GIS classes at Bigfork Schools help students develop career ready skills
GIS classroom volunteer and student working on a poster
Bigfork public schools offers an introductory GIS class to middle school students and a project-based, dual credit class to interested high school students. GIS (Geographic Information Systems) is a computerized system for storing and analyzing data that is spatially referenced to the Earth. GIS has a wide variety of practical applications and is used in many fields including wildlife biology, engineering, forestry, city planning, real estate, marketing, banking, insurance, and many more. There is a worldwide demand for individuals with GIS skills with over ten thousand current opening and an expected increase in demand during the next decade. GIS gives Bigfork students an advantage in their future.
Bigfork GIS student projects benefit local organizations and agencies
BHS student working with Forest Service ranger
Bigfork students are not taught GIS by traditional methods in which they develop skills the will later use on a project. They start with a project and then develop the skills they need. Furthermore, most student projects are conducted in partnership with a local agency or organization such as the US Forest Service or National Park Service. Often times the project tackles a task the agency doesn’t have budget or staff to undertake. These projects provide the partnering agency with data and analysis that will help them make decisions to better manage natural resources. Descriptions and webmaps for a few student projects are included in this website.
Bigfork High School GIS students can earn tuition free college credits with dual enrollment
For the second semester of their GIS class high school juniors and seniors can enroll at nearby Flathead Valley Community College and earn 2 college credits for completion of their GIS project. The college credits requires students to write a proposal, final report, and presentation in addition to creating GIS layers. The students can earn the credits free of charge through the "Running Start Program" For more information on this program click on the link below: