If you’ve ever wondered what goes into making maps, the University of New Mexico’s Department of Geography and Environmental Studies wants to show you at this year’s GIS Day.

GIS Day is being held in conjunction with the nationwide Geography Awareness Week, and will take place Nov. 18, from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. in the Student Union Building Atrium.

“This is a fun day for all of us UNM geographers and our partners, because we get to show the university community so many interesting technologies and research projects that are usually hidden over in Bandelier Hall,” said Maria Lane, associate professor and department chair.  

GIS, or Geographic Information Systems, is a system designed to capture, store, and display data associated to positions on the Earth’s surface. It’s how a variety of modern maps are currently being made.

The Department of Geography and Environmental Studies is co-hosting the 2015 GIS Day with the Student Association of Geography and Environmental Studies and the Earth Data Analysis Center (EDAC) at UNM. Experts, as well as experts-in-training, will be on hand to talk to students and university community members about GIS, remote sensing, and other programs offered through the Geography and Environmental Studies Dept.

“The discipline of Geography is growing by leaps and bounds, especially in terms of jobs in the geospatial technology sector. This event provides a great chance talk with students and staff about how geographical training at UNM can prepare you for a variety of career options,” said Lane.

Lane said there will also be geography puzzles, posters, and a variety of prizes handed out.

EDAC is a repository for geographic information at UNM. The center provides students and faculty with the resources and expertise to incorporate GIS and related geospatial technology into course offerings and research across academic disciplines. The Center is also a resource for state, local, and tribal governments, private enterprise and social non-profit organizations, and historic societies with its extensive clearinghouse of free downloadable statewide geospatial data and historical imagery.

Students who are interested in GIS as part of a career, or who are considering taking a GIS class, are encouraged to stop by GIS Day to learn more about the programs UNM offers.