties, concrete and other artificial ties, rail, fastenings and other track material, track geometry, turnouts and crossings, track-train dynamics, conduct of work, and railroad right of way.

CEE 470 (670) - High Speed Rail (undergrad/grad)

This course covers high speed rail stations, tracks, traction and power, rolling stock, signals and communications, traffic organization, passenger service, and maintenance.

CEE 471 (671) - Public Transportation Systems (undergrad/grad)

This course covers analysis and evaluation of mass transit systems; their operation and management: demand and cost analysis; route design, schedules and fare policy; technology of transit systems including vehicles and structures; transit financing; impact on land use and environment.

CEE 725 - Freight Transportation (grad)

This course covers freight, commodities, facilities and operations in the major modes of the transportation system and freight planning.

CEE 726 - Railroad Operations (grad)

This course covers the dynamics of train movements, spacing trains, interlock principles, capacity, scheduling and control of railroad operations.

Courses at Virginia Tech

Rail Vehicle Dynamics (grad)

Machine Learning application for rail data analysis (grad)

Courses at the University of Delaware

Introduction to Railroads (undergraduate)

This course provides an introduction to railroads, rail transportation and railroad engineering to include high speed and conventional passenger rail, freight rail, commuter rail, heavy rail transit and light rail transit. It also addresses railroad operations, management, economics, and the role of railways in modern society. It is designed to provide a broad understanding of the different railroad departments and their roles, to include infrastructure (track, bridges, signals and communications), rolling stock (locomotives, freight cars, passenger cars, transit vehicles), and railroad operations. Engineering principles for railroad operations, train make-up, track design and railroad engineering will be presented and introduced

Railroad Engineering (Senior/Graduate)

This course introduces railroad track structures and their major components; including functions and modes of degradation and failure. It addresses static and dynamic load environments and engineering design to effectively distribute loads throughout a structure. Additionally, the program provides both theoretical and practical approaches to track design as well as useful design, optimization and maintenance recommendations for key track components.

Railroad Safety and Derailment Engineering (Senior/Graduate)

This course explores the engineering issues associated with common types of derailments, including track, equipment and operator derailments.  The specific failure mechanisms associated with key classes of derailments will be examined with the technologies available for reducing these types of derailments.

Railroad Geotechnical Engineering (Senior/Graduate)

Railway geotechnology is a relatively new field of study into the engineering behavior of track substructure. The performance and failure modes of the geotechnical layers under track are very distinct from those of the layers under a highway pavement, making railway geotechnology have a unique place in transportation engineering. The course will address the challenges associated with designing, constructing and maintaining a well-performing and long-lasting railway track from the ground up. The student will learn the methodologies and technologies needed to develop a state-of-art railway track substructure including aspects of materials, mechanics, drainage, loading, slopes, design, maintenance, measurements and management and case studies. The course will cover track substructure issues related to both heavy axle load freight and high speed passenger rail traffic

Railroad Construction Management (Senior/Graduate level) 

Short Courses, Seminars, Workshops

Short Courses, Seminars, Workshops at UNLV

  • Public Transportation System
  • High Speed Rail

Short Courses, Seminars, Workshops at Virginia Tech

  • Rail Vehicle Dynamics for Practicing Engineers

Short Courses, Seminars, Workshops at the University of Delaware

  • Management Essentials for Railroad Engineering, University of Delaware, March 20-24, 2017
  • Railroad Safety and Derailment Prevention (live +  recorded)
  • Rail Problems, Maintenance and Grinding (live + recorded)
  • Railroad Geotechnical Engineering
  • Continuously Welded Rail
  • Railroad Engineering Modules developed in conjunction with Railway industry Associations available on line.


Big Data in Railroad Engineering; University of Delaware, December 14-15, 2017

Modern Railways are making increasing use of new generation track inspection and operating technology to obtain more and more data on the condition of the track and equipment. This extensive amount of data, which includes data of increasing complexity as well as volume, has led to a condition known as “Big Data”, where the volume of data is such that traditional analysis techniques are no longer viable to efficiently make use of all of this large volume of data. Thus, important information is often buried in this “mountain” of data.  Since railways need to convert this data into useable information to help them plan their capital maintenance programs, there is a need for the application of new and improved analysis techniques to make this conversion from data into information. One such area of improved data analysis is the use of “Big Data” statistical analysis techniques. This conference is intended to introduce these new and emerging analysis techniques and to show how they can be applied to the large volume of inspection data collected by railways to improve their planning of the critical capital and maintenance programs. This year’s conference focuses on the railway’s specific needs and practical applications to date of “Big Data” analytics.

Railroad Seminar at High Schools in Las Vegas, Nevada

Tentative High Schools

  • Advanced Technologies Academy
  • Clark High School
  • Coronado High School
  • Foothill High School
  • Green Valley High School
  • Spring Valley High School
  • Legacy High School
  • Liberty High School
  • Rancho High School
  • Valley High School