Hello Everyone,

My name is RJ Mitchell and I’m a 3-rd year undergraduate student at Carleton University. I major in Geomatics Engineering and double-minor in Business: Entrepreneurship and Indigenous Studies. My original motivation to study geomatics was to eventually become a land surveyor, but the more I learn about the environmental applications of GIS, the more I want to do outside of surveying. I’m interested in hydrological analyses as well as flood mapping, as my home community is on the banks of the St. Lawrence river.

I’ve had opportunities last semester and this semester to earn money with my GIS skills, and I’d like to talk about this in this post. Last semester a professor within the department requested a cartography student to assist him with making a map for a project of his, and I was given the chance to get experience contracting out my services. I was tasked with making a map of safe injections sites in downtown Vancouver, which was a relatively simple task, but it was interesting taking very specific directions as to how they wanted the map to look aesthetically without any technical details. This semester, I was asked by a professor with Earth Sciences to help her install ArcMap on her computer as she was leading a workshop with her class next semester and she was feeling rusty. I’ve been helping her learn basic database management, understand the inner mechanics of how ArcMap operates, and updating the workshop manual to be current with ArcMap 10.5.1; as well as helping a Masters student with more complex labelling applications in ArcMap for thematic maps pertaining to his thesis. In all, it’s been great to have opportunities to apply my GIS knowledge and earn some money, and gaining some work-related experience before I even graduate.

I’m grateful to be selected as student associate with ECCE and I look forward to reading more about what everyone else is interested in and what kind of work is being done!