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I graduated with a Bachelor of Liberal Arts degree a few years ago. What advice would you give someone like me, who didn't specifically study Geography, on how they can get into the GIS field?
Hi Heather. That is a great question. There are 2 main databases of GIS programs ... one is the Guide to Geography Programs in the Americas from www.aag.org - and the other is the list and map maintained by geotechcenter.org. I would say that you are already doing 1 key thing - being active in taking courses, like this MOOC. The other thing you can do is (1) go through some of the lessons on http://learn.arcgis.com and (2) explore some of the GIS tutorial books on www.esri.com/books. Then, I would say, be active on LinkedIn with the GIS groups, attend a F2F conference or two each year if you can such as a state event or the Esri UC, subscribe to scgis.org or a state GIS listserv, which are often filled with GIS positions, and also ... think about perhaps taking a certificate program in GIS offered by a community college or a university. I'll cut it off there but happy to fill in more details. --Joseph Kerski
Thanks for the great question. I didn't start out my career in GIS either, but once I understood the power I went back to to study GIS. There are many great online courses like this MOOC that can help you sharpen your skills. I would suggest you think about how you might like to apply GIS, look for a company that needs these skills and go market yourself! There is incredibly high demand for graduates who understand how to think spatially.
keep thinking spatial!
Hi, sorry for the delay; we don't have any master's degrees at this time. You'd need a college or university for that. Try:
U of Colorado
U of Wisconsin
Or look online for other ideas and lists, such as this one:
Hi Heather - I would say, GIS is often a field that is used to complement another career or industry. In other words, many people who use GIS wouldn't say it's their job, or even their field. It's great for applying to almost any other industry, from insurance to IT to oil & gas. So, you could take free or paid GIS courses, in person or online, at a college or other providers, and integrate it into your own career of choice. It, IMO, is more about getting the GIS Technician-level skills, and maybe a certification, than about needing to pursue another degree or something.
If I'm just opening a new small business (a small gym), what's the simplest way to take advantage of a tool like Business Analyst? How can I get the quickest return on investment?
Business Analyst will allow you to better understand the market you want to open up in as well as the customer base. I would explore the data using the techniques learned in week 4 - know who your target customers are and how best to reach them.