Erik Schulz and Nutaila Yaqoob Ayoub AI Hadidi were recognized at the GIS Day Map Competition sponsored by University Libraries.
In honor of Geographic Information System (GIS) Day on November 15, the competition invited students to design a map using publicly available data or their own datasets with any software of their choice. The event was designed to be accessible and inclusive, welcoming participants of all skills levels and backgrounds to engage with data and map-making.
"The GIS Day Map Competition aims to foster a deeper appreciation for GIS, encourage spatial thinking, and showcase the power of maps in understanding our complex world," Wenjie Wang, Geospatial Data and Programs Librarian and event organizer, said. “Students will have the opportunity to showcase their creativity and analytical skills by creating innovative and informative maps that highlight various aspects of our world or even fictional realms.”
Schulz, a graduate student in geography, earned second place overall with his map, “Nebraska’s Missing U.S. Soldiers from the Vietnam War.” AI Hadidi, a senior geology major, was the People’s Choice winner with her map, “Exploring Earthquake Magnitudes and Fault Zones in China.”
Map submissions were evaluated by a panel of faculty and staff members according to creativity and originality; clarity of the theme; effective use of data; and technical proficiency. Participants were invited to map real-world phenomena like climate change trends or urban development or delve into the realms of fantasy by creating maps of fictional worlds found in epic fantasy novels, video games, or even their own imaginative creations. All digital maps were showcased on a map gallery webpage, and selected maps were printed and displayed in the Love Library from November 13-17.