SUNY Grant Supports Launch of New JCC Geographic Information Systems Course

Students in JCC’s Introduction to Environmental Science course are shown in the field with GPS units and working with the ArcMap software, mapping waypoints they collected.

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Jamestown Community College

A State University of New York Innovative Instruction Technology Grant is supporting the launch of a new course at Jamestown Community College and providing diverse opportunities for the college to advance the study of geographic information systems (GIS).

Introduction to Geographic Information Systems, a one-credit course, will be offered from 6:30-9:15 p.m. on Mondays, January 22 to February 26 on the Jamestown Campus. To register for the course, call 716.338.1018.
Students will use ArcMap software along with other mapping platforms to learn the basics of GIS and gain an understanding of the history, background, and applications of geospatial technology.

GIS involves the use of mapping software to capture, store, analyze and manage spatially referenced data. Users have the ability to visually overlay data to make connections such as soil type and crop yield or economic level and crime rates.

The $8,900 grant for JCC’s Applying GIS Technology Across the Disciplines and With Diverse Partners project is being administered by Jan Bowman, professor of biology and coordinator of JCC’s environmental science program.

Grant funds were used to purchase ArcMap GIS technology software and 3D Analyst, Geoprocessing Analyst, and Spatial Analyst extensions. The software is used in existing JCC courses including Introduction to Environmental Science and multiple levels of JCC’s Science Undergraduate Initiative – Environmental.

The grant also supports expanding the use of GIS technology to other disciplines and sharing information with community partners. Additional grant components support professional development presentations for college-wide faculty including those who teach JCC courses in regional high schools through College Connections, JCC’s concurrent enrollment program.

JCC’s Center for Continuing Education will offer non-credit introductory GIS experiences to regional employers and to area youth through Kids’ and Teens’ College programs.