February 9, 2018

Great Departmental News this week!

The 2+2 articulations between Marshall’s geography program and Mountwest Community Technical College (MCTC) have officially been signed by President Gilbert.  With this approval, MCTC becomes the third 2+2 program to articulate with the geography program at Marshall (the other two being: Palomar College in California and Roane State Community College in Tennessee).Mountwest graduates will be able to transfer their credits into Marshall and apply them towards a B.S. in geography. Dr. Pittenger, interim Associate VP for Outreach and Dean of the Graduate School, recognizes Dr. Leonard’s efforts and leadership for coordinating with MCTC and preparing the plan of studies.

Dr. Cordoba received confirmation of the publication of his latest research article "The residential segregation of San Antonio, Texas in 1910: an analysis of ethno-racial and occupational spatial patterns with the colocation quotient" in Urban Geography. This the third publication from the San Antonio project with collaborators from the University of Washington and Rutgers-The State University of New Jersey.

Brian O’Keefe just returned from his second job interview. This is not only a great sign of his accomplishments, but it should also serve as an inspiration to future and recent graduates of Marshall’s geography program. In many ways, landing an opportunity to interview is a success on its own, even if doesn’t lead to actual employment. The market is very competitive, so to stand out from the crowd is tough, but a great chance to hone your interviewing skills and elevator pitch. Keep-up the good fight Brian!

Checkout this YouTube video touting the Marshall’s geography program https://youtu.be/OcL_NU4GEVs. Please share widely!

Finally, Punxsutawney Phil reminds you that the Marshall University Geography Club will be hosting its first meeting on Wednesday, February 14th at 2:30PM in HH 237

Academic Opportunities

1) Paid Summer Research Opportunity in Florida or Belize

This summer at the University of Central Florida, we are pleased to host the third year of our National Science Foundation Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) Site “Preparing the Next Generation of Scholars through Community GIS and Citizen Science.” Our program offers fully funded summer research experiences for at least 8 undergraduate students in Belize for 5 weeks and Orlando for two weeks.  The program is open to all U.S. students and runs June 25-August 10, 2018.  We are interdisciplinary in nature emphasizing community GIS and citizen science through mixed methods, including sketch mapping, mobile mapping applications, in-depth interviews, GIS, and spatial analysis.

We’re hosting a Facebook Live Event “Secrets to an Awesome Citizen Science GIS REU Application” on Tuesday, February 20 @ 2 pm EST. Join Dr. Hawthorne (REU PI), Dr. Hannah Torres (REU Faculty Mentor), and Lain Graham (REU Senior Research Mentor) as we give away the secrets to a successful application to our National Science Foundation (NSF) #REU Site in Orlando and Belize. Please share with your pals and have them join us. #citizensciencegis #ucfreu.  Join the discussion at https://www.facebook.com/citizensciencegis

Research opportunities: Students will work in one of three research directions with community partners and mentors from University of Central Florida, University of Belize, Georgia State University, The Hopkins Belize Village Council, and The Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History’s Caribbean Coral Reef Ecosystems Program:

Research Direction 1: Mapping disparities in flooding & disaster management

Research Direction 2: Mapping marine debris & mitigating impacts on coastal communities

Research Direction 3: Mapping island resiliency with drones and spatial storytelling (new in 2018 with additional NSF funding)

Compensation: Each REU student will receive a competitive funding package, including a $3500 research stipend, a meal allowance, free shared housing in Belize and Orlando, up to $750 in travel support to/from the REU Site, up to $750 for post-REU conference travel, and 2 research methods books.

Application process: The priority application deadline is Friday, March 2nd @ 5 PM EST.  Complete program information and application instructions can be found at http://www.citizensciencegis.org/ucf-reu-site/.

Student reflections from the field: “Challenging, emotional, fun, collaborative, thought-provoking, interesting, real-life, and eye-opening.”  These are some of the words used by students to describe our previous research program.  Check out a short video from our REU fieldwork at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K5zSFKw7F24&feature=youtu.be

Questions can be directed to:

Dr. Timothy Hawthorne: Principal Investigator, Assistant Professor of Geographic Information Systems at University of Central Florida


phone: 407.823.1030

Dr. Christy Visaggi: Co-Principal Investigator, Lecturer of Geosciences at Georgia State University


phone: 404.413.5755

2) Health Data Visualization Contest

The Health and Medical Geography Specialty Group (HMGSG) of the American Association of Geographers is made of hundreds of members worldwide, representing some of the best minds in health geography dynamics and how different environments impact health. In the first Health Data Visualization Contest, we encourage students, faculty, and other members to translate their research into meaningful and modern ways that can impact mainstream health thought. Show us your best work!

The contest opens on the fifth of February, and ends on the fifth of April. Winners will be announced at the HMGSG Business Meeting at AAG 2018.

What to Submit:

A data visualization using spatial data offering insight into some health or medical geography topic. It could be a static graphic, an interactive web page, narrative or story-telling map, etc.

