Mobility experts gather for Lawrence Tech President's Symposium


This feature is courtesy of Driven, the story of how the Detroit region is leading the world in next-generation mobility.

The seventh annual President’s Symposium at Lawrence Technological University is scheduled for Thursday, Oct. 11. This year’s event gathers together a group of panelists that represent the future of mobility today.

The event, Accessibility, Mobility and Connectivity: The Edge of Future Transportation Systems, should be a busy one, says Dr. Nabil Grace, dean of the College of Engineering at Lawrence Tech. Dr. Grace predicts an overflow crowd and encourages those interested to show up at least 30 minutes early if they want a place to sit in the 300-seat capacity auditorium.

Last year’s symposium, Inclusive Technology: Seeking to Do Good, drew overflow crowds, with many having to stand in the back of the room.

“It’s a wonderful thing because it shows that people are interested in the future,” Dr. Grace says.

And it’s an important future. The symposium will examine issues of mobility and connectivity and how they affect the country’s infrastructure, which in turn affects the country’s economy. Also at issue is how autonomous vehicles interact with street infrastructure and vice versa.

Moderating the event is Michigan Department of Transportation Director Kirk T. Steudle, PE. Steudle, a 1987 Lawrence Tech alumnus in construction engineering, is retiring after 31 years with MDOT.

Panelists include Carla Bailo, president and CEO for the Center for Automotive Research; Mark Chaput, vice president of construction and operations for the American Center for Mobility; Alisyn Malek, chief operating officer and co-founder of May Mobility, Inc.; Douglas Patton, Sr., technical advisor for DENSO International America, Inc.; and Jeremy Tuggle, engineering manager of systems engineering and test, systems and technology--Chassis and Safety Division, for Continental Corp.

“We are very close to having 100 percent autonomous vehicles. That’s why it’s important to have people like these as panelists,” Dr. Grace says. “The idea is that eventually the U.S. driver won’t have to interact with the vehicle anymore. Are we ready for that?”

Learn more about the President’s Symposium at Lawrence Tech.

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