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Celebrating Student Achievements 2022–2023

This past academic year brought a lot to celebrate at the Center for Geospatial Analytics! Below is a sampling of the outstanding work accomplished by the Center’s graduate students since last July. Congratulations to all!

Doctoral Students

  • Published 20 peer-reviewed articles, including first-author papers in Water Resources Research, Landslides, Global Biogeochemical Cycles, BMC Public Health, Regional Studies in Marine Science and Atmospheric Measurement Techniques.
  • Participated in NC State University’s Graduate Research Symposium, the College of Natural Resources’ Graduate Research Symposium, the American Geophysical Union Fall Meeting, FOSS4G Annual International Gathering, NC Department of Transportation Research & Innovation Summit, Society of Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry Annual Meeting, Southeast Climate Adaptation Science Center Regional Symposium, IALE-North America Annual Meeting, NC GIS Conference and ACM SIGSPATIAL.


  • Jenna Abrahamson received a National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship.
  • Emma Butzler received a University Graduate Fellowship.
  • Rebecca Composto received a University Graduate Fellowship.
  • Raja Das received a Graduate Student Research Grant from the Geological Society of America; the 2023 J. Hoover Mackin Award for best Ph.D. research proposal to the Quaternary Geology and Geomorphology Division of the Geological Society of America; a North Carolina ArcGIS User Group (NC AUG) Graduate Student Scholarship; and Roy J. Shlemon Scholarship Grant from the Environmental and Engineering Geology Division of the Geological Society of America.
  • Christopher Dunstan received a travel award to attend the 2023 Spatial Social Network Workshop.
  • Mollie Gaines was named a NASA SCoPE AGU Affiliate. She was also on the team that won the Center’s Collaboration & Innovation Award.
  • Izzi Hinks won the Center’s Gladys West Award.
  • Jamie Huerta was accepted into the 2022–23 Rachel Carson Campus Fellows program.
  • Margaret Lawrimore received an Honorable Mention in the Graphics & Data Visualization category of the NC State 2022 Envisioning Research Contest.
  • Martine Mathieu received a Student Meeting Attendance Grant from SETAC and an internship with the Department of Biostatistics and Bioinformatics at Emory University.
  • Shannon McAvoy was named an AGU Thriving Earth Exchange Community Science Fellow. She also won the Center’s Advocate Award.
  • Katie McQuillan won the Center’s Beacon Award.
  • Uchenna Osia received a Travel Grant from ACM SIGSPATIAL and was accepted into the Yale Environmental Fellows program.
  • Christina Perella was named a Global Change Graduate Fellow through the Southeast Climate Adaptation Science Center and received an IALE-NA Travel Award. She also received a University Graduate Fellowship.
  • Vini Perin was on the team that won the Center’s Collaboration & Innovation Award.
  • Ariel Saffer received an honorable mention for a National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship.
  • Felipe Sanchez received a conference travel award from the Comparative Medicine Institute.
  • Varun Tiwari was on the team that won the Center’s Collaboration & Innovation Award.
  • Corey White was accepted to summer 2023 cohort of the RIoT Accelerator Program for startups.
  • Alex Yoshizumi won the poster competition in the “Management & Policies” category (for Ph.D. students) at the CNR Graduate Research Symposium with his poster “A Tool for Assessing Electric Vehicle Infrastructure Across Emergency Evacuation Scenarios.” He was also named NC State’s 2023 Esri Innovation Program (EIP) Student of the Year.

Popular Press

Professional Master’s in Geospatial Information Science & Technology (MGIST) Students

  • Over the academic year, 39 students collaborated with 29 community/industry partners to develop geospatial solutions as part of their service-learning capstone experience.
  • In the Fall 2022 and Spring 2023 semesters, graduating MGIST students competed in a poster competition to showcase their service-learning projects: Hannah Swartz won in Fall 2022, and Dallas Hoffman won in Spring 2023.
  • Jeremy Davis was NC State’s graduate student winner of the G. Herbert Stout Award for Innovative Student Papers, representing the university at the NC GIS Conference in March 2023.

Graduate Certificate in GIS Students

Geospatial Graduate Student Organization (GGSO)

The GGSO is a university-recognized community that supports all graduate students affiliated with the Center, both on-campus and online. Led by students for students, the GGSO advances networking in the geospatial community, provides a platform for research and offers social events. This year, the GGSO:

  • Planned and coordinated a week-long series of professional development events for GIS Week 2022, including a kickoff networking event, four workshops, and three research roundtable lunches featuring 12 Faculty Fellows.
  • Organized nine Lunch & Learn workshops as part of their “Getting Data, Big and Small” series, all but one of which were led or co-led by Geospatial Analytics Ph.D. students.
  • Hosted a variety of social events intended to bring together members of the Center community: a Welcome Picnic at Raleigh Brewing Company in August 2022, regular post-Geospatial Forum socials, and group outings to 21+ Nights at Marbles Children’s Museum, the NC Museum of Natural Sciences, NC State Fair, and sports events. The GGSO also sold custom t-shirts and tote bags as part of an organization fundraiser.