GIS Day at Kent State Features Two State Officials
The second floor of the Kent Student Center will be one of the sites hosting a GIS Day event on Nov. 18 from 11 a.m.-2 p.m. The event, one of hundreds being held around the world, provides a forum for users of geographic information systems (GIS) technology to demonstrate real-world applications. The event, sponsored by Kent State University’s Department of Geography in the College of Arts and Sciences and Portage County Information Technology Services, is free and open to the public.
“This is an excellent opportunity for students to meet potential employers and see how GIS is being used by companies and government agencies across Ohio,” says Jacqueline Curtis, Ph.D., assistant professor of geography at Kent State.
The event features a student poster competition, vendor and organization exhibits, and two invited speakers from the State of Ohio. Ryan Smith, director of Unmanned Aerial Systems Operation, will speak from 12:30-1 p.m. in the Governance Chambers on the second floor of the student center. Stu Davis, state government chief information officer, will give the keynote speech from 1-1:45 p.m., followed by the student poster awards. The speakers will discuss how geospatial technologies are important to run the State of Ohio.
Faculty and student researchers in Kent State’s Department of Geography study a wide variety of GIS-related topics including social media and big data, cutting-edge field data collection techniques for natural disasters, analysis of disease spread, satellite technology for humanitarian crises, crime reduction and child health improvement in Ohio.
"GIS and geospatial technologies are at the core of enabling understanding of many of our most pressing social and environmental problems, as well as being central to improving decision-making in business and government,” Curtis says. “Unlike anytime in the past, these tools (GPS, maps, drones, etc.) are allowing scientists and policymakers to have more data and better data about a large range of issues, from the processes that create natural disasters to patterns of crime in a city.”