The prominence of GIS and Remote Sensing has gained immense importance over the past few years, especially for environmental management. My primary motive to study Geographic Information Sciences (GISci) at Central Michigan University (CMU) engenders from the massive advances in GIS and Remote Sensing Technology in the U.S., which I would like to replicate in India. Although India is making significant strides in that direction, we are not quite there yet. I believe education from the CMU would be the next best step in my career as a scientist.
I have completed a B.Tech in Electrical and Electronics engineering. In the face of increasing population and anthropogenic activities that degrade natural resources and ecosystems, I experienced few of devastating environmental issues like urban sprawl and environmental pollution after which I developed a special interest towards environmental studies, I want to contribute to the environmental conservation and management which has persisted me to focus on geoinformatics. I have also completed an M.Tech in Environmental Geomatics from JNTU, Hyderabad. I realized that this field is truly where my interests lie, as a result, I performed very well in my masters, scoring 72.82 percentage and was awarded the degree in distinction.
My academic accomplishments can be exemplified by my contribution to science, specifically, conservation at a landscape-level. My master’s dissertation title ‘Conservation prioritization of forest ecosystems using geospatial technologies’ quantified deforestation, forest fires using multi-temporal remote sensing data for prioritization of threats and conservation hotspots. I primarily used the grid cell approach and carried out the research at the National Remote Sensing Centre (NRSC), Hyderabad. In addition, a portion of my dissertation has been published in the journal Environmental Monitoring and Assessment, with the title ‘Geospatial monitoring and prioritization of forest fire incidences in Andhra Pradesh, India’. Along with this work, I have contributed to a few other projects at NRSC which have been published in reputed journals such as Ecological Engineering and Current Science. I have presented my work at a few international conferences too.
In the past two years, I have gained experience with several applications of geoinformatics for monitoring the environment and for change assessment. Initially, I worked as a project assistant for tsunami inundation studies at the Council of Scientific & Industrial Research - National Geophysical Research Institute (CSIR-NGRI), integrating numerical modelling and GIS for generation of tsunami vulnerability at coastal regions and produced inundation maps. Furthermore, I have worked as a project scientist for “Geospatial inventory of coffee plantations at National level” (GEOCUP) under Indian Space and Research Organization (ISRO) - Coffee Board collaborative project. In both positions, I learnt various nuances of GIS, image processing software tools such as ArcGIS, ERDAS IMAGINE, PCI Geomatica and QGIS. Though my work has produced valid results, I believe better skills (in terms of advanced GIS techniques, programming and modelling) could produce more significant results for predicting and forecasting. With that in mind, the MS (GISci) program has advanced courses in the context to improve my knowledge and carry out progressive research under the guidance of experienced faculty.
Certain interactive sessions with experienced scientists and academicians during my master’s education, and at NRSC have further motivated me to pursue research opportunities in geoinformatics. My research interest lies in using remote sensing, advance GIS technologies, statistics, and programming for studying physical and environmental geography. After graduating, I wish to pursue doctoral studies further identifying new challenges, My long-term career goal is to seek a research and teaching position.
I am looking forward to pursuing MS in GISci, to interact with the distinguished faculty and participate in the research activities, conferences facilitating my development as an individual and I am confident that would make a positive contribution to ongoing research work at the university I see a clear fit for my skills and interests at the Department of Geography & Environmental Studies, CMU.