Veery has temporarily moved! The Birdfreak Team is partially split for the summer as Veery spends the summer working in Jefferson City, Missouri. Join in on her adventures through a new state and answers this question: How’s the birding in mid-Missouri?
Well, although I have not gone out birding yet, I have settled in and began work. June 15 was my first day and I have decided to briefly explain what I will be up to this summer/fall.
What is GIS?
Geographic Information System (GIS) is a multidisciplinary software system for input, storage, processing and retrieval of spatial data. This sounds like a textbook definition, and it is, but it is my favorite. I have taken numerous classes about GIS while in school and have learned some of the software programs, basic applications and a whole lot about digital mapping. Now I will be putting this new knowledge to work.
This internship that I am doing is going to include two parts. Collecting data and turning that data into a digitized map. The maps are done for the Missouri Department of Natural Resource’s Hazardous Waste Program’s Brownfields/Voluntary Cleanup Program (BVCP) in an effort to increase the amount of GIS material for public use.
A brownfield is a site “where redevelopment and reuse is complicated by known or suspected contamination with hazardous substances” (BVCP). Some examples are gas stations, dry cleaners and old buildings.
The first part of the internship is simply going to a brownfield site and using Trimble GeoXT and XM GPS models to collect satellite points to be entered into the computer. The second is to add the points and create a map of the area, using ArcView 9.2 software.
This weekend I am attending the Missouri Waste Control Coalition Conference 2009 in Lake of the Ozarks, Missouri. I will be learning a lot about the BVCP and other related programs. I will also get to meet and get to know more about my co-workers, who have made me feel entirely welcome already.