Erin Bahm and Steven Parks are announced as UPS Fellows for 2024-25

The MIT Center for Transportation and Logistics (CTL) has named Erin Bahm and Steven Parks as the recipients of the UPS Fellowship for the academic year 2024–25.

Supported by a grant from the UPS Foundation, the UPS Fellowship provides financial assistance to two exceptional students annually, with one being an incoming MIT master’s student and the other an MIT doctoral student focusing on logistics, freight transportation, supply chain management, or related areas.

The UPS Fellowship aims to acknowledge and support excellence in these disciplines, and the selection process is solely based on merit. Fellows are entitled to full tuition coverage along with a monthly stipend.

“The UPS Fellowships reflect MIT CTL’s commitment to infusing innovation into practical applications, maintaining the highest academic standards,” mentioned Chris Caplice, the executive director of MIT CTL. “These fellowships, generously supported by the UPS Foundation, play a vital role in nurturing talents like Erin and Steven, who will contribute to shaping the future of the supply chain sector.”

Erin Bahm is a new addition to the MIT Supply Chain Management master’s program, bringing her expertise from her role as a senior inventory operations analyst at Target in Minneapolis, Minnesota, where she managed various perishable food categories. Her proficiency in process enhancement led to her promotion to inventory operations, where she spearheaded a project involving ordering optimization changes for over 300 vendors. Additionally, Bahm collaborated with global supply chain partners on new process initiatives to ensure accurate order volume and agile replenishment across networks.

Bahm graduated from Michigan State University with a BS in applied engineering sciences in 2020, where she also received the MIT Supply Chain Excellence Award. She furthered her education by completing a women’s leadership course at the Yale School of Management and obtaining a certificate through the MITx MicroMasters Program in Supply Chain Management. Bahm’s leadership qualities are evident through her involvement in moderating career development panels and expanding Target’s new hire mentorship program.

Steven Parks is a Ph.D. candidate in transportation engineering at MIT and serves as a research assistant at the MIT Megacity Logistics Lab in CTL. In his role, Parks led a 16-month research project with Amazon World-Wide Real Estate Operations, focusing on quantifying the congestion effects of last-mile e-commerce activities on a city scale. The outcome of the project, which involved building a traffic simulation model to estimate congestion caused by e-commerce in three major U.S. cities, resulted in recommendations to mitigate congestion footprints published in a white paper in 2024.

“Steven’s research significantly contributed to the success and academic impact of the project, benefiting both us and our partners at Amazon,” mentioned Matthias Winkenbach, Parks’s supervisor and director of the MIT Megacity Logistics Lab. “His research addresses the optimal planning of recurring vehicle routes based on demand patterns, road network characteristics, and other factors related to urban settings, posing timely and relevant questions with significant real-world implications for freight logistics and passenger transportation systems.”

Parks graduated from Santa Clara University as a Johnson Scholar with a BS in mechanical engineering and earned his MS in transportation engineering from the University of California at Berkeley. He was the recipient of the Dwight D. Eisenhower Transportation Fellowship from the U.S. Department of Transportation, the Professor Joseph M. Sussman Best Paper Prize from the journal Frontiers in the Built Environment, and secured first place at the Santa Clara University Mechanical Engineering Senior Design Conference for his work on disaster relief communications.

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