Introducing Brand Ambassador Brent Fico from Allentown, Pennsylvania:
Where did you study? I did not formally study to become a surveyor but instead, learned on site through experience.
What are the requirements to be a surveyor in your area? To become a licensed surveyor in Pennsylvania, one must either study surveying in college and sit for a state and national test or have years of experience combined with the state then national test.
How did you get into surveying? My mother was a draftsperson at a surveying firm, and they were looking to hire a handful of inexperienced help to further the profession. Almost like a paid internship!
If you are not a surveyor, what do you do? As I no longer survey, I am now employed as Customer Integration Engineer at a survey equipment dealer. Essentially, I help surveying customers decide what equipment may be best for their companies, help train their employees, and support their teams on the back end with any issues or questions they may have.
How long have you been in the industry? I spent 13 years surveying in the field as well as 4 years in my current role.
Why do you want to be a GKiS Brand Ambassador? I would like to be a GKiS Ambassador because surveying seems to get overlooked as an integral part of everyday life. Without surveyors the roads, the buildings, the land, would all fail to exist or would fall into disrepair. GKiS shows the importance of surveying in all of its capacities, which is so important to keep the trade thriving!
Why is it important for kids to know about surveying and the wider geospatial industry? As I stated before, without surveying in all of its forms, the world around us would fall into disrepair or cease to exist. It is important to show that surveying is not just angles and distances but scanning, planning and layout etc.
What are you going to do as an ambassador for GKiS? As a GKiS ambassador, I will be using my time to inform the younger generations that surveying is, was, and will continue to be a vital part of helping society work through career days, surveyors conferences and any other necessary avenue to spread the message!
What are your hobbies? Some of my hobbies include baseball, snowboarding, atv riding, and furthering my knowledge base. It is never too late to continue to learn new things!
If you/your company had a GKiS character, what would it be? If I or my company had a character, I believe it would be an adventurer or a mountain goat. Someone that is always willing to show up and help any and everywhere they are needed. Much like a surveyor showing up to each site ready to perform their necessary tasks.
What resource would you like to see next from GKiS? I believe the worksheets, posters and comic are great already. If I were to suggest anything further, perhaps a calendar next. Smaller posters, combined with surveying facts and the calendar below it.
Anything else you want to add that you think our audience (surveyors, teachers, parents) would be interested in? The only thing I can think to add is how important surveying is to everyday life. With how it tends to be overlooked as a profession for younger generations, it is going to become increasingly difficult to find the right people to teach those that are starting out and thus more difficult to necessary work done.