TennesseeView (TNView) is an associate member of AmericaView, a nationwide consortium of remote sensing scientists and educators. TNView was established in February 2022 based at the Department of Geography at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. The mission of TNView is to advance Earth observation research, education, outreach, and workforce development in the state of Tennessee. The goals of the TNView remote sensing consortium are to:
- Create a cohesive remote sensing community to facilitate collaboration on remote sensing research, education, and training
- Promote and facilitate sharing of remote sensing data and computing resources
- Develop training materials and workshops to promote the use of remote sensing, cloud computing, and open-source software
- Increase the awareness of geospatial technology in STEM education and workforce development
- Provide remote sensing training for K-12 teachers and students
A team of five UT geographers developed a project that uses cutting-edge geospatial technologies including Geographic Information Systems (GIS), spatial analysis tools, and web-based applications to combat the opioid crisis in a collaborative, proactive, and effective fashion. They are facilitating, enhancing, and integrating efforts among state and local governments, health and safety agencies, and community organizations in Tennessee to help our state put an end to this crisis.
- Gather and organize opioid-related data and information from disparate data sources into an integrated geodatabase.
- Develop tools with the capability to collect data in real time.
- Build GIS applications and map-based websites that communicate information to stakeholders.
- Provide real-time, data-driven tools to inform decision makers effectively so that swift decisions can be made.
- Develop tools with the capability to assist in deploying tactics and allocating resources.
- Make education and assitance widely available.
The Department of Geography has a long history of providing support to K-12 education across Tennessee. Much of the outreach is coordinated through the Tennessee Geographic Alliance (TGA) which is part of the National Geographic Network of Alliances for Geographic Education. However, most of our faculty are actively engaged in some way with K-12 education, aided by our graduate and undergraduate students.
The TGA hosts professional development workshops statewide for Tennessee’s teachers and, on occasion, receives grants from organizations like the National Endowment for the Humanities to host summer institutes that attract teachers from across the United States. The TGA also creates and distributes classroom resources and advocates for geography education at the state and national levels.
An example of K-12 outreach by the Tennessee Geographic Alliance is its on-going collaborations with the University’s McClung Museum of Natural History and Culture. The two organizations work closely to host teacher professional development workshops based on the permanent and special exhibits at McClung. In February 2013, the TGA, McClung and the Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences hosted a one-day workshop in conjunction with the exhibit Continents Collide: The Appalachians and Himalayas that included lectures, a tour of the exhibit and a fieldtrip to the Blue Ridge foothills. Twenty-five teachers from around East Tennessee participated.
“I’ve worked with [Adelante, a local immigration legal nonprofit] in the past to use GIS to visualize issues…The experience in community-based research was super valuable and will be helpful as I pursue my interest in working with nonprofits.”