We are especially interested in visualizations that explore the complex dimensions of health, as the social determinants of health (ie. access to transportation, healthcare, food, poverty, crime, and other built environment factors) make a substantial impact on population and individual health outcomes. Your visualization can focus on one topic in detail, or facilitate the exploration of multiple associations.


·         Open to any AAG (American Association of Geographers) member

·         Individual or Team Submissions Accepted (with at least 1 AAG member)

·         Health-related data must come from you or your team, open data source, etc.

·         Visualization must incorporate some “spatial” aspect or feature of the data.

·         If clinical or personal health information is used, data must be de-identified with no way of tracing back to person

Submission Protocol:

·         Submit using this form (https://goo.gl/DAQhtA)

·         Submissions should be submitted as a File (pdf, png, etc) or Link (url, github page, etc)

·         300-word maximum description of the visualization including data source documentation

Important Dates:

·         Contest Open: February 1st, 2017

·         Submission Deadline: April 1st, 2017 at midnight CST

·         Winners Announced: HMGSG Business Meeting at AAG, New Orleans


Winners will be published in the HMGG newsletter and website, and additionally promoted through our partners and the Health Research & Educational Trust, the non-profit research and education affiliate of the American Hospital Association.

3) Student Paper Competition

The Population Specialty Group (PSG) of the American Association of Geographers is sponsoring a student paper competition at the 2018 AAG meeting in New Orleans. Students are encouraged to submit a paper (between 2500 and 8000 words excluding references) on any topic of population geography.

The competition is open to current undergraduate and graduate students who have not previously won the award. Papers must be based on original work, completed as an undergraduate or graduate student. Note that both journal-length and ‘short,’ form papers are welcome to give students the chance to present work that is still in development or reporting preliminary results. To be eligible for the award, the student must be first author and present the paper at the AAG.

The PSG Student Paper Award will be made in the amount of $300. Honorable Mention prizes of $100 may also be awarded. Winners will be announced at the PSG Business Meeting (Friday, April 13th, 11:50 am; Studio 9, Marriott, 2nd Floor).

The Deadline for submission of a paper is Monday, March 26, 2018. Submit your paper by email to Chris Fowler csfowler@psu.edu.

4) Student Travel Grants

The Conference of Latin Americanist Geographers invites applications for the 2018 CLAG Travel Awards to support student travel to CLAG 2018 in Costa Rica. CLAG will offer a limited number of travel grants to students (up to $500) in support of attendance.


·         Members of CLAG before the application deadline;

·         Registration for CLAG Costa Rica 2018;

·         Submission of cover letter explaining need for travel support;

·         Submission of an extended abstract not exceeding 1,000 words summarizing research to be presented at CLAG Costa Rica 2018;

·         All awardees must provide a home address (necessary for CLAG’s IRS reporting obligations)

·         US awardees must supply a US social security number to the CLAG Treasurer before receiving the award (necessary for CLAG’s IRS reporting obligations).

·         Guidelines

·         Extended abstracts (less than 1,000 words) will be evaluated on criteria including but not limited to the following:

·         Coherent research question situated in relevant theoretical or conceptual literature;

·         Clearly described research design;

·         Cogent description of results or findings;

·         Compelling discussion of results or findings.

A selection committee will review all applications and make a recommendation to the Honors committee chair.  Awardees will be notified by March 30, 2018. The award winners will be recognized at the 2018 CLAG-LASG Business Meeting at the AAG Annual Meeting in New Orleans and on the CLAG website.

All applications should be submitted via email to Christian Brannstrom (cbrannst@geos.tamu.edu) no later than March 2, 2018 as a single document that includes the following items:

1) Evidence of registration for CLAG 2018;

2) cover letter

3) application form (attached)

4) Essay of fewer than 1,000 words.

Please save the file as “YourLastName_ CLAG_2018_Travel”. Email subject line should indicate “CLAG 2018 Travel Award Application”.

Job Opportunities

Summer Internship, City of Xenia, Xenia, OH

GIS Analyst, City of Columbus, Columbus, OH

GIS Administrator, Charter Global, Inc., Columbus, OH

GIS Forester, Lakeside Environmental Consultants, LLC-541, Cincinnati, OH

Transportation Planner, The Transit Authority of River City, Louisville, KY

GIS Analyst (Entry level), Williams Companies, Tunkhannock, PA

GIS Analyst, Apidel Technologies, Allentown, PA

GIS Technician, Gordon & Associates, Philadelphia, PA

GIS Intern, Wood, Chantilly, VA

GIS Technician, Kimley-Horn, Virginia Beach, VA

GIS Specialist, Sallyport Global, Virginia Beach, VA

GIS Analyst, Stantec Inc., Williamsburg, VA

​Should you have any questions about any of these opportunities, do not hesitate to get in contact.


The Geography Department