Getting to know the Higher Education Group in Education and Research

November 6, 2014 Angela Alexander

The Education and Research Group at Esri Canada includes associates who support educators in K-12 and Higher Education. Find out who the higher education associates are and what they do to support this industry.

When I started working in Esri Canada's education department, it was called the K-12 group. It was made up of two associates and a manager who supported only K-12 education, along with libraries and museums. Eight years later, the department has evolved into the Education and Research group, with seven associates, a K-12 manager and a director. Half of the group support K-12 education, library and museum staff, while the other half supports higher education and research institutions.

Members of the higher education and research group hold specialized roles supporting this industry. Find out what their roles and responsibilities are and get to know them through their individual story maps that highlight one of their interests.

Dr. Brent Hall, Director of Education and Research

Brent began working at Esri Canada in January, 2012. He provides strategic direction and oversight for the activities of the education and research group staff. In addition to reviewing all K-12 and higher education teaching resource planning and production, he works most closely with the needs of the higher education community. This includes supporting and collaborating on joint externally funded research projects with numerous university partners. He is also involved with integrating spatial learning through the use of mapping and map data in K-12 curricula across the country.

Brent's story map: Kiwi in Patagonia

Iain Greensmith, Higher Education Analyst

In 2007, Iain was hired as a GIS Analyst. Seven years later, his focus is in the area of higher education. His primary responsibilities include supporting professor and student adoption and implementation of the ArcGIS Platform in their coursework and research. He also creates teaching resources, runs webinars on ArcGIS products and supports product and licensing questions.

Separate from his work life, Iain enjoys spending time with his family. His favourite pastimes include sailing, triathlons, biking with his daughter, laughing with his son and doing Tough Mudders.

Iain's story map: Tough Mudders

Krista Amolins, Higher Education Developer and Analyst

Krista started at Esri Canada in February, 2013. She supports teaching and learning at the higher education level. This includes developing resources for use at colleges and universities (LiDAR, Python and ArcPy, ArcGIS API for JavaScript, ArcGIS SDK for Android), guest lecturing to undergraduate and graduate classes, managing the Esri Canada Scholarship Program, collaborating on research projects and responding to higher education inquiries.

Outside of work, most of Krista’s activities revolve around the Latvian community. They include volunteering with the ladies’ committee at St Andrews Ev. Lutheran Latvian church, helping out with brunches at the Latvian Canadian Cultural Centre, holding an executive position in the local branch of studenšu korporācija Gundega ārpus Latvijas and participating in the Massed Choir Concert during the XIV Latvian Song Festival in Canada, held in Hamilton this past summer.

Krista's story Map: LiDAR in Archaeology

Cameron Plouffe, Higher Education Developer and Analyst

Cameron began working at Esri Canada almost a year and a half ago. He is responsible for developing resources related to spatial analysis, spatial statistics and modelling, as well as developing Web mapping apps that utilize Esri software. Cameron's interests involve the integration of open programming languages (e.g., R, Python) into the ArcGIS platform, and using data visualization techniques to help reveal and communicate trends in spatial data.

After work hours, Cameron spends his time designing Web sites, listening to and playing all types of music, and following NBA Basketball.

Cameron's story map: The Evolution of the Modern Guitar

Krista Amolins, Iain Greensmith and Cameron Plouffe.

To learn more about Story Maps, check out some of our educational resources below:

Stayed tuned to our next blog post that will highlight the K-12 Education and Research members.

About the Author

Angela Alexander

Angela Alexander is a K-12 Education Resource Developer on the Esri Canada Education and Research team. She has over six years of experience working with educators across Canada. Angela is responsible for producing geographic information system (GIS) and curriculum specific resources, conducting and creating custom workshops for educators and judging and developing the question for the annual GIS Skills Ontario competition in Waterloo, Ontario. Angela has a Bachelor’s degree in Geography and Sociology from the University of Western Ontario and completed the Applied Digital Geography and GIS certificate program at Ryerson University.

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