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The National Science Foundation's Advanced Technological Education (ATE) program has been funding innovation at two-year colleges for over twenty years. With a focus on the education of technicians for the high-technology fields that drive our nation's economy, and strong partnerships between academic institutions and industry, ATE promotes improvement in the education of science and engineering technicians at the undergraduate and secondary school levels.

To learn more about ATE, please visit the NSF ATE program home page.

Virtual GIST Program logo with NY State and globe

GIST Programs Currently Available
GIST web site 
Microcredential (workforce) || Traditional students (9 credit)
GIST Certificate (24 credits) || ​​​​​Check out the Certificate Flyer
AS Geography (GIST concentration)

New Approved Courses
Geospatial Data Acquisition and Management Flyer (Fall 2021)
Introduction to Geospatial Programming (Spring 2022)
Web Mapping Flyer (Spring 2022)

Additional MCC GIST Courses
Introduction to GIST (Digital Earth)
Introduction to Remote Sensing
Spatial Analysis and GIST
Capstone in Geospatial Technology

A.A.S. in GIST flyer (expected 2021-2022, awaiting SUNY Approval)

Meeting Workforce Needs for Skilled Geospatial Technicians through Virtual Geospatial Information Science Technology Education Award #1955256

Monroe Community College of the State University of New York
Rochester, NY

2020-2022 EVENTS

GIST Upward Bound Summer Camp
Summer 2020 (7-17-20) Agenda 
Summer 2021 (July 9, 16, 23) Workshop.pdf and Sample Activity

Geospatial Workshops for Public and College Librarians
2020 Aug 18  Agenda || Sep 3 Agenda || Oct 14 GIST Data Agenda
2021 Sept 16 (college) || Sept 23 (public)

Alumni Mentor Events including Ask Me Anything (AMA) Audio only
2020  8/26 Agenda || 9/30 AMA || 12/7 AMA 
2021  03/31 AMA || 04/28 AMA

Virtual Humanitarian Mapping Club Events
 2021 Nov 16 and Nov 18 English flyer* (400+ high school students!) Spanish Flyer* (60+)
*Collaboration with National GeoTech Center
April 5 Flyer

2021 Micro-credential Informational Events
March 25 University of Rochester's WAM​ presentation
April 10 Syracuse University Library Seminar Agenda ||PDF
May 17 Henrietta Public Library Agenda

AAG presentation April 8, 2021 (PDF)
2021 Board of Trustees Approve A.A.S. Presentation (February, 2021)
GIST Advisory Board Meeting: Dec 17, 2020 Agenda
GeoTech Center Guest discusses UAS in GEG 239 (3/16/2021)
June 8-10 GeoEd Presentation


This project aims to develop one of the nation's first Associate in Applied Science degree programs in geospatial information technology that is fully accessible both on campus and online. It is expected that the program will help meet the growing demand for geospatial technicians across Upstate New York. The degree program will be designed to provide students with equal access to state-of-the-art geospatial education, regardless of where they live. Innovative aspects of the project include customizable in-person and online learning, online internships, online mentoring, and hands-on technical support at the college library and public libraries. In addition to educating new technicians, the project will also address regional demand for on-the-job geospatial education by developing an online nine-credit micro-credential focused on topics such as data management, programming, and web mapping.

The project goal is to prepare students for more advanced Geospatial Information Science Technology careers. It plans to achieve this goal by building on the geospatial certificate program that was developed with support from a previous award from the NSF Advanced Technological Education program. Industry-identified requirements will guide improvements to existing courses and development of three new advanced courses. These courses will form the core curriculum for the new Associate in Applied Science degree and micro-credential, both of which can be earned online. Virtual geospatial internships will be designed to support rural organizations that need geospatial information, but are unable to employ a geospatial expert. The project includes research on online education. This research will include comparisons of the effectiveness online mentoring, remote internships, and library support for online learning. The project will also assess the effectiveness of the virtual internships in preparing students to meet the increasing demand for geospatial technicians who can work remotely. Additionally, the project will examine the extent to which online education can meet the needs of underserved students who may be new to online learning or who have limited broadband connections. Dissemination through social media, websites, and presentations at conferences will provide information that other colleges may use as a model for developing their own virtual technical education programs.


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