Campaign puts geospatial science on the map

By on 15 May, 2019

Lizzy and Micah of Nowra Christian College accepting their awards as winners of the 2018 Geospatial Information Competition.

This is a guest post by David Massingham, communications coordinator for Destination Spatial Queensland.

Educational campaign aims to drive tertiary enrolments for geospatial science courses amid rising demand for geospatial professionals.

The demand for tertiary-qualified geospatial science professionals is growing – and now is the time to rise to meet that demand. From this need Geospatial Science was born in mid-2018: a career education marketing campaign encompassing an extensive website, social media presence and a roll-out of informative geospatial science career resources.

An initiative of Destination Spatial Queensland (DSQ), this campaign is committed to increasing the number of trained young people stepping into careers in the geospatial science industry. There has also been a focus on linking industry professionals with school students through career expos, work experience opportunities, and presentations or running activities at schools.

Due to an ongoing skills shortage, new students need to be encouraged to study this fascinating field at a tertiary level. That’s why DSQ – an industry body made up of representatives from some of the country’s foremost geospatial organisations – took inspiration in a successful campaign that continues to run in New South Wales and Victoria.

The Surveying: A Life Without Limits brand strategy, spearheaded by the Surveying Taskforce Inc. and implemented by Cookie Dough Research & Marketing, has promoted surveying as a career option for a number of years now and the results speak for themselves. The number of students enrolling in tertiary surveying studies has nearly tripled over the life of the campaign – and the hope now is that these numbers can be replicated in surveying’s sister field, geospatial science.

The comprehensive website was developed to educate young people, career advisors and members of the community on spatial science. A video, titled Intelligence to Shape Our World, was produced, and career resources created for distribution to career advisors and schools. A new three-part series of videos is currently being released, each focusing on a geospatial expert and a project they have focused on.

Work experience placements are also facilitated between interested students and geospatial industry professionals. The first Queensland student to take advantage of this work experience opportunity was Lachlan James (left), who completed a stint with the surveying team at Richardson Survey Services in Beenleigh. Lachlan was quick to confirm that the experience was a rewarding one. “I really enjoyed the week. Michael and Jeremy Richardson were great. It has increased my motivation to follow a career in surveying. Thanks for your help.”

Likewise, reports from the host firm were extremely positive. As company founder Michael Richardson puts it, “Lachlan was a nice guy and seemed to really enjoy the work and the business we are in. He is local to us and we have an association with his school.”

The search is now on to find more firms and individuals available to lend their support. DSQ is calling for expressions of interest from professionals to lend their expertise as industry ambassadors, not just in work experience scenarios, but also as presenters at career events and school presentations. To support the campaign, visit www.geospatialscience.com.au/help-promote-geospatial-science.

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