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The University of Wisconsin-Madison is launching a new center aimed at bolstering the Midwest transportation industry by providing training and opportunities for people to pursue transportation careers.The Midwest Transportation Workforce Center (MTWC) is one of five centers nationwide to receive a $600,000 grant from the U.S. Department of Transportation. The new center will serve Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Ohio and Wisconsin, UW-Madison officials announced yesterday."In addition to a high rate of retirements and vacancies in this field, emerging technologies, as well as environmental and climate considerations, are changing the knowledge base and skill requirements for future workers,” said Teresa Adams, a professor of civil and environmental engineering who will lead the MTWC. "The center will take a strategic approach to workforce development by engaging and facilitating partnerships between transportation industry, education and economic development."The MTWC will be housed within UW-Madison’s National Center for Freight and Infrastructure Research and Education, a center that focuses on freight issues and economic competitiveness. The MTWC team will collaborate with the other federally funded centers to form a national network aimed at advancing transportation workforce development across the nation.