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Volume 1, No. 1

Sept 2013

A Monthly Newsletter of the National Geospatial Technology Center of Excellence

Innovation in Geospatial Science and Technology Education

Empowering Colleges: Expanding the Geospatial Workforce

In this issue: GeoTech Center Refunded! Upcoming Events Introducing the PI & co-PI’s Contact the GeoTech Center Community of Practice Professional Development Mentoring GeoEd 2013 SDSU/SWC 2013

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GeoTech Center Refunded! Headquarters Moves to Louisville, KY

Upcoming Events

(please contact the GeoTech Center for additional information) Oct. 23-25 ATE PI Conf. Wash D.C. Conference attendees represent community colleges, business and industry, secondary school systems, 4-year colleges, and research and development centers covering projects in a wide variety of areas such as: information technology, engineering technology, micro- and nanotechnologies, chemical technology, biotechnology, and others. Oct. 27-30 StemTech, Atlanta, GA International conference focused on increasing student access, success, and completion in STEM. Attendees include college and university faculty, K-12 teachers, administrators, government officials, and community and business representatives involved in STEM education and information technology. Nov. 4-6 (GeoTech sponsored event) Spatial Plexus, Atlanta, GA By “inspecting wicked problems with geospatial goggles,” complexities and interdependences can be exposed, better defined, dissected, better managed through the geospatial approach and reassembled for overall improvements. Includes hands-on workshops.

Vince DiNoto, Dean of College and Systemic Initiatives of Jefferson Community and Technical College, and his 13 partners of the GeoTech Center, have been awarded a $3 million, three-year grant by the National Science Foundation to increase the number of successful learners of industry-defined geospatial information science and technology (GIST) skills and competencies. The Center will build upon the successful work of the first center, which was based in Corpus Christi, Texas. Goals of the Center: The five primary goals of the GeoTech Center are: 1) to build a community of practice between professionals from industry, government, and academia; 2) create and disseminate relevant geospatial curricula and pedagogical tools; 3) facilitate professional development opportunities for faculty and professionals; 4) provide geospatial competency assessments, create model course curricula, programs, and additional services through the Center clearinghouse; and 5) support student success in GIST education through the creation of competency protocols, career pathways, and career clusters. Ultimately, the National GeoTech Center will be a hub for both educators and industry, striving to increase the number and quality of credential earning GIST students. GIST Sometimes referred to as a “visual database”, or “data on maps,” GIST is a rapidly advancing science that allows data to be used in meaningful ways.

Approximately 80% of all data have a “spatial” or location-based component. Geospatial technology is used heavily in marketing, logistics, education, military and police, and in other areas where data and locations combine to tell a meaningful or useful story. Blending data with advanced technologies such as GPS, remote sensing, geographic information systems, and mobile technologies allows researchers and others to spot trends, maximize logistics, plot movement and much more. “It allows people to make informed decisions by pulling data together in a way they can visualize and understand,” said DiNoto. Geospatial Industry The geospatial industry continues to expand at a phenomenal rate. The U.S. Department of Labor statistics show more than 850,000 current geospatial workers with an additional 350,000 needed by 2018; GIS alone is listed in the top 10 high-growth, high wage industries. In order to meet workforce demands, among the GeoTech Center’s goals are to expand the number and quality of programs offered at two-year colleges. The center also plans to reach out to veterans, women, and underserved/underrepresented communities. “The work we will do is more critical than ever as the demand for Geospatial expertise continues to grow,” DiNoto said. “Educators and industry nationwide will benefit from this work.” 1

