Tuesday, October 16, 2007
Brookhaven College: Geospatial Technology Program
Today I visited Scott Sires at Brookhaven College. Scott works in the Geographic Information Systems faculty, Mathematics/Science Division. The facility I visited is in the Ellison Miles Geotechnology Institute (EMGI) and the programme Scott is involved in is the Geospatial Technology. It was a real eye opener to view the great resources available for teaching GIS at the Institute. As a year 13/14 College the Institute provides an enormous number of courses focussed on the use of GIS. Courses such as GIS for educators, GIS for golf course management, GIS for landscape management, GIS for engineers and GIS for municipalities particularly caught my attention. The Institute normally conducts the courses after 3pm and Scott has developed an excellent GIS laboratory with all the hardware and equipment one would dream about in their classroom. From what I can gather such a college is somewhere between TAFE and University in Australia and offers a stepping stone to either employment and/or University. For more information on the programmes offered at EMGI go to www.BrookhavenCollege.edu.EMGI. Whilst checking out the Brookhaven GIS courses a quick look at the College of the mainland in Texas City at http://www.com.edu/teams/cidt/pg_pro_gis.html is worthwhile to augment ones understanding of the diversity of GIS courses offered at this level.
While talking to Scott we explored issues of teacher training and the complexities of teachers embracing and in turn learning the technology. Scott emphasised the need to work from where teachers are and take well considered and achievable steps. The brochure advertising the courses refers to the opportunities in the Geospatial technology area includes those in real estate development, land use, homeland security, environmental security, social services, emergency management and municipal agencies. Go to http://www.com.edu/newsdesk/news.cfm?newsid=493 for more on the demand for GIS technicians.