The Oracabessa Marine Trust (OMT) is a non-profit partnership between the GoldenEye Foundation and the Oracabessa Fishers…
This volunteer assignment aimed to provide Geographic Information System (GIS) training to secondary school students in Nigeria to equip students with valuable skills in using GIS technology for analyzing, visualizing, and interpreting spatial data. This helped bridge the gap between theoretical knowledge and practical application, empower students with hands-on experience in GIS tools and techniques, and nurture future professionals in the GIS field.
The training was conducted over two consecutive days in November 2022. Fifteen students studying Geography in SS3 at Oasis International College participated in the training. The first day was focused on basic introduction to GIS to build a foundation of knowledge for students. This included GIS concepts, applications, and it significance in various fields. Basic GIS terminologies, such as spatial data, layers, and coordinates, were explained. Students actively participated in discussions and asked insightful questions, displaying their interest in the subject.
The second day was focused towards practical implementation using GIS software commonly used in the industry. Students were guided through hand-on exercises to create basic maps, analyze spatial data, and interpret the results. Despite their first exposure to GIS technology, students showed enthusiasm and adaptability in grasping the software’s functionalities.
Based on my review of secondary schools in Abuja, Nigeria, it is clear that 98% of secondary schools in my locality have never heard of GIS, let alone how to apply it to their studies. This, therefore, calls for measures to support GIS education in secondary schools in Nigeria.
The initial plan was to provide GIS training to at least fifty secondary schools. However, due to financial constraints, outreach effort and resources were limited. I hope to revisit the mission and overcome some of the challenges in the future to contribute to GIS education. I am grateful for the experiences and lessons learned during this period, and I remain committed to making a positive impact whenever circumstances permit.