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College of Engineering | June 30, 2023

Four Talented Students Make Strides in Smart Cities: Successfully Defend Master's Theses



On May 24, 2023, four talented students, Luisa Castrejón, Lauren Brown, Larissa Lara, and Tomas Mica, achieved a significant milestone by successfully defending their master's theses. The remarkable event occurred at Fakulta Dopravní (Faculty of Transportation Sciences) ČVUT v Praze in Prague, Czech Republic. These accomplished individuals have not only obtained degrees from the prestigious Czech Technical University (CTU) but also from The University of Texas at El Paso (UTEP), through their participation in a year-long study abroad program in Prague.

The four students embarked on the Dual master’s degree Program in Smart Cities, a comprehensive and interdisciplinary study program jointly offered by CTU and UTEP. This two-year, full-time program is designed to provide students with a well-versed education in the field of Smart Cities, with a particular focus on enhancing the quality of life for urban residents while efficiently utilizing available resources.

During the program, the students had the opportunity to study for one year at UTEP in El Paso, Texas, and another year at CTU in Prague. This unique educational experience allowed them to gain international perspectives and insights into the diverse approaches to developing smart and sustainable urban environments.

In recognition of their remarkable achievement, Dr. Kenith Meissner, Dean of the College of Engineering at UTEP, commended the students, stating, “This milestone not only showcases their individual talents but also highlights the collaborative efforts of CTU and UTEP in providing a world-class education in this emerging discipline. We are proud to have been part of their educational journey, and we have no doubt that they will make significant contributions to the field of Smart Cities."

"The collaboration between CTU and UTEP has provided a rich educational experience for students, enabling them to address the complex challenges of designing sustainable and technologically advanced urban environments. We are proud to witness the growth and achievements of students like Luisa, Lauren, Larissa, and Tomas, who exemplify the spirit of interdisciplinary collaboration and embody the future of Smart Cities,” added Carlos Ferregut, Ph.D. Civil Engineering Chair at UTEP.

The study structure was designed to foster interdisciplinary collaboration and learning. Students engaged in courses covering various aspects of urban development, planning, Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS), logistics, and project management. Moreover, they had the opportunity to work on a thesis under the guidance of professors from both CTU and UTEP, allowing them to delve into advanced research in their respective areas of interest.

According to Tomáš Horák, Vice Dean for International Relations of the Faculty of Transportation Sciences at CTU, the combination of expertise and perspectives from both institutions allowed the students to explore innovative approaches and contribute to innovative information in the field of Smart Cities. This collaborative mentorship enhanced their educational journey and prepared them to become future leaders in urban development.

Their exemplary work and commitment to advancing the field of Smart Cities will undoubtedly contribute to the development of sustainable, technologically advanced, and people-centric urban environments. We congratulate our students on this remarkable accomplishment and wish them continued success in their future endeavors.

For more information about Dual master’s degree program in Smart Cities Science & Engineering please visit or contact: Dr. Kelvin Cheu at

College of Engineering Communications

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