Divine Mercy Catholic Academy – Our Last Maps, Apps and Drones Tour Stop!

Written by Undergraduate Sara Peluso (Environmental Major)

Our final Maps, Apps and Drones Tour stop for the 2017-2018 school years was a special day for us! On May 10th our team traveled to Divine Mercy Catholic Academy in Merritt Island to unveil our augmented reality sandbox! The school hosted a Geospatial and Conservation Day, where our drone and sandbox were featured activities. The students cycled through the activities on the Geospatial and Conservation day agenda by grade level, so we had about 20 kids for each half hour cycle.

Close up view of one of the models the students had created for the event.

The drone activity was set in the auditorium, where two fabulous models were set up. The attention to detail on these models was absolutely fantastic, the students included a Dunkin Donuts, Target, a Chik- fil- a (with a menu!), skyscrapers, and even a laboratory in a tree house. The amount of work put into these models was truly appreciated. After Lain led our Maps, Apps and Drones presentation, the students broke off into equal sized groups to fly over the two models. Many of these students had flown drones before, and a few even owned their own. The students were asked about how the models would be affected after a disaster (such as a hurricane) was to strike, and students responded remarkably well with answers regarding how the buildings and the people in the communities would be affected.

Lain presenting the importance of drone work in disaster response to the students.

In the social room, adjacent to the auditorium, Nick had set up our augmented reality sandbox for its first ever demonstration! As students entered the room they gathered around the sandbox as Nick and Sara built mountains and created bodies of water, then simulated a landslide to show how the box could be utilized for disaster management and urban planning.

Students experimenting with the sandbox.

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Engineering Night at Milwee Middle School- A Maps, Apps and Drones Tour Stop

Written by Undergraduates Patricia Bencivenga (Sociology Major), Sara Peluso (Environmental Major), and Amber Rutstein (Environmental Major) On April 26th, the Citizen Science GIS team took the Maps, Apps and Drones Tour to Milwee Middle School for Engineering Night. This tour stop was special because we had the pleasure of working with 200 students and their Read more about Engineering Night at Milwee Middle School- A Maps, Apps and Drones Tour Stop[…]

Renaissance Charter at Goldenrod Journey with Drones and GIS: A Maps, Apps, and Drones Tour Stop

Written by Undergraduate Carolynn Turneur (Biology major) and PhD Student Lain Graham (Sociology major) The Citizen Science GIS Team took the maps, apps, and drones tour to Renaissance Charter at Goldenrod on May 4th.  We spent the beginning of our summer break from UCF with two amazing classes, one class consisting of students in the Read more about Renaissance Charter at Goldenrod Journey with Drones and GIS: A Maps, Apps, and Drones Tour Stop[…]

2017 NSF REU Students present at the 2018 American Association of Geographers Conference in New Orleans

Written by 2017 NSF REU field site in Belize scholars, Brenner Burkholder, Chinonso Uzowihe, Kate Brandt and Julia Jeanty. Mid-April, the 2017 Citizen Science GIS student team traveled to New Orleans for the 2018 American Association of Geographers Annual Meeting. The conference was vast, spanning 3 different hotels, with 100s of sessions to attend and over 10,000 Read more about 2017 NSF REU Students present at the 2018 American Association of Geographers Conference in New Orleans[…]

Laureate Park Elementary’s Journey with Drones and GIS: A Maps, Apps, and Drones Tour Stop

Written by Undergraduate, Sara Peluso (Environmental Studies major), Carolynn Turneur (Biology Major) The Citizen Science GIS Team took the maps, apps, and drones tour to Laureate Park Elementary School on April 19th. We had the absolute pleasure of spending time with 40 students in the after-school program at Laureate Park Elementary in Lake Nona. Students had a chance Read more about Laureate Park Elementary’s Journey with Drones and GIS: A Maps, Apps, and Drones Tour Stop[…]

Students Overcome Obstacles at UCF STEM Day

Written by Dr. Hannah Torres, a Postdoctoral Researcher in the Sociology Department at UCF. What do pool noodles, hula hoops and duct tape all share in common? Answer: These were the key ingredients to create the Citizen Science GIS mini-drone obstacle course used during STEM Day at the University of Central Florida. STEM Day at Read more about Students Overcome Obstacles at UCF STEM Day[…]

Sunshine State Homeschoolers Maps, Apps and Drones Tour Stop

Written by UCF Sociology Undergraduate, Patricia Bencivenga The Maps, Apps and Drones Tour had a fantastic time meeting with the Sunshine State Homeschoolers on March 30th, 2018 at the Cooper Memorial Library in Clermont. There were over twenty students of different ages participating, which made our trip even more fun. It was heartwarming to see older Read more about Sunshine State Homeschoolers Maps, Apps and Drones Tour Stop[…]

Maps, Apps and Drones Tour Stop: Mount Dora Christian Academy

Written by UCF Sociology and GIS Ph.D. Student, Lain Graham and Undergraduate Environmental Sciences Major, Sara Peluso. Mount Dora Christian Academy’s 4th and 5th grader’s built a model coastal community, repurposing common materials like cardboard boxes, popsicle sticks, and straws. Ms. Laurel Steele’s 5th-grade class thoughtfully constructed the town for our coastal mapping drone activity, students collected Read more about Maps, Apps and Drones Tour Stop: Mount Dora Christian Academy[…]

Shingle Creek Elementary’s Journey with Drones and GIS: A Maps, Apps, and Drones Tour Stop

Written by Undergraduates Sara Peluso (Environmental Major), Carolynn Turneur (Biology Major),  Pahola Zamora (Anthropology Major) The Citizen Science GIS Team took the maps, apps, and drones tour to Shingle Creek Elementary on April 5th. Our time was spent with 12 awesome students in the school’s National Honor’s Society! These students were the best of the Read more about Shingle Creek Elementary’s Journey with Drones and GIS: A Maps, Apps, and Drones Tour Stop[…]

2016 NSF REU Scholar, Ashley Letcher presented at the 6th International Marine Debris Conference in San Diego, CA

Ashley Letcher 2016 NSF REU student and M.S. student at Georiga State University writes, I presented research from the first year Belize REU at the 6th International Marine Debris Conference hosted by NOAA and UN Environment in San Diego, California. Over 54 countries were represented with over 700 participants to discuss the latest research and Read more about 2016 NSF REU Scholar, Ashley Letcher presented at the 6th International Marine Debris Conference in San Diego, CA[…]