Coffee Hour with Doug Peterson | Seeking summer interns | Lots of local events


Tomaszewski.teachingmapping.webedit.Brian Tomaszewski, (Ph.D. ’08) teaching Frank Gasiriba Mbyirukira how to use smart phone-enabled mapping tools. Mbyirukira is a Congolese refugee living in the Kigeme refugee camp in Rwanda. Tomaszewski recently created and led a study abroad trip that nine Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT) students participated in. The RIT students worked with United Nations High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR) to map the Kigeme refugee camp. A key component of the trip was educational outreach back to Congolese refugees to teach them mapping skills for improving their lives.


  • Britt Eckerstrom (B.S. ’15) was drafted to the Western New York Flash of the National Women’s Soccer League (NWSL).
  • Sara Cavallo’s book review of Forest Prairie Edge: Place History in Saskatchewan was published in the most recent issue of Rural Sociology.
  • Raechel Bianchetti (Ph.D. ’14) just had a commentary come out in The Conversation on expertise in image analysis: “In sea of satellite images, experts’ eyes still needed.”
  • Jennifer Mason has had two papers accepted for publication. One in Cartography and Geographic Information Science and the other in a special issue of Spatial Cognition and Computation: An Interdisciplinary Journal.
  • Brian Swedberg (M.S. ’15) was presented with an Army Commendation Medal for Valor for his actions during deployment to Afghanistan in 2011.
  • Recent Coffee Hour speaker Qunying Huang and Guido Cervone have contributed a chapter on “Usage of Social Media and Cloud Computing during Natural Hazards,” in the book Cloud Computing for Ocean and Atmospheric Sciences.
  • Emma Gaalaas Mullaney has been awarded Penn State’s Harold F. Martin Outstanding Teaching Award for 2015-2016, a highly competitive award recognizing her skill and dedication in the classroom.
  • Justine Blanford and colleagues at the School of Epidemiology, Public Health and Preventative Medicine, University of Ottawa have published a paper on “The Sociospatial Network: Risk and the role of place in the transmission of infectious diseases” on PLOS One.
  • Justine Blanford and Fritz Kessler received Gladys Snyder awards.
  • Guido Cervone beat Yanan Xin, 5.3 to 6.2 seconds, at the first Geoinformatics and Earth Observation Laboratory sprint run event.


Coffee Hour with Doug Peterson
Eggs to die for: the uncertain future of an ancient survivor
Sturgeons are among the most ancient and enigmatic fishes found in our oceans, lakes, rivers, and estuaries, yet despite ongoing efforts to conserve their wild populations, most species are either threatened or endangered with extinction. Within the state of Georgia, for example, three of the four native species are Federally listed under the ESA, while the fourth was only recently reintroduced after being extirpated for nearly 30 years.

  • 3:30 to 5:00 p.m.
  • Refreshments are offered in 319 Walker Building at 3:30 p.m.
  • The lecture begins in 112 Walker Building at 4:00 p.m.
  • Coffee Hour To Go Webcast
  • Next week: Corina Graif

Southwestern Pennsylvania Commission (SPC) seeks summer interns
Southwestern Pennsylvania Commission (SPC) is the official Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) for the ten-county region including the City of Pittsburgh, and the counties of Allegheny, Armstrong, Beaver, Butler, Fayette, Greene, Indiana, Lawrence, Washington, and Westmoreland. SPC is seeking summer interns (May-August) to complete work in the Local Asset Management Project and Traffic Count Monitoring Program (HPMS), Multimodal Planning Group, Freight Planning Group, and Transportation Operations and Safety Group.

  • Local Asset Management and Traffic Count: Outdoor data collection throughout the 10-county Southwestern PA region, including information on local roadways, bridges, traffic signals, and other transportation assets.
  • Multimodal Planning: Assist with data collection and field observations, analysis and presentation of information for use in development of a regional Active Transportation Plan.
  • Freight Planning: Outdoor data collection throughout the 10-county Southwestern PA region, including information on local roadways, bridges and other transportation assets.
  • Traffic Signal / Safety Operations: Field work associated with our Regional Traffic Signal Program.

Candidates should be comfortable working outdoors in inclement weather and a variety of environments. Must have access to a vehicle for in-region travel and a valid driver’s license. Hourly rate of $12.50 plus travel mileage. Additional information about the Commission can be found at

Send letter of interest and resume to

Geog Alums return for Career Fair to represent TerraSim for summer internships
Alumni Evan Klauda (B.S. ’11) and Andrew Homka (B.S. ’15), from TerraSim, will be at the career fair on Wednesday, Feb 10 at booth B-13. TerraSim is looking for candidates for summer internship GIS positions. Stop by their booth for information about the positions and company.

TerraSim is looking for a highly motivated individual with a strong academic background utilizing geospatial data for analysis and visualization. The successful applicant will work with TerraSim database engineers, who provide the balance to the software team and focus on product use and application. You will work with our TerraTools and Souce Data Preparation software suites to give input on software product design, test software, and write documentation. Tasks can range from testing targeted parts of the software to creating and documenting use cases using real-world geospatial data. For more details, see
For more information about TerraSim, see

President’s Commissions for Equity Seek Applications for Membership
The Commission on Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Equity (CLGBTE), the Commission on Racial/Ethnic Diversity (CORED), and the Commission for Women (CFW) are now accepting applications for both appointed and affiliate membership. Appointed members serve three- to four-year terms (depending on the commission) and have voting privileges. Affiliate members serve one-year, renewable terms and do not have voting privileges. Appointed and affiliate terms begin on July 1, 2016. To learn more about the Commissions, and to submit an online application, please visit: The application deadline is Monday, February 29, 2016.


cat-weekfeb9The previous animal was Kiki, companion to Azita Ranjbar and Morteza Karimzadeh. The first person to purrfectly identify the grimalkin was Liz Dzwonczyk.

Who is this feline? Who are her humans? Send your guess and/or a photo of your animal companion with catitude to Don’t procatstinate.

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