Welcoming our latest Brand Ambassador Ruben Del Rio from San Juan, Puerto Rico:
Where did you study?: I’m currently working on my bachelor’s degree at the Polytechnic University of Puerto Rico
What are the requirements to be a surveyor in your area?: In order to become a Licensed or Professional Surveyor (PS) in Puerto Rico you need a Bachelor’s degree and you need to take the Fundamentals of Surveying (FS) and Professional Surveying (PS) exams offered by NCEES. You also need to certify 2 years work experience under a Professional Surveyor (PS) before you become a PS.
How did you get into surveying? I actually discovered Surveying when I met my wife, Ruth Trujillo, who is a PS in Puerto Rico and USVI. I started asking her questions about her work and when she’d answer I’d just ask more questions. She invited me to come with her to the field and after that first experience I was hooked! I started begging her to let me go to the field with her and after a while she let me sit and watch her draft on CAD, which I also loved! She then started letting me draft and that was it. Watching those points that I shot on the field become lines, and those lines become a plat was amazing to me. I also fell in love with all the research that a Boundary Survey involves, that made me feel like a detective. For me, it was basically love at first survey.
How long have you been in the industry? I have been working at my wife’s firm since mid 2019, so that’s four years now.
Are you part of any associations or organisations you would like us to mention? I am currently a board member of the Association of Land Surveyors of Puerto Rico, and I like to collaborate whenever the Institute of Land Surveyors of Puerto Rico needs any help.
Why do you want to be a GKiS Brand Ambassador? Well, surveying in Puerto Rico is basically in the same state as almost everywhere else; we absolutely NEED more surveyors ASAP. I believe that you need to impact children as soon as possible and show them what surveying is all about. That’s the best way to also get the parents involved! After all, when it comes to going out and doing the field work involved, we’re all kids at heart. For me, the whole world is my playground, and I want to share that with as many people as I can! I also think I could be a good teacher or mentor for those people that are discovering surveying.
Why is it important for kids to know about surveying and the wider geospatial industry? Because that’s where the future lies! Almost every kid has wanted to become an astronaut and go to space, but how did we even manage to get people to space? Everyone sees how buildings get torn down and put back up, but how is that really done? Well all that’s possible thanks to surveyors and the geospatial industry! Many times we joke about being “the second oldest profession”, but just because we’re “old” doesn’t mean we stay old! We are always at the forefront of new and amazing technology. And with things like virtual reality and augmented reality becoming so popular, the world is going to continue needing surveyors and geospatial professionals for many years to come. It’s a great time to be a surveyor!
What are you going to do as an ambassador for GKiS? I really want to visit as many schools and education centers as I can in Puerto Rico. I’m really passionate about bringing surveying and geospatial technology to everyone in the community and placing the profession where it belongs; in the Mount Rushmore of professions!
What are your hobbies? I enjoy gaming, also building, fixing and tinkering around with computers.
If you/your company had a GKiS character, what would it be? I think it’d be something like me with a machete just cutting line… lol Or maybe just me, my survey vest and a robotic Total Station.
What resource would you like to see next from GKiS? I’d really love to know more about how Elaine got the idea and started GKIS. I firmly believe we need more people like her (and you!) to help grow the surveying industry and profession. If we want to market surveying to get more surveyors we need marketing and business strategies, and those strategies shouldn’t always come from surveyors. They should come from people outside the profession because they’re the ones seeing us as everyone else sees us.
Anything else you want to add that you think our audience (surveyors, teachers, parents) would be interested in? Well I’d like to invite everyone who’s ever wanted to see Puerto Rico and those who haven’t to come see Puerto Rico! We’re having our International Surveying Congress on March 2024!