Tag Archives: education

PUG Lifelong Learning Program

Working with the Petroleum User Group (PUG) community over the years, we have been privileged to meet many talented individuals who realize that there is no end to learning. They are always open to embracing new ideas, technologies, workflows, and relationships. And it doesn’t seem to matter where or when they discovered the value of spatial technologies, how technical these people are, or how high they may rise within their organizations—they have simply decided to be lifelong learners.

In recent conversations with several of these individuals, we collectively commented that there are now many opportunities to get more involved with the community but recognized that some of them are not as well-known as we may like to believe, nor are they corralled under a single unifying program—hence this blog post. Here we describe several community outreach and education programs available to PUG members.

PUG Membership and Involvement

Twenty-six years ago, a few people gathered in a room at Exxon to discuss how best to leverage a fledgling new technology that the company had started to apply to petroleum-based workflows. Today, the PUG community is thousands strong and spread around the globe through regional PUG chapters. Membership is loosely managed, with an open-door policy to all who are interested. Members can simply observe online or ask questions and share knowledge through the PUG website, or they can take a more active role by attending the various PUG meetings, participating in a working group on a subject area of specific interest, or serving on a regional committee. Activities of the main PUG Steering Committee and regional chapters can be found at the PUG website. We encourage you to register online through LinkedIn, join appropriate regional chapters, and become involved as much as you would like.

Educational Connections and Opportunities

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Students! Tell Your Story as Part of the International Year of Global Understanding

These days we could all use a little more understanding. As noted by Lord Anthony Giddens, former Director of the London School of Economics: “We live in the most interconnected world in history. Yet at the same time, the world is driven by conflicts, dislocations and uncertainties – an unsettling and disturbing mixture of huge opportunities and existential risks.” It is for this reason that the International Council for Science (ICSU), the International Social Science Council (ISSC) and International Council for Philosophy and Human Sciences (CIPSH) jointly established 2016 as the International Year of Global Understanding (IYGU).

The aim of IYGU has been to promote better understanding of how tangible, local actions can have truly global impacts in tackling such critical challenges as climate change, food security and migration. Although human actions have created these global challenges, human actions can also provide the best solutions. One of the founders and architects of the IYGU, Prof. Benno Werlen of the Friedrich Schiller University Jena, Germany explains: “We want to build bridges between global thinking and local action. Only when we truly understand the effects of our personal choices – for example in eating, drinking and producing – on the planet, can we make appropriate and effective changes.” Indeed, if individuals know what their day-to-day routines actually mean for the entire planet, they can take appropriate action.

So how can young people get involved? One great way is to enter the IYGU Story Maps Competition to tell their own stories of how local, everyday actions can help us all understand how to work together to solve the problems of our increasingly globalized world.

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Esri Pledges to Help Boost Digital Skills in Europe

By Michael Gould and Frank Holsmuller

According to the European Commission, 100 million Europeans have never used the Internet, one third of all workers have insufficient digital skills, and there is a possibility that we may be have as many as 750,000 IT jobs that can’t be filled with trained workers by 2020.

To help combat these issues, today the Commission hosted the launch of the Digital Skills and Jobs Coalition, a new flagship initiative bringing together multiple stakeholders and EU Member States committed to reducing the digital skills gaps in Europe.

Esri is proud to have formally pledged a GIS School Program to this initiative. The program will offer free access to the ArcGIS Online platform, especially for STEM education, and initially to 300 primary and secondary schools and vocational institutions in 10 EU member states by the end of 2017.

By giving students access to ArcGIS Online, they will be able to acquire digital skills such as:

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Yorktown High School Opens GIS Day 2016 for the Nation

Today, Wednesday, November 16th is GIS Day. Because of a quirk in class schedule, the Geography teachers at Yorktown High School in Arlington, Virginia, celebrated it Monday, November 14. Jennifer Shearin organized presentations from NGA and Esri for seven sections of AP Human Geography at YHS. Mike Cantwell, a GEOINT Officer at the National Geospatial Intelligence Agency gave 160 students an understanding of the importance of their mission. Humanitarian work in Haiti following Hurricane Matthew was showcased from http://nga.maps.arcgis.com/.

