MSGISci Grad Is Designing Solutions for Climate Change
When Climathon, a 24-hour global climate change challenge, came to Long Beach in October 2017, CSULB grad Anshu Pallav was more than ready to contribute. The annual event invites innovators in major cities worldwide to help humanity achieve zero fossil fuel emissions in the next 30 years. Having just earned his Master of Science in Geographic Information Science (MSGISci) degree, Pallav presented his idea for a local solution that stemmed directly from his experience in the program.
Using the key skills of geospatial analysis and cartography, Pallav developed an interactive, online map of Long Beach that helps users find bike share stations within a half-mile radius of anywhere in the city. He eventually pitched his idea to stakeholders from the City of Long Beach, and won a CSULB Innovation Award for the project at Climathon.
“The MSGISci program provided all the necessary interactions needed with the geographic information science (GIS) industry experts,” explained Pallav. “We were exposed to the latest technology in GIS, and it also covered professional development courses. I was proactive and found multiple opportunities to network myself and develop my skills.
”One of these opportunities provided the initial spark for Pallav’s innovative idea. As a student, he attended the Esri GeoApp Challenge 2016, which was organized by GIS software company Esri and the City of Long Beach. The city made transportation information available to the public, while Esri provided its ArcGIS Platform for building web applications. Pallav utilized both, and continually improved his project with valuable insights gained during additional networking events, including the TEDxCSULB conference and GIS Day event in 2016; the Seventh Annual Geospatial Summit at USC and Esri User Conference in 2017; and the SCAG Regional Conference General Assembly in 2018.
“I gave many presentations on my final project, and it really helped me gain confidence in my skills,” said Pallav.
Pallav also had a personal interest in local transportation. As a newly arrived international student from India in 2016, he simply needed convenient and affordable ways to get around town between evening classes, two on-campus jobs, and extracurricular activities.
“I opted to live the California life when I chose CSULB,” said Pallav. “I was now closer to Los Angeles and had the opportunity to explore. The campus location and life seemed very interesting, with many activities and events. Being close to the beach with amazing weather appealed to me too!”
MSGISci instructors provided Pallav with the technical expertise, personal interaction, and professional recommendations he needed to transition from campus to career.
A class visit to Esri headquarters, bolstered by his experience using the company’s software, made the transition complete. The company hired Pallav, and he is now employed as an Enterprise Analyst at Esri in Redlands, CA.
“Esri is the world leader in GIS software, and I am proud to be a part of such a large organization,” said Pallav. “My experience here in the MSGISci program has definitely helped me in defining my independent identity, and having a master’s degree in hand reminds me of my journey from India to USA. I am ready to keep pushing myself against all odds to get to my dream.”