VICKSBURG, Miss.- Ceyda Polatel, a civil engineer with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USCAE) Jacksonville District, has graduated from the U.S. Army Engineer Research and Development Center University (ERDC-U). The organization held a virtual graduation ceremony, Sept. 16, 2021, featuring project presentations from current participants to top leadership highlighting extensive research efforts from the 2021 session.
Now in its sixth year, ERDC-U pairs USACE division and district participants with relevant laboratory mentors for an in-depth project to aid the Corps and selectee’s district. Charles Downer, a research hydraulic engineer with the ERDC’s Coastal and Hydraulics Laboratory (CHL), served as the subject matter expert guiding Polatel through her research project.
Currently serving as a hydrologist in the Comprehensive Everglades Restoration Plan, Polatel is coordinating a hydrologic modeling enhancement project. This is a collaborative effort among USACE's Centers of Expertise, the Hydrologic Engineering Center and CHL, coordinated an as USACE-wide effort to enhance application of integrated groundwater–surface water modeling software for laboratory and district offices. Her project for ERDC-U is titled, “Gridded Surface/Subsurface Hydrologic Analysis (GSSHA) Hydraulic Structure Updates.”
“ERDC-U provided a unique opportunity to learn about the GSSHA code, CHL and ERDC in general,” said Polatel. “My participation in the program allowed an in-depth look at how GSSHA simulates complex hydrologic and hydraulic processes. This will be helpful in shaping future hydrologic modeling enhancement efforts to better meet Jacksonville District’s modeling needs. My experience with the program can precisely be summarized by the phrase ‘technology and knowledge transfer.’ I truly appreciate the opportunity. Our team members are looking forward to continuing information exchange between the field office and the ERDC team.”
Following congratulatory opening remarks by ERDC Director Dr. David Pittman, ERDC-U Program Manager Antisa Webb, Chief, Office of Research and Technology Transfer (ORTT), Technology, Knowledge and Outreach (TKO) Division, program co-sponsor with the Directorate of Human Capital, presented Polatel with her framed graduation certificate and commended her on efforts to assist her district.
Applications will open in October for the 2022 ERDC-U session to partner Corps division and district participants with subject matter experts at ERDC’s seven laboratories to apply and implement technical solutions during this six-month program. ERDC funds the costs of labor or travel with the district covering the participant’s other choice. For information on ERDC-U and applications, visit: https://wiki.erdc.dren.mil/ERDC_University.