Highly self-motivated Katie James, while on her February reading break in Victoria, walked over to Stantec to inquire about possible GIS employment opportunities. Katie’s cold call worked out leading to a full-time position.  When I asked Katie about her experience so far, this is what she told me:

“It is undeniable that diving in head first is the way to learn. Working at a big company like Stantec has been so rewarding in it’s availability for learning opportunities. Since beginning here in April, I have learned many tips and tricks in ArcMap. One of my favourite tools is data driven pages – very useful for mapping routes.

I have fortunately found my niche in the office preparing field data for surveying using mobile mapcachescreating .gpx files, and using MapWel software to create .img files on GPS units. Additionally, I have worked closely on analyzing public transit routes for ridership volume and bus stop usage. Needless to say, data is messy and it has become very clear the importance of database functionality.

My experience has been nothing short of exciting. Everyday I learn something new, and what else could you really ask for?”


Barry McLane spent the summer working with the SGRC, providing mapping support to various community organizations throughout the Columbia River Basin. He also started his own cartography business; and published several maps for Tourism Rossland, the Kootenay Columbia Trails Society, and private developers.

“When I decided to go ahead with the Rossland trail guide, I contacted Tourism Rossland to make sure that I wouldn’t be stepping on any toes, as they already publish a brochure of the Rossland trails.

That courtesy call ended up landing me work with themcreating road biking and nordic skiing maps. That interaction with them further solidified just how important networking is. I think the initiative that I took with the KCTS and Tourism Rossland was ultimately what landed me the position at the SGRC.”

Check out some of Barry’s recent work at kootenaymaps.ca/projects.

Barry will be joining the ADGIS class next Friday (Septemebr 19th) to showcase the bridge between ArcGIS and Adobe Illustrator.