Tuesday, 20 May 2014

URISA's Student Competition Revolutionized for GIS-Pro 2014


Published Tuesday, May 13, 2014 11:00 am
by Wendy Nelson

In a recent development for GIS-Pro 2014: URISA’s 52nd Annual Conference taking place September 8-11, 2014 in New Orleans, the URISA Vanguard Cabinet has revitalized the traditional student presentation competition.

Help revitalize traditional poster contests by joining the Vanguard Cabinet for a showcase of recent 'maptastic' GIS student innovations. Instead of traditional printed and thumb-tacked maps, we are going completely digital. There will be a series of brief presentations (no longer than five minutes each) during the competition session on September 9th at 2:00 PM where students will compete for the "Best Presentation" cash award. Additionally, digital submissions will be accepted for students unable to attend the conference, where they can compete for additional cash prizes* in various categories. All approved submissions will be uploaded online and displayed in the common area during the conference, to allow conference attendees to vote on a "People's Choice" award. All awards will be presented to select competitors during the Wednesday morning awards ceremony at GIS-Pro 2014.

“With today’s GIS students becoming the future leaders of our industry, it’s essential to offer students a platform to continue learning, present analysis results, and get feedback to improve their skills,” said Ashley Hitt, a current URISA board member. “As young GIS professionals, the Vanguard Cabinet recognizes this and is offering more opportunities for students and other young professionals to get involved and take advantage of the opportunity.”

Students may submit a map or poster .pdf (or image file), a PowerPoint presentation, or a video walk-through of a web app., mobile app., model, or script they have developed. All submissions will be reviewed, to ensure appropriate content, and competitors will receive an email confirmation upon approval. We encourage competitors to attend the conference to present their work, but those unable to attend will still be able to compete for all but the "Best Presentation" award. All students are welcome to compete, as long as they submit evidence of at least half-time enrollment at an accredited college for the Fall 2014 term. More details, as well as the competition application form, can be found at https://sites.google.com/site/gispro2014studentcompetition/.

Additional opportunities for GIS students to get involved with the URISA GIS-Pro Conference - to be held in New Orleans, LA from September 8-11, 2014 - include a panel designed for students/young professionals and student volunteer opportunities.
Young Professional/Student Panel: This will be an educational session for students and young GIS professionals to learn more about GIS career paths, how to keep up with skills and technology changes required for more advanced positions, advice on creating effective resumes and portfolios, interview tips, and resources for open job positions. This session will take place on Tuesday, September 9 from 4-5 p.m.
Student Volunteer Opportunities: URISA strives to involve students as much as possible in its annual conference. There are a limited number of opportunities to attend the conference through a complimentary registration, in return for volunteering at the conference. An application is posted here: https://sites.google.com/site/gispro2014studentcompetition/volunteerIf you have any questions about the student competition, or would like additional information, please contact urisa.vc@gmail.com.

About URISA: URISA – Fostering Excellence in GIS – is a leading provider of learning and knowledge for the GIS community. URISA connects great ideas and great people to inspire leadership and achievement. We strive to provide exceptional educational experiences, a vibrant and connected community, and the essential resources you need to be successful in your career. URISA is a multidisciplinary association where professionals from all parts of the spatial data community come together to share concerns and ideas.

About the URISA Vanguard Cabinet: The vision of the Vanguard Cabinet is to provide students and young professionals within the geospatial profession with opportunities to further professional development and represent their interests with the URISA organization.

*URISA is seeking a total of $1,500 in sponsorship funds to award cash prizes to the top submissions in various categories. Demonstrate your commitment to future GIS leaders by sponsoring this important event. If your organization is interested in sponsoring the student competition, or would like additional information, please contact Wendy Nelson at wnelson@urisa.org.

Here is an excellent opportunity for all GIS students! https://sites.google.com/site/gispro2014studentcompetition

Please forward this to your current/future GIS students (and if you don't mind announcing the GIS-Pro conference and student competition on your department website and/or calendar of events, that would be great!). Students can submit a project they worked on this past year, or will be working on during the summer, and can compete for cash prizes*. It would be great if they could attend the GIS-Pro conference in New Orleans to present their work, but they are not required to attend in order to compete.

Also, we are in need of 10-15 student volunteers, and in return for their time they will receive complimentary conference registration (please encourage them to apply early). If they are unable to volunteer, student conference rates are still quite affordable (as low as $50).

*We also need Sponsors for this important event! If your college/university is able contribute, or if you know any companies who might be willing to sponsor, any amount would be greatly appreciated. Sponsor information, including logo and website, will be uploaded to the competition website, the GIS-Pro conference website, and will be included in the conference program and other materials. Email urisa.vc@gmail.com for more information.

Special thanks to Ryan Bowe and Wendy Nelson for forwarding this information to ASPRS SAC

Thursday, 8 May 2014

JOB POSTING: Part-time GIS and Data Management Student Contractor Needed

The Central Energy Resources Science Center located in Lakewood, Colorado is looking for a part-time (20 hours per week) student contractor. The contractor would be required to provide services in accordance with the requirements below for the period of August 1st, 2014 through August 1st, 2015 not to exceed a total of 1040 hours.

Services Required

The successful student contract candidate will perform various technically oriented tasks related to Geographic Information Systems (GIS), web content management, data management systems, and workflows and processes conducted by the Central Energy Resources Science Center. Specific tasks include:

  • Authoring, editing, and updating desktop maps as well as web enabled maps using ESRI’s ArcGIS software platform, utilizing best practices, methods and procedures outlined by the Data Management and Wyoming Landscape Conservation Initiative (WLCI) project contacts.
  • Keep current, a geographic information system (GIS) of southwest Wyoming historical oil and gas drilling activity for the Wyoming Landscape Conservation Initiative (WLCI).
  • Web mapping preparation, optimization, and processing including map caching.
  • Geospatial metadata authoring, editing, updating and quality control/quality assurance (QA/QC).
  • Geospatial web content management.
  • Publication citation database QA/QC, data entry, and management.
  • Scanning documents for Fundamental Science Practice records.


  • Experience with ArcMap, ArcCatalog and ArcToolbox
  • Experience with common GIS data formats and structures including shapefiles and geodatabases.
  • Experience with managing GIS data in a Windows computing environment.
  • Motivated problem solver who enjoys providing technical solutions to complex scientific problems.
  • At least 2 years of under-graduate level course work in a GIS or a closely related program.
  • At least 1 semester of GIS course work focusing on technical concepts and application of the ArcGIS software platform. 
  • Demonstration of current enrollment.
  • Basic programming and ArcGIS model building experience.
  • The ability to acquire and manage both public and proprietary oil and gas wells data. Includes honoring the proprietary nature of commercial databases.
  • Good communication skills and ability to teamwork.
  • Basic knowledge of web mapping standards (GeoServices REST API, WMS)
  • Basic knowledge of database management systems.
  • Basic knowledge of geospatial metadata standards


Compensation is commensurate with the level of education and experience, as follows:

  • $13.79 – $15.45 per hour for a total of 1040 hours (20 hours per week) for student with at least 2 years of college. 

Student is responsible for all costs of transportation to and from the principal duty station location. The Government does not provide housing, meals or other living expenses while working at the principal duty station. Student is also responsible for tax withholding and self-employment tax.

To apply, please send me your resume via email.


Gregory L. Gunther

Data Management Project Lead
Central Energy Resources Science Center Data Management


Denver Federal Center MS 939
PO Box 25046
Denver CO 80225

Fax: 303.236.0459
Phone: 303.236.5884
Mobile: 303.818.6043