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Emerging Workforce Scholars

New Orleans 

April 10-13th 2018

As part of the AAG (American Association of Geographers)'s  Advancing Diversity initiative, local students and young adults from New Orleans’ diverse communities will be an integral part of the Annual Meeting. Launched at the 2017 Annual Meeting in Boston, the AAG’s Emerging Workforce Scholars program enables aspirational community college and undergraduate students from underserved New Orleans-area communities to attend the Annual Meeting and interact with geography and geoscience professionals to learn about the work they perform and the preparation required for careers in their field.

This year, the AAG is proud to partner with Limitless Vistas, Inc., New Orleans Flood Protection Authority-East, Delgado Community College Workforce Development, University of New Orleans Pontchartrain Institute for Environmental Sciences, and others to make this another successful career exploration program.  Please extend a warm welcome to the Emerging Scholars as they explore careers in geography and the geosciences!

Program Map and Schedule:
Tuesday, April 10, 2018 (9AM-4PM)
Field Trip to four (4) of New Orleans’ critical environmental infrastructure operations. Meet with regional infrastructure experts and engineers and learn about careers in sustainable environmental infrastructure. At $25 (with lunch), it’s a great deal for undergrad/grad students and faculty alike.   More Info
Wednesday, April 11, 2018
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3:20 - 5:00 PM Studio 2, Marriott, 2nd Floor

Hear students, government, public and private sector leaders talk about programs in tech, government, and engineering to increase diversity in careers and programs in applied geography and geoscience



  • Darryl Cohen, Chair AAG Enhancing Diversity Committee Geographer U.S. Census Bureau

  • Arianna Ortiz-Dixon, environmental science student (EWS ’17), Univ. of Massachusetts ‘22-Boston

  • Bandana Kar, Research Scientist Oak Ridge National Lab

  • Astrid Ng, Education Outreach Specialist, ESRI

  • Iam Tucker, President, CEO, Integrated Logistical Support (ILSI) Engineering

5:20 - 7:00 PM  Room: Studio 2, Marriott, 2nd Floor

New Orleans is a great town in a challenging geographical location.  These regional leaders will talk about their own career pathways and the work they do to meet these challenges. Join them to recognize and welcome the workforce scholarship awardees from the local community who are learning about careers in geography and geoscience.



  • Ron Spooner, Chief Engineer, New Orleans Sewerage & Water Board; Commander, US. Naval Reserve

  • Ava Dejoie, Executive Director, Louisiana Workforce Commission.

Friday, April 13, 2018
1:20 - 3:00 PM  Room: Studio 1, Marriott, 2nd Floor

This interactive workshop speaks to the practical realities of entering and succeeding in careers in public, private and non-profit sector in the sustainable environment and infrastructure arenas. Learn about skills employers need and want in employee prospects. Learn how to target and connect effectively with employers, strategies for getting interviews, networking realities, improving your pitch and thriving when you get your dream job.

2) Careers In Applied Geography and Planning Panel 
3:20 ~5:00 PM  Room: Studio 1, Marriott, 2nd Floor

This session offers insight into careers using the tools of applied geography from international aid organizations, to educators, non-profits, and government



  • Derek Alderman, President, AAG, Professor, Dept. of Geography, University of Tennessee

  • Ruth Allen, Founder of View Finder International; Senior Advisor, Mercy Corps

  • Sherry Callahan, Exec. Director, Limitless Vistas, Inc (a 501(c)(3) non-profit

  • Jesse Noel, Exec. Director. Non-Flood Protection Asset Management Authority

  • Tamika Duplessis, PhD., Executive Dean, Delgado Community College

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