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SCTL Students Awarded Amazon Sustainability Challenge First, Second Prizes

SCTL Students Awarded Amazon Sustainability Challenge First, Second Prizes
SCTL Students Awarded Amazon Sustainability Challenge First, Second Prizes
January 15, 2022   //   

January 15, 2022 — The Master of Supply Chain Transportation & Logistics program (MSCTL) is pleased to announce that first-year students Caryn Livingston (MSCTL ’23) was awarded First Prize ($5,000 cash award) and Michael Howard (MSCTL ’23) was awarded Second Prize ($2,500 cash award) in the campus-wide UW-Amazon Sustainable Transportation Innovation Idea Challenge.

First-year student Kate Hallstead was awarded Grand Prize.

The winners shared pitches with Amazon employees at a lunch event.

The Challenge, sponsored by Amazon’s Sustainable Transportation Accelerator for Middle-Mile Program (STAMP) in collaboration with the Urban Freight Lab, invited pitch ideas to decarbonize the middle mile of the supply chain – beginning when goods enter the network, includes transportation by air, water, rail, or road, and ending when goods are assigned to a customer for delivery.

Livingston pitched “Parcel Partner”, a mobile app designed to align air passenger and cargo movements to make transportation more sustainable. Using Parcel Partner, airline passengers could be connected with parcel trailers needing to be transported to the airport at the same time. Passengers would be incentivized with free parking during their trip, and a reduction in round-trips and rideshare use lowers vehicle congestion and emissions at and around airports.

“Participating in the project was a good exercise in thinking through a logistics problem and how a potential solution would be applied in the real world,” said Livingston. “Presenting my idea to Amazon employees encouraged me to consider real-world difficulties in implementing innovative ideas and other potential use cases for the solution.”

Howard pitched “Middle Mile Relay”, a system of ZEV (Zero-Emissions Vehicle) charging point service stations designed to solve the long battery charge time and limited range of electric vehicles. Similar to a relay race, drivers would stop at the charging stations located 250 miles apart on every major highway, dropping off depleted trailers to charge and picking up fully charged trailers. The system would be emissions-zero, provide driver and shipment flexibility, and keep trailers moving with less disruption.

“I see my solution paving the way to all trucks becoming electric, and as appealing to the next generation of millennial truck drivers in North America,” said Howard.

The Challenge is part of Amazon’s Sustainable Transportation Accelerator for Middle-Mile Program (STAMP), and judges included Eleanor Bastian, Pascal Amar, Katy Newhouse, Josh Traube, Kanchana Nanduri, Chris Atkins.

The Challenge asked for ideas related to decarbonization in the middle mile of the supply chain: related to hardware or software technologies to reduce carbon emissions, methods to reduce the cost of sustainable transportation while still providing fast delivery, and partnerships with external organizations (businesses and/or nonprofits) to accelerate the transition to sustainable transportation. Scoring was based on applicability, ability to make changes across the industry, tech-economic readiness, probability of success, global applicability, timeliness, and potential to provide carbon reductions in the middle mile.


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About the Master of Supply Chain Transportation & Logistics degree program: A work-compatible hybrid online program, the Master of Supply Chain Transportation & Logistics (MSCTL) degree is designed to enable early- and mid-career professionals to advance in their careers. Our innovative curriculum provides students with a 360-degree view of all aspects of supply chain and logistics — facility design, inventory management, data analysis, risk, IT systems, business strategy, freight transport, and performance management — so students graduate ready to make evidence-based decisions and navigate complex real-world problems.