During the summer of 2004 the University of Missouri Kansas City-Institute for Human Development hosted the first ever non-residential Kansas City Summer Transportation Institute (KCSTI) for selected high school students with and without disabilities. Of the 45 National Summer Transportation Institute programs nationwide, Kansas City’s is the first Summer Transportation Institute designed as a national model for inclusion of high school students with disabilities. To support this effort, an Inter-Modal Advisory Committee was formed that included a unique collaboration of transportation, disability, and community partners. Organizations represented on this committee included the Federal Highway Administration, the Missouri Department of Transportation, Missouri Governor’s Council on Disability, the Kansas City Area Transportation Authority, the Federal Aviation Administration, the Federal Transit Administration, the Mid America Regional Council, EITAS, the Federal Railroad Administration, the Missouri State Highway Patrol, Troop A, the American Association of People with Disabilities, YouthNet, the Greater Kansas City YMCA and area schools. This advisory committee was instrumental in supporting the design of the curriculum and planning and facilitating the numerous activities of the KCSTI.
The Kansas City Summer Transportation Institute, funded by the Federal Highway Administration, provides an exciting opportunity for high school students in the Greater Kansas City area to learn about careers in transportation. This four-week summer program includes field trips to learn about various careers, offers self-discovery activities designed to enhance teamwork and leadership skills, and provides students with an introduction to college life. This program is fully funded with no cost to the student and encourages students with and without disabilities to participate. This program has been in place for eleven years.