The summer period brings a wave of new interns to the RTA. This summer the agency welcomed six new interns from the Chicago region and beyond. The interns at the agency work in various departments ranging from Communications, Finance, IT, and Strategic Planning, to gain real-world experience and support the agency’s vision to provide adequate, accessible, and equitable public transit in the region.
Let’s meet this summer’s cohort:
Brendan Ryan is interning in the Regional Coordination Division of the Planning Department. A recent graduate of the University of Illinois at Chicago’s Master’s in Urban Planning and Policy (MUPP) degree, Brendan’s primary role is to support the Interagency Signage program. He has been able to redesign a Bus Connections map in the western suburbs in preparation for Pace’s new Aurora-Naperville On-Demand service.
Brendan enjoys riding transit to play location-based augmented reality games, particularly on the Niantic platform; Pokémon Go is probably the best-known example. These games encourage players to explore and map their communities and connect with people around them.
Brian Larson is interning with the Local Planning Department. Brian is pursuing a Master’s in Urban Planning and Policy (MUPP) degree at the University of Illinois Chicago. This summer, Brian worked on RTA’s Access to Transit 2024-2028 grant cycle. He developed an ArcGIS Experience Builder to compare grant applicant proposals with existing RTA service board routes and stops. He has also conducted a series of research on regional mobility and land-use patterns.
Brian enjoys using transit to visit the regional trails and go on bike rides. Whether the Lakefront Trail, Des Plaines River Trail, or the Fox River, he can catch the train and explore great natural sites on his bike.
Bryan Bravo is interning with the IT Department. Bryan is an incoming sophomore at Bentley University in Waltham, Massachusetts, studying Computer Information Systems. This summer, Bryan has assisted the IT department with creating user guides for RTA staff to use on new equipment such as Epson Projectors, Logitech Speakers, iPad Airs, and Operating Software like Windows 11. He has also assisted the IT Team with fixing computer-related issues ranging from Hardware problems such as changing batteries, replacing laptops, etc., and problems concerning Software like Microsoft Office, virtual meeting platforms, etc.
Bryan enjoys using transit to traverse the Chicago area and immerse himself in the region’s many activities.
Merwan Nur is interning with the Finance Department, supporting the treasury and comptroller departments. Merwan is a senior at Northside College Preparatory School, hoping to study Finance and Marketing in college. This summer, Merwan has worked on presentations highlighting the agency’s updated revenue and explored how the RTA trades with Bloomberg. He has also learned how to process payroll payments.
Merwan enjoys using transit to get to and from concerts and music festivals safely in Chicago. When attending events such as Lollapalooza and Summer Smash, the CTA is his preferred means of transportation.
Nooshin Javidi is interning with the Strategic and Corridor Planning Department. Nooshin is pursuing a Master’s in Urban Planning and Policy (MUPP) degree at the University of Illinois Chicago. Nooshin has been supporting the agency’s COVID-19 recovery goals by scanning variations in travel trends due to the pandemic. This summer, she has worked on identifying areas with a high degree of low-earning jobs and jobs by minorities in the RTA region. She has also assisted in analyzing equity and mobility-sensitive corridors.
Nooshin enjoy using transit to explore downtown Chicago. She enjoys walking by the river and at the lakefront and uses the CTA buses to travel to these spots.
Tegha Obire is interning with the Communications Department. Tegha is a first-year student at the University of Illinois, Chicago’s Master’s in Urban Planning and Policy (MUPP) program. In this position, Tegha has contributed to the agency’s Connections Blog, writing pieces on how to use transit to enjoy the season and various activities in Chicagoland. She has also assisted with social media messaging and drafted content highlighting some of the agency’s various ongoing projects, such as the introduction of the VanGo program and zoning code updates.
Tegha enjoys riding transit to explore the culinary wonders that Chicago’s numerous multicultural neighbourhoods have to offer.
The RTA is thrilled to welcome interns who recognize the critical role of public transit in stewarding safe, reliable, accessible public transportation that connects people to opportunity and advances equity.
The RTA hires for several non-intern, full-time positions and prides itself on diversity, equal opportunity and camaraderie among staff. If you share that vision, see current career opportunities and apply to work at the RTA.