UniverCity Alliance seeks student scholar to work with Madison Metro Transit

Job Description – Madison Metro Transit Operations Student Scholar

Project Title: Documenting and Optimizing Madison Metro Transit Operations

Background: Madison Metro Transit is the part of city government responsible for the operations of city bus services, including the new Bus Rapid Transit system. The Operations Department is in search of a student who can help document several standard operating procedures that have, up to this point, been informal practices. Students would meet with operations supervisors and key Metro Transit staff to understand the processes and to document these practices in a way that can be shared throughout the entire organization. There are several priority areas, including:

  • Process to follow for terminating a probationary employee (through each phase of their employment during the first year)
  • Responding to calls for assistance via the radio (accident, incident, service disruption)
  • Accident processing (both on the street and internally)
  • Documenting our feedback process
  • Worker’s comp process (for both driver and internally)
  • Reporting a safety concern and internal process of follow-up
  • Issuing, processing and follow-up of a field infraction

This is the first phase in a three-phase project, which includes documenting standard operating procedures, developing trainings to familiarize staff with these procedures, and analyzing the procedures to ensure alignment with public transit industry standards. If successful in phase one and interest aligns, the student selected for phase one work may be invited to continue into future phases of this project.

About UniverCity Alliance:

UniverCity Alliance is a coalition of faculty, staff, and students across University of Wisconsin–Madison to ensure the university is responsive to the needs of local governments. UCA brings UW–Madison and Wisconsin communities together to address local challenges through engagement, university research, and state-of-the-art problem-solving approaches. Launched with the Wisconsin Idea in mind, this program bridges university resources with community knowledge to improve sustainability, resilience, livability, and the general well-being of Wisconsin communities.


– Interview Metro Transit key operations staff about existing standard operating procedures and protocols

– Clearly document these protocols in accordance with the format and language decided upon collaboratively between the student and staff

– Offer recommendations about any protocols that are not clear or are conflicting between staff

Minimum Qualifications:

– At least junior standing

– Strong practical writing and communication skills, including documentation of flow charts

– Demonstrated ability to work in teams and on collaborative efforts

– Demonstrated commitment to continuous learning

– Demonstrated interview to interview people from many backgrounds

Preferred Qualifications:

– Interest in public transportation and local government

– Experience working with off-campus clients from a past class-based or employment-based experience

– Knowledge about process improvement

– Knowledge about human resources and employee relations

– Ability to establish and maintain collaborative relationships with faculty, staff, students, and community leaders.

Compensation: Students will receive a $2,000 stipend/scholarship at the conclusion of the project.

Commitment: Hours are flexible, and work can be done remotely. We anticipate that this project will take 5 – 10 hours per week and could be done over the semester and into the summer.

To Apply: Submit a resume and a cover letter explaining related experience doing policy research and why your experience makes you the best fit for this opportunity to Gavin Luter, luter@wisc.edu.

Questions: If a student has questions about the role, please direct them to Gavin Luter, luter@wisc.edu.

Priority Deadline: Applications received by May 1, 2024 will be given priority, though students can still submit after this deadline.