Bookmark It: The Texas Transportation Institute


Several trucks driving down a highway at sunset.

The Texas A&M Transportation Institute (TTI) is one of the top transportation research agencies in the world. Located on the campus of Texas A&M University, TTI offers some of the best educational opportunities available for students who plan to seek careers in transportation. This is one program that you will want to know more about.

Juan Carlos Villa is a Program Manager at TTI. In an interview with Fast Forward, he shared some information about TTI. He also discussed some of his own transportation projects as a researcher specializing in freight, and encouraged students to explore their own career options in transportation.


Juan Carlos Villa, Texas Transportation Institute.

Click a button to watch an interview with Juan Carlos Villa:




“[TTI] does research in all areas of transportation. My particular areas of interest are freight and logistics. I’ve been doing that for over 10 years at TTI. I basically try to help public and private stakeholders move freight more efficiently.”

Juan went on to give some specific examples of his different projects. Many of them, he said, involve working with government agencies and policymakers at the state and the federal level because TTI’s experts are often sought out when there is a transportation issue to be addressed. For example, one of his projects involved working with the Texas Department of Transportation to improve freight movement across the Mexico-United States border.

“[Freight efficiency] is very important, even though sometimes we don’t realize it. By having efficient movement of freight, you can be more competitive …[and] you can produce more jobs. If you have an efficient system, products will be cheaper for you or your family and friends,” Juan explained.

But freight and logistics are just two of the many transportation subjects that students can study at Texas A&M alongside TTI’s transportation researchers.

“There are so many opportunities in transportation, because it touches everything you do on a day-to-day basis,” Juan said.

In fact, TTI spends over $60 million a year conducting cutting-edge research in all different aspects of transportation. The best part is that many of the researchers who work on these projects are also Texas A&M faculty, who are dedicated to helping students prepare for their careers in transportation. According to the TTI website:

“Over 50 TTI researchers hold joint academic positions at Texas A&M University. The academic faculty facilitates the educational mission of the Institute and help attract students into the transportation profession. Faculty relationships also provide a direct link to scientific expertise, technologies and equipment that provide a competitive edge for TTI’s research program.”

For future college students, this all adds up to TTI being one place you need to know about if you want to study transportation.

To learn more, visit TTI’s Academic Involvement page. Then, check out their home page. There you’ll get a glimpse into TTI’s mission, as well as its many different transportation-related focus areas and research topics. Trust us, there’s a lot to explore!

Make sure to check out Juan’s video, featuring great advice for students considering careers in transportation. And, as always, keep following Fast Forward for more featured transportation schools and programs!



Aaron Mack
Fast Forward: Volume 3 Issue 3 – Trucking & Logistics