Jim has spent most of his recent career ‘doing’ GIS in support of research projects, teaching GIS, and creating information graphics for presentation and publication.
He enjoys applying advanced GIS to problems. He can handle numerous data formats and database building. He has many years of ArcGIS use, including the teaching of professionals in the geospatial online programs. He can solve integration of data sets with varied datums and coordinate systems. He builds maps and databases that support field-work through combinations of varied data sets such as terrain, surface geology, road networks, and layers customized to the research. He can also advise on GIS project procedures.
He is adept at custom cartography and at building technical graphics for courses, presentations, journal articles and books.
He was a part of the faculty in Penn State’s online Certificate and Masters of GIS programs from January of 2003 through August of 2018. He taught three of our courses: Geography 868: Spatial Database Management for Geospatial Professionals, Geography 484: GIS Database Development, and Geography 483: Problem-solving with GIS.
He currently teaches Geography 463: Geospatial Information Management in the resident program.
From 2003 through 2014 he was also part of Doug Miller's Center for Environmental Informatics in the Earth and Environmental Systems Institute at Penn State providing GIS and cartography support to numerous projects.
He was part of the Deasy Geographics Lab (the cartography/information design lab in the Dept of Geography, now called the Gould Center), from 1991–1997.
He started learning GIS in the early 90s because we wanted to put shaded relief imagery behind some of the thematic maps we were producing in the Deasy Geographics.
Shortly thereafter he was teaching GIS in several contexts within the Department of Geography: a practicum course built around the Esri GIS software; the graduate student section of the introductory GIS course; and a course based in Penn State’s map library.
Prior to getting involved in the Geography Department, he was an inaugural member of the EMS Earth System Science Center (now EESI) working as a research assistant, processing paleoclimate data and producing publication and presentation graphics.
He spent from 1998 through 2002 teaching GIS and cartography in the Department of Geography at the University of Florida.
He has held full-time fixed-term positions in EMS at Penn State for 24 years, and is currently appointed in the Department of Geography.