PSU hosts GIS in Action Conference

PSU hosts GIS in Action Conference

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Oregon, USA: On the first day of the 18th annual GIS in Action conference, a series of lectures, presentations and networking for professionals and students interested in geographic systems took place. Portland State University (PSU) is hosting the event, which will continue till Saturday, April 17th.

According to the GIS in Action Conference program, “Each year, ASPRS [American Society for Photogammetry and Remote Sensing] and URISA [Urban and Regional Information Systems Association] collaborate to hold this informational conference on current issues in the geospatial information community.”

President Wim Wiewel opened the conference yesterday morning as he addressed a crowd of about 75 people, citing his interest in urban planning and how it is benefited by the study of GIS. “Any institution that considers itself a steward of place needs to be aware of what there is in its area, in that place,” Wiewel said. “You all help to do that.”

When asked about his interest in GIS, Wiewel said, “It’s a very important field. There are all kinds of possibilities GIS technology opens up, and I think it shows how democratized it has become when you see how many people use it for so many purposes.”

Keith Massie, the conference co-chair, echoed Wiewel’s interest in hosting GIS in Action at PSU in the future. “[PSU] is a great new venue for the conference. I’m excited to have it here,” he said. “There are several ways GIS is used at PSU for planning, [and for] sustainability.”

David Percy, geosystems data manager for PSU’s Geology Department, helped coordinate the conference and said he was very excited to bring it to the campus. He said rooms on the second and third floors of Smith Memorial Student Union will be occupied until around 5 p.m. today with various workshops and presentations related to GIS technology, study and career opportunities.

There are about 20 kiosks in the SMSU Ballroom featuring companies that are interested in receiving students’ résumés during the event. There is a $35 registration fee to attend today’s events, which begin at 8:30 a.m., and includes a lunch break at noon.

“There is a lot of exciting study surrounding GIS and mapping fields, and I hope to see PSU continue to build a community of students interested in mapping technology,” Percy said. According to Percy, Geology students are able to share data sets that get used in thesis papers and by faculty regularly, and that the sets are an effective tool for both education and those interested in a mapping career.

Source: Daily Vanguard