Publication Date


Document Type

Conference Proceeding


Applying advanced technology for transportation research and management has been the focus of Bridgewater State’s GeoGraphics Laboratory since 1994. The laboratory has attracted a broad range of students from many academic disciplines and walks of life to engage in leading edge applications of innovative hardware and software to meet the needs of our transportation systems. The GeoGraphics Lab has provided a laboratory experience for nearly two decades. Geographic technology has changed dramatically over this time. The availability of global positioning systems (GPS) on cell phones is nearly ubiquitous. The increased power and reduced cost of desktop geographic information systems (GIS) has made GIS readily available for every professional of any academic discipline. The availability of timely and useful geographic databases and imagery from government and private agencies has never been better. The ability to create near real-time location information on our transportation system over the Internet has taken customer information to a new level.

This paper will share the authors’ experience educating students to take advantage of these twenty first century technologies to improve their value as professionals and improve the capacity of transportation systems. It will outline some of the transportation projects over the past seventeen years that have served as an educational experience for the Bridgewater State University students, describe the institutional approach that has evolved at the Laboratory within the context of higher education, note some of the benefits to faculty and students as a result of this approach, and address some of the inherent challenges posed by non-traditional approaches to educating the transportation workforce of the future.

Original Citation

Shama, U. & Harman, L.J. (2012, April 24-25, 2012). Training the Next Generation of Transportation Professionals in Geographic Data Collection, Spatial Analysis and Customer Information. Presented at National Transportation Workforce Summit (Washington, D.C.; April 2012).