Evelyn Burr


    WTS CO Chapter Scholarship
    (Maggie Walsh Leadership Legacy Scholarship)


    University of Colorado Denver

Evelyn is a Graduate Student at University of Colorado Denver pursuing a masters in Urban and Regional Planning

My favorite part about WTS Colorado (so far) has been meeting and learning from those who have extensive experience and passion for the realm of transportation planning. I’ve made so many amazing connections that have helped me to expand my base of knowledge of transportation planning and have helped me to envision what my career will look like moving forward. 

My decision to pursue a Masters in Urban Planning with a focus on transportation was largely influenced by my first bike tour in 2016. I felt endlessly powerful in my ability to go long distances by bike and felt strongly that I wanted the share how empowering it was to travel without a personal vehicle. This inspired my appreciation for modes of transportation that afford me the opportunity to interact with the environment in more “engaged” ways. It all comes back to having the vision of cities and regions that are safe and easy to navigate for those who choose to get around without a personal vehicle. In a perfect world, I’d prefer walking as my main mode of transportation—supplemented by easy and reliable access to trains and buses. For longer trips, my perfect world would feature an amazing network of high-speed rail. 

My favorite course has been Urban Policy Analytics, taught by Manish Shirgaokar. This class leads students on a deep dive into responsible uses of data for forecasting, policy analysis, survey design, and storytelling. This course taught me how to ask better questions and emphasized the importance of using clear and precise language when designing research or analyzing statistical outputs. My dream job would exist at the intersection of research and design—a transportation and health-focused role that both works to build community capacity and contributes to the academic conversation around urban issues and solutions. 

I’m inspired by everybody who approaches life with a growth mindset and sees “failures” as opportunities to learn and grow. Seeing people pick themselves up over and over again—and coming back wiser than before—reminds me of the resilience and strength I aspire to embody. 

In my free time I enjoy skiing, sewing, and exploring main-street commercial districts and nearby residential districts by foot. I love seeing good architecture and the thoughtful interior design of shops and restaurants.  

Following graduation, I plan on taking a short break to celebrate the completion of my degree and to unwind a bit before starting my role as a Transit Planning Analyst with Kimley Horn in Denver. I’m incredibly excited to dive into my career and learn more about how cities across the country approach transit.


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