Ambassador Spotlight ‘Tharuka Milani’

Introducing Tharuka Milani from Central Province in Sri Lanka

Where did you study? 

1. Faculty of Geomatics, Sabaragamuwa University of Sri Lanka

2. Faculty of Graduate studies, Sabaragamuwa University of Sri Lanka

3. The State Key Laboratory of Information Engineering in Surveying, Mapping and Remote Sensing, Wuhan University (LIESMARS), Wuhan University, China

What are the requirements to be a surveyor in your area? 

Complete the G.C.E. Advanced Level examination in the math stream and enroll in a degree program related to surveying offered by either Sabaragamuwa University of Sri Lanka or Kothalawala Defense University. Upon completing the degree, individuals can seek employment in private surveying companies or choose to join the Survey Department of Sri Lanka. Those who join the Survey Department may need to work for a specified period, typically three years, to gain practical experience. After the required work experience, individuals can apply to become a registered government surveyor. Then they are eligible to request a license for private practice through the Land Survey Council. This would allow them to work independently or establish their surveying consultancy. Individuals should follow the specific procedures and requirements set by the council for obtaining and maintaining their licenses.

 How did you get into surveying?

I had dreamt of becoming a civil engineer. To gain admission to a government University Engineering faculty, I needed the higher Z score from the GCE Advanced Level (A/L) examination. Unfortunately, despite my efforts, I missed the chance to attend the engineering faculty. Determined to find a professional degree program involving fieldwork, as I preferred not to work in an office setting, I explored my options. Considering my Z score, I discovered the B. Sc Surveying Science degree offered by the Faculty of Geomatics at Sabaragamuwa University of Sri Lanka. In 2013, this was the only faculty providing a surveying science degree. This program aligned perfectly with my interests. It’s worth noting that surveying is not a traditionally favored profession for girls in Sri Lanka; however, it was my passion to become a surveyor, and I embraced it wholeheartedly.

How long have you been in the industry?

6 years

Are you part of any associations or organizations you would like us to mention?

Associate member of SISL (The Surveyors’ Institute of Sri Lanka)

Assistant Lecturer at SUSL (Sabaragamuwa University of Sri Lanka) since 2017-2021


Why do you want to be a GKiS Brand Ambassador?

I am eager to become a GKiS Brand Ambassador because of my strong commitment to promoting surveying, particularly among young generations, with a special emphasis on encouraging girls to explore diverse surveying applications. My passion lies in inspiring and nurturing an interest in surveying among the youth, fostering their curiosity and paving the way for them to consider careers in this field.

One of my primary goals is to highlight the various surveying applications that are particularly favorable for girls, such as remote sensing, GIS, land management, and other innovative technologies. By showcasing the exciting opportunities within these domains, I aim to break stereotypes and encourage more young girls to envision themselves as successful professionals in surveying.

Why is it important for kids to know about surveying and the wider geospatial industry

introducing kids to surveying and the wider geospatial industry not only prepares them for potential future careers but also cultivates valuable skills, awareness, and a deeper appreciation for the role these fields play in shaping the world around us.

Early exposure to surveying and geospatial technologies helps children understand the breadth of career possibilities within these fields. It broadens their horizons beyond traditional career paths and introduces them to exciting, diverse opportunities.

Educating kids about various real-world applications, from mapping and urban planning to disaster response and environmental conservation provide them with a tangible understanding of how these technologies contribute to solving important global challenges.

Introducing kids to surveying can spark their interest in STEM subjects, fostering a passion for learning and critical thinking that can extend beyond the field of surveying.

Surveying involves critical thinking and problem-solving skills. Introducing kids to these aspects of the field encourages the development of analytical skills and the ability to approach challenges systematically. 

What are you going to do as an ambassador for GKiS?

As a GKiS (Get Kids into Survey) ambassador, my primary goal is to inspire and educate young minds about the exciting world of surveying and the broader geospatial industry.

  • Organize and participate in educational programs, workshops, and events aimed at introducing kids to the fundamentals of surveying and geospatial technologies.
  • Work closely with schools and educational institutions to integrate surveying-related content into their curriculum, making it more accessible and engaging for students.
  • Emphasize the inclusivity of the surveying profession, encouraging children from all backgrounds and genders to explore and consider careers in this field.
  • Develop and share hands-on activities and experiments that allow kids to experience the practical side of surveying, making learning interactive and enjoyable
  • Share personal stories and experiences to inspire kids, showing them that anyone can pursue a rewarding career in surveying with passion and dedication.
  • Actively engage with the community, including parents, educators, and industry professionals, to build a supportive network that encourages and nurtures the interest of kids in surveying.

Through these efforts, my aim is to contribute to GKiS’s mission of making surveying and geospatial sciences accessible, enjoyable, and inspiring for the next generation.

What are your hobbies?

Crafting, Dancing

If you/your company had a GKiS character, what would it be? 

Specially a lady surveyor character

It would be a teenage lady surveyor named Terra Explorer. Terra, passionate about mapping and exploring the world, would be depicted as an adventurous and tech-savvy individual who uses geospatial technologies to solve real-world problems.

What resource would you like to see next from GKiS?

I would like to see the development of engaging and interactive educational resources that make learning about surveying and geospatial sciences fun for children such as Digital Games and Apps, Printable or digital activity books with age-appropriate exercises and puzzles related to surveying.