Curt Hammill and Brooke Rippy, from the Defense Team at Esri explained how the gift from Esri and Amazon to every school in America could help YHS. Brooke signed up all 160 students for ArcGIS Online accounts at www.arcgis.com. Brooke told the students how she found a job at Esri. “I was interested in Geology, Environmental Science, and Urban Planning, and realized at George Mason University that they all were joined by Geography. I’m excited to work at the company that invented GIS.”

Mike Cantwell – GEOINT Officer at NGA, Jennifer Shearin – Geography Teacher,
Brooke Rippy – Defense Team at Esri

Mike is reaching out to YHS as a part of NGA’s Partners in Education (PIE) program. He remarked, “The Human Geography students at Yorktown High School now have a better understanding of the NGA mission and how NGA uses ArcGIS to support our Intelligence Community and Department of Defense customers.”

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MOOCs Offer Significant Value

Earth Imagery at Work

Occasionally I’m disheartened when I meet someone who isn’t familiar with the term massive open online course (MOOC). But then I realize that’s a teachable moment, and I explain what MOOCs are and why they’re relevant and valuable.

MOOCs matter to GIS professionals because they help generate that content but also because they enhance participants’ geospatial skillsets while adding substance to their resumes. That’s significant value, especially in the context of today’s flagging economy.

What’s a MOOC?

A MOOC is an online course offered by a company, university, non-profit, or other provider. MOOCs are typically open to large numbers of students and are nearly always free. Those with a fee typically have a “free option” that has fewer bells and whistles.

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Visualizing Data on Asian American and Pacific Islanders

The White House Initiative on Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders (WHIAAPI) will be celebrated on Friday, October 7, 2016. Earlier this year, the Department of Education and the University of California, Riverside launched the Elevate: AAPI Data Challenge, inviting the public to show new ways to analyze, interpret, and present data about Asian American and Pacific Islanders (AAPIs).

AAPIs are the fastest growing racial group in the USA, and the most diverse. Publicly available data sets include classification by national origin, such as Chinese, Filipino, Hmong, or Native Hawaiian and Other Pacific Islander. Quality of life may be enhanced for communities when they know about and participate in federal programs, so this challenge is one way to generate new insights.

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Esri and Partners Demonstrating ArcGIS and Industry Solutions at GITEX 2016

By Richard Budden

With over 150,000 participants, GITEX is the largest technology event in the Middle East, and the third largest in the world. People attend the week long show to learn about the latest innovations, network with experts and decision makers, and discover the latest technologies being applied to every industry you can think of.

Esri will be attending the event again this year, from 16th to 20th October at Dubai’s World Trade Centre. As well as demonstrating the latest ArcGIS platform developments, this year we’ll be bringing some of our key regional partners and startups with us, all of which are leveraging ArcGIS in new and exciting ways.

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Esri Encourages its Community to Enter the AAPI Data Challenge

Showcase Your Work and Win a Trip to Washington, DC

Esri is getting the word out about an exciting opportunity to create dynamic data solutions for the Department of Education’s Asian American and Pacific Islanders (AAPI) Data Challenge.

We are challenging people to unleash the power of data by way of their own geographic analyses, visualizations, predictive models and more – to tell a compelling story. We believe new ways of exploring and boosting the visibility and utilization of data on AAPIs – helping to make it more meaningful – will inspire better understanding, insight, and action.

The challenge was announced by the White House Initiative on Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders (WHIAAPI), and AAPIData.com, a research project sponsored by the University of California, Riverside. The initiative’s aim is to improve the quality of life for Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders across the nation through increased access to, and participation in, federal programs.

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Inaugural Esri Science Symposium Crystallizes Community

Scientists Gather to Discuss the Impact of GIS in Future and Present Challenges

Esri has always embraced the intellectual domain. So when it became evident that User Conference attendees beyond traditional geographers and GIScientists could benefit from domain science targeted discussions, ideas for a special event began to form. Further deliberation produced a theme for the event — Advancing Science through GIS: Today’s Challenges and Preparing for the Future — and the foundation for Esri’s inaugural Science Symposium was laid.

Esri Chief Scientist Dawn Wright served as the Science Symposium’s organizer.

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Esri Supports Lifelong Learners

“Change is the only constant in life.” That age-old saying is truer than ever. In today’s world, rapid technological change demands that we rethink the role of education in our lives. Rather than a prelude to adulthood and careers, learning has become a way of life. User Conference participants of all ages and all stages of professional development are actively involved in learning, teaching and mentoring. In fact, lifelong learning is one thing that the diverse community of GIS users has in common.

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