I first learned about SCG while taking Jonnell’s Community Geography class in the spring of 2013. This was my first class in which I was able to work directly with a community partner on a project. I was excited to team up with the City of Syracuse and help map housing tenure, residential vacancy, and demolitions over a ten year period. As a lifelong resident of Syracuse, this project allowed me to serve my community and apply my skills in geography simultaneously. I followed the community geography trajectory by taking Jonnell’s Community GIS class in the fall of 2013 and continued to learn the many applications of GIS and how this technology can be used to assist community partners.
As an intern at SCG, I helped develop our new web-mapping application, MapSyracuse. The application allows anyone with internet access to view spatial datasets in Onondaga County and create custom maps according to their needs.
SCG has provided me with an excellent opportunity. Not only have I been able to increase my knowledge of geography and GIS, but I also have the chance to interact with community partners and build communication skills. The SCG team is friendly and willing to help teach new techniques as needed. SCG and any community geography courses are truly a great asset for any student interested in GIS and community issues.
2015 Update: I was hired by the Syracuse Metropolitan Transportation Council after graduating in 2014 as an intern and have since become a Junior Transportation Planner. As a staff member at SMTC, I work on a variety of transportation planning projects, many of which utilize and require geospatial data. Part of my responsibilities are to apply my GIS skills where needed on these projects.