Eastern Michigan University’s Yichun Xie will be helping to put new learning opportunities on the map for Michigan middle school and high school students.
Xie, director of the Institute for Geospatial Research and Education and a computer modeling expert, was awarded $1.5 million from the National Science Foundation to work with 120 teachers from around the state. He will be helping to incorporate geographic information systems and technology or GIS/T education into schools in areas that would otherwise be unable to provide this kind of program.
GIS/T can be used to create and edit maps and spatial information and may be used in a number of science, technology, engineering and mathematics occupations. The program is intended to build skills that would be useful in the growing STEM fields.
According to a statement from the university, 5,000 students in grades 8 through 12 will be participating in this program. There will be three levels, culminating in an “intern” level that will allow the student to work with local organizations to gain real-world experience.
Xie has contributed to projects for multiple notable organizations in addition to his work at EMU. His resume includes work for the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Department of Commerce.