WKU group attends annual international GIS conference
- Author: Friday, July 1st, 2016
For the past 15 years in a row, a student from WKU’s GIS program has been selected for a GIS assistantship to participate in the annual Environmental Systems Research Institute (Esri) International Geographic Information Systems (GIS) User Conference at San Diego, California.
This year’s recipient is GIScience student Ryan Uthoff of Lebanon, Tennessee. He’s participating in the 38th Annual Esri User Conference working half-days during the week of June 27-30 in exchange for conference registration, workshops, meals and lodging. Esri selects 60 graduate and fourth-year undergraduate students from a pool of applicants for the competitive scholarships from universities and colleges throughout the United States. Immediately after graduating in May, Uthoff started work as a GIS Analyst for Hydromax USA in Louisville.
The conference is held annually at the San Diego Convention Center during the summer, bringing together GIS professionals, practitioners and educators from every sector to share real-life GIS experiences, practices and tips. There are also vendor and map displays from all over the world. Uthoff flew to San Diego on June 24 to begin preparation for the conference. More than 15,000 professionals from around the world attended last year’s conference and this year the number of attendees is expected to be around 17,000.
“This conference is the largest of its kind in the world,” said Kevin Cary, WKU’s GIS Center Director. “It’s a great opportunity to bring together GIS professionals and alike from every sector of GIS imaginable to discuss workflows; and it’s a great chance to meet up with fellow WKU graduates.”
Uthoff and Cary both presented at the conference a portion of Uthoff’s FUSE grant research on mapping high tunnels in Kentucky. They also had a chance to meet with recent WKU GIS graduates David Evans and Sami Almudaris. Evans, the GIS Coordinator for the City of Bardstown, was one of WKU’s first graduates in the GIScience major in 2011. Almudaris, a Geospatial Analyst with Saudi Aramco using GIS and its 3D capabilities for oil exploration, graduated from WKU’s Geoscience master’s program in 2011 and earned a Graduate Certificate in GIScience.
Also in attendance at the conference were recent graduates from WKU’s Geoscience master’s program Lamar Coats of Nashville, Tennessee, and Andy Reeder of Bowling Green, a GIS Analyst for Bowling Green Municipal Utilities (BGMU); WKU staff members Peggy McKillip, Accessions Horticulturist for the Baker Arboretum, and Tommy Woodall, Campus Infrastructure and Data Specialist for WKU’s Facilities Management and a graduate of WKU’s GIS major program; and WKU GIS graduates Becky (Tenpenny) Brown, one of WKU’s first graduates from the GIS Certificate program in 2002 and a GIS Specialist with BGMU, and Jeremy Weber, one of WKU’s first graduates to earn a GIS Minor in 2004 and Vice President of Geo Jobe, a GIS consulting firm based out of Nashville, Tennessee.
For information about applying for an Esri student assistantship, or about GIS, WKU’s GIS programs and GIS applications in business and industry, contact Kevin Cary in WKU’s Center for GIS at (270) 745-2981 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Contact: Kevin Cary, (270) 745-2981