Tuesday, June 5, 2018 marks the 18th year that the students of the Niagara College GIS/Geospatial Management Program will be presenting their final thesis projects. By way of background, each year roughly 35-40 students spend 10 months learning the skills that turn them into geospatial professionals. The culmination of their efforts is their thesis projects. Some are done singularly, other projects are more demanding and can have 2-3 students working on them.
At the beginning of the year, students apply to be the consultants on several projects and the clients “hire” on the students that will act as those consultants. A proposal is created and presented to the client, followed by a progress report and then the big one…. The Final Presentation! The students have worked SO hard over the course of the year spending countless hours in the lab.
Each year Geospatial Niagara visits the new class in September to offer some words of wisdom and each year the students look like deer in headlights. I tell them… “I promise you, by the end of the year, they will be amazed at the progress they’ve made.” They never dreamed they could have learned so much. In many instances, students are hired before they’ve completed the program!
The Final Presentations are open to the Public and are held in the Yerich Auditorium at the Glendale Campus of Niagara College. This posting is one of four listing the times and topics of the presentations and will also be connected to the LinkedIn accounts of the students. Each project description was supplied by the student consultants.
Since 1999-2000, the program has (including this year) completed 373 thesis projects with a total market value of over $10 million dollars! (Although no money ever changes hands).
The break down of the Business types for all of the projects are as follows: 20.6% – NGO’s, 16.2% – Municipal Governments, 14.2% – Regional Governments, 12.3% – Academia, 11.1% – Conservation Authorities, 10.3% – Private/Consulting, 7.5% – Provincial Governments, 3.1% – Federal Government, 1.7% – Law Enforcement, 1.1% – Government Agency
Tuesday, June 5, 2018
8:30 – 9:00 – Cody Pytlak – Guelph Christmas Bird Count
The Guelph Christmas Bird Count: An Online Interactive Map project is a collaboration between Pytlak Ecological Solutions, Niagara College, and Environment and Climate Change Canada. The goal of this project is the completion of an online interactive map that will allow users to view a range of survey and volunteer effort data from the Guelph Christmas Bird Count (CBC). The Guelph CBC has been held for 51 years, but there are currently no intuitive methods for volunteers or researchers to view the data.
The map will let users view data for the entire survey area, comprised of 13 sections, or view section-level data. Some of the information that users will be able to view are raw numbers of bird detections, amount of birds detected per kilometer or hour surveyed, high and low counts for both species and sections, graphs to illustrate the survey data, and volunteer effort statistics such as hours and distance spent surveying. This project will assist in growing interest in the Guelph CBC and other citizen science initiatives, provide researchers and volunteers an intuitive method to view previous survey data, and will also provide a template for other CBC regions to build and implement their own interactive mapping tools.
9:00 – 9:30 – Hayden Polski/Andrew Vsetula – Cover Crops
Cover crops have become of growing importance in the past few years and this is especially true for Ontario. The Ontario Ministry of Agricultural Farming and Rural Affairs (OMAFRA) has noted their value and importance in modern farming based on several positive outcomes they can provide. The problem is that there are currently very limited resources available to assist with farmers when any issues arise when using them.
The purpose of this project will be to provide information to Ontario farmers who wish to enhance their current knowledge of cover crops; specifically, when it comes to any issues or hazards which may arise when using them. This will be accomplished by building an online web portal which will allow users to search for and provide information regarding specific cover crops. The portal will have classified layers of information, allowing users to find what they are looking for based on specific categories.
The portal will result in an increase of available information which will be classified to ensure relevance and accuracy in the information that will be shared. It is expected that this project will improve widespread knowledge regarding cover crops and their use, encouraging increased efforts by farmers to explore them for their benefits.
9:30 – 10:00 – Logesh Pillay – NPCA Restoration Database
Niagara Peninsula Conservation Authority (NPCA) is an organization that manages urbanization projects happening in the Hamilton-Niagara region as well as in Haldimand County. It is also responsible for regulating the quality of drinking water within its jurisdiction.
The need for such a project came about due to the lack of pertinent information about restoration projects that would be relevant to the NPCA.
Hence, the goal of this project is to enhance NPCA’s services with a user-friendly version of its Restoration Database, with accompanying statistics that can be easily updated each year as new projects come along.
10:00 – 10:30 – Alia McIntosh – Lyndoch Evergreen Cemetery Database
The Lynedoch Evergreen Cemetery requires a more effective mapping method and using a Geographic Information System (GIS) can make that happen. The current map has 6 handwritten copies, each over 8 pieces of Bristol board. This method brings forth some issues including, legibility, limited space, mobility and keeping them all updated.
There are many records that can be associated with a grave and it is impossible to have all of that information for every grave on one piece of paper while showing its location at the same time. Using computer technology, it is possible to keep all of those records in one place and even access them from a geospatial map.
Having a geospatial map will streamline the record keeping process for the cemetery and most importantly, the cemetery map will be more effective and accessible. The GIS consulting team, ADM Geospatial, is proposing a plan to accomplish this goal for the Evergreen Cemetery Company. The ADM Geospatial team, with their combined GIS experience, cemetery knowledge and assistance from Niagara College, have the means to complete such a project