University of Vermont

2011 Student of the Year

Jonathan Maddison has been named the University Transportation Center 2011 Student of the Year. As a UTC Scholar, Maddison’s research focuses broadly on the social construction of knowledge around transportation policy issues. Working closely with his research advisor Dr. Richard Watts, Maddison conducted novel research that applies political science and media theories to understand how transportation issues are framed in the national news media. This research has resulted in two journal articles where Maddison is the lead author (Source Diversity in News Media Coverage of Motor Vehicle Emissions 2000-2008; and The Technology Fix as a Frame in Media Debates about Tailpipe Emissions). “The TRC gave my advisor and I the support to study transportation from an alternative perspective; it's not every day that transportation researchers study the social construction of transportation policy,” he stated.


Maddison began pursuing a Masters in Public Administration at the University of Vermont in September 2009 after completing a bachelor’s degree in Community and International Development. During his studies, Maddison worked as research assistant at the Transportation Research Center. “The TRC provided an engaging interdisciplinary environment in which I regularly gained insight and ideas from staff researchers, affiliated professors, invited guests and students with a diversity of perspectives,” he said. In addition to this work, he independently partnered with the American Pain Foundation on a policy project to study traffic safety and the use of pain medications.  The study focused on obstacles and solutions for driving dependency for those requiring medication due to severe pain.


Maddison is currently living in Ithaca, NY where he is working part-time for the Americorp and American Red Cross helping communities in New York become more prepared for disasters. He also is continuing to conduct research as an independent research consultant.