Northern Virginia Community College student Chris Wideman shows Senator Warner Geospatial Technology software.
By Jonathan Wilson
Sen. Mark Warner (D-Va.) has secured a federal grant for Northern Virginia Community College's Geospatial Technology program. It's one of the few fields with an expanding job market in the midst of the recession.
Geospatial Technology is what's behind the GPS systems now found in many cars. Warner says it could be one key to Virginia's economic future.
For those that don't follow this stuff, think Google Maps and how you can manipulate the data. Michael Krimmer, head of the NOVA's Geospatial Studies program, says the National Geospace Intelligence Agency also hires Geospatial specialists and will soon hire many more.
"About 50 percent of that agency could retire in the next five years, so they're going to have a huge demand there," says Krimmer.
Krimmer says the $200,000 grant will help NOVA expand its online program to allow more students to take classes from home.