Blinn College Geographic Society to Host Fourth Annual GIS Day

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Public invited to learn about careers, everyday uses of geographic information systems

The Blinn College Geographic Society invites the community to take a closer look at the role geographic information systems play in daily life.

GIS Day will be Friday, Nov. 17, from 1pm to 4pm in the Blinn-Bryan Campus Student Center. The event is free and open to the public.

GIS systems capture, store, manipulate, analyze, manage, and present spatial or geographic data. Researchers, businesses, and government agencies use GIS in crime mapping, road networking, wastewater and storm water systems, and waste management.

“It’s easy to overlook how GIS is used all around us,” said Rhonda Reagan, Geography Professor and Geographic Society Advisor. “This is a great opportunity for our community to learn how their city’s public works departments use GIS, and for our students to learn about career opportunities in the field.”

This is the fourth year Blinn has celebrated GIS Day, which takes place during National Geography Awareness Week.

Representatives from Texas A&M, Sam Houston State, Stephen F. Austin State, and Texas State universities will give 15-minute presentations on the educational and career opportunities available to prospective geography students. Each representative will present twice beginning at 1pm.

At 1:30pm, attendees are invited to participate in the Geographic Society’s geocaching contest, in which teams of two use the GPS on their phones to locate coordinates across campus. The contest is expected to last 30 minutes, and prizes provided by local vendors, including Copy Stop, the Blinn Bookstore, and Little Caesar’s Pizza, await the winning pair.

Individuals participating in the geocaching contest should sign up prior to 1:30pm at the Geographic Society’s table located in the Student Center.

Throughout the event, Blinn alumni who have earned bachelor degrees and landed careers in the geography field will be on hand to discuss their work in the industry. Representatives from the City of Bryan, City of College Station, Brazos Valley Council of Governments, Brazos County Road and Bridge Department, Brazos Valley Groundwater Conservation District, Texas A&M Forest Service, and Chevron Corporation will answer questions regarding the use of GIS in public works.

Behind the Student Center, the public can get a closer look at a mobile command post and police cruiser from the City of Bryan.

The Blinn chapter of the Geographic Society was founded in 2000 and allows Blinn students to supplement their coursework with additional hands-on experience. Advised by Reagan and fellow professor Susan Slowey, Geographic Society students often are invited to present research at conferences and symposiums across the state.

For more information regarding GIS Day or the Geographic Society, contact Reagan at rreagan@blinn.edu.