Introducing the PI and co-PI’s Director/PI: Vincent A. DiNoto, Jr serves as the Principal Investigator and Director of the National GeoTech Center of Excellence located in Louisville, Kentucky. Mr. DiNoto handles the daily responsibilities of the National GeoTech Center. Vince is Dean of College and Systemic Initiatives and a Professor of Physics, Astronomy and Geosciences at Jefferson Community and Technical College. He received his M.A. and B.S. from Indiana State University in Terre Haute, IN and was on the faculty at Indiana State University and Indiana University Southeast prior to coming to Jefferson. He is currently PI of the GeoTech Center and co-PI of the National Supply Chain Technology Education Center and has been co-PI of the National Information and Computer Center and director and co-PI of Kentucky Information Technology Center. His current research interests include education technologies, mapping of historical Civil War Battlefields and Water Powered Industries. He authored numerous courses and has offered them in an online delivery mode. He has written and presented numerous professional articles most recently published a work on the Two Great Armories of the United States. Vince is responsible for Goal 3 of the GeoTech Center. Associate Directors/co-PI’s: The Associate Directors are responsible for one of the Goals of the GeoTech Center as well as the Objectives and Activities of the goal. In addition the Associate Directors advise and assist the Director in the overall direction of the Center. Rodney Jackson. Rodney received an MA in Geography from East Carolina University (ECU) in 1992 and his GIS Professional certification in 2007. He became coordinator of Johnston Community College’s GIS program in 1998, took a faculty position within the Department of Geography at ECU in 2001, arrived at Central Piedmont Community College in 2006 and worked within the Geomatics & Sustainability Division. Rodney is currently the Director of Emerging Technologies at Edgecombe Community College. In addition, he is a Co-Principal Investigator of the National Geospatial Technology Center and serves on the GIS Certification Institute’s Certification Committee and its Examination Working Group. Rodney is responsible for Goal 5 of the GeoTech Center. Ann Johnson. Ann’s background includes a Bachelor and Master of Science degree in Geology. While teaching Earth Sciences, she became interested in how GIS can be used as a tool in geology and education. After attending an NSF funded workshop to help college faculty learn GIS, she developed a GIS Certificate Program at San Bernardino Valley College. In 1997 she joined ESRI as Higher Education Manager helping colleges and universities develop GIS programs. She has been Co-PI on several NSF Grants related to GIS and twoyear colleges and is a co-editor for the UCGIS Body of Knowledge and a lead on the development of the GTCM curriculum outlines for Model Courses. Ann also serves as coPI on the iGETT NSF grant to provide faculty education in remote sensing. She lives in Salmon, Idaho with husband, Robert, a dog, Siv and 4 chickens – a great place for fishing, geology and GIS. Ann is responsible for Goal 2 of the GeoTech Center. Christopher J. Semerjian. Chris is an Associate Professor of Physical Geography & GIS and the Associate Director of the Lewis F. Rogers Institute for Environmental & Spatial Analysis at the University of North Georgia. He holds a master’s degree in Physical Geography & GIS from Georgia State University and a Bachelor’s degree in Geology from the University of Georgia. He has served as a Co-PI for the GeoTech Center since its inception and has been PI on other geospatial projects. He developed the methodology used with the Geospatial Technology Competency Model to create courses and was co-lead on the first two courses. Chris is responsible for Goal 4 of the GeoTech Center.

Contact Information Members of the GeoTech team can be reached at the following email addresses: Vince DiNoto: 502-213-7280 Rodney Jackson: 252-823-5166, ext. 113 Ann Johnson: 208-894-4541 Chris Semerjian: Ken Yanow: 619-421-6700, ext. 5720 The GeoTech Center website is: This material is based on work supported by the National Science Foundation (DUE #1304591). Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the authors(s) and not necessarily those of the National Science Foundation. The GeoTech Center is a virtual center comprised of a Director, four Associate Directors, and nine Assistant Directors from institutions across the nation. The central office is located at Jefferson Community and Technical College in Louisville, KY. Jefferson Community & Technical College 1000 Community College Drive Louisville, KY 40272 (502) 213-GEOT

Ken Yanow. Ken is a Professor of Geographical Sciences, and has been at Southwestern College for the past 12 years where he teaches Physical Geography, Earth Science, GIScience, and Remote Sensing. He received his Bachelor’s degree from UC Santa Barbara in Physics, and two Master degrees (Astronomy and Geography) from San Diego State University. Professor Yanow’s primary research focus has been the recruitment and retention of underserved and underrepresented populations into geospatial technology courses and programs. Ken is responsible for Goal 1 of the GeoTech Center and the senior editor of the GeoTech Newsletter.

Next issue: Meet the Assistant Directors/Senior Team 2

Innovation in Geospatial Science and Technology Education

Building a Community of Practice

Empowering Colleges: Expanding the Geospatial Workforce

Professional Development The GeoTech Center will offer professional development (PD) opportunities for geospatial and STEM faculty. PD will include technology workshops, pedagogy workshops, and synergistic activities. All PD participants will become a part of the GeoTech Center COP. The GeoTech Center recognizes the economic stresses many institutions are presently experiencing. Therefore, the GeoTech Center will offer workshops and conferences that are regionally located or can be accessed virtually. The PD will use multiple modes to meet faculty needs; two of the workshops/conference will be held starting in the Summer of 2014: one in the east and the other in the west. The third workshop will be scheduled around National GIS Day during the fall in the southeast. Attendees will be invited to participate in virtual sessions after workshop completion. The follow-up sessions are critically important to insure that those educators attending the workshop have the chance to continue the learning process. In addition, the GeoTech Center will create and offer a series of online “classes� on emerging GIST topics and tools/techniques.

Mentoring From Building a Community of Practice (COP) focused on GIST education at two-year colleges will be a key component in the sustainability of the GeoTech Center. A COP is defined as a group of people who share a common concern, a set of problems, or interest in a topic and who come together to fulfill both individual and group goals. Professional development and mentoring will be key components of the COP plan. The COP, through the leadership of a national advisory council and input from a national visiting committee, will help foster relationships between the GIST industry, government, and educators to create a GIST professional society that will support and advance GIST education at two-year colleges. We encourage ALL geospatial educators (primary or ancillary) and geospatial professionals to join the Community. In order to register for the GeoTech Center COP, please visit the GeoTech website ( or contact: Ken Yanow Associate Director, co-PI GeoTech Center (619) 421-6700, ext. 5720

A free Mentoring Program will be implemented to assist faculty and colleges in the development of new GIST programs, updating or expanding existing programs and the alignment of programs with the GTCM using the tools created by the GeoTech Center. The mentor process will be a component of the community of practice (COP). The mentors for the second and third years will be selected through an application process and those mentees from the previous cohorts will be encouraged to apply. This will build leadership, capacity, and long-term sustainability, as well as spur growth in mentors, mentees and their institutions. The mentoring will last for one year; with ten institutions included. Mentors will be paired with mentee institutions based on location, expertise and needs. The mentor will serve as both an expert in technology as well as pedagogy and an advocate. Mentors will directly support the role of mentees by engaging faculty through technical assistance, training, campus visits and educational resources. For more information regarding the GeoTech Center Professional Development program, please contact: Vince DiNoto Jr. Director, PI GeoTech Center (502) 213-7280 For more information regarding the GeoTech Center Mentoring Program, please contact: Rich Schultz Assistant Direct/Senior Team (630) 617-3128


Innovation in Geospatial Science and Technology Education

Empowering Colleges: Expanding the Geospatial Workforce

GeoEd ‘13 The fifth annual GeoEd'13 Conference was completed on Thursday June 13, 2013. The conference was hosted at Jefferson Community and Technical College in Louisville, KY on the Southwest Campus. The conference had 13 presentations and six workshops with more than 100 unique participants. The presentations of the conference (including videos of each presentation) can be found at The site includes presentation titles and descriptions, biographical sketches of the speakers, video of the presentations as well as PowerPoint slides. Workshops were from introductory to sever, as well as pedagogy on curriculum. Presentations were on a variety of topics including ArcGIS online, GIS in STEM classes, policy use of GIST, watersheds, civil war battlefields, certifications, and micro-credentials. Plan to attend GeoEd'14 in June in Louisville. For more information, please contact Vince DiNoto (

SDSU/SWC 2013 The National Geospatial Technology Center of Excellence, in partnership with Southwestern College (SWC) and San Diego State University (SDSU) held its 5th annual Geospatial Technology Summer Workshop (July 22-24, 2013). Over the 3-day workshop, participants designed and produced geospatial curriculum that can be used within a classroom setting. Participants posted their work on “Schoology”, in a virtual group called “GIS Education, Maps, and Spatial Reasoning”. Please visit the site to see some of the work (and freely download the resources) at /44223993. Plans are already beginning for SDSU/SWC 2014, once again to be held on the campus of SDSU. For more information, please contact Ken Yanow (


(502) 213-GEOT

Newsletter September 2013  

Inaugural edition of the GeoTech Center newsletter.