Author Archives: idcenews

GIS Week November 18th-November 22nd

Join the GISDE department for their annual GIS Week this Monday, November 18th through November 22nd! Please see the schedule below:

Monday, November 18th

“Chasing Ice” documentary screening and discussion

Jefferson 320, 8:00-10:00pm

Chasing Ice is the story of one man’s mission to change the tide of history by gathering undeniable evidence of our changing planet.”

Tuesday, November 19th

Brown Bag Lunch with GIS faculty

Granville Room, IDCE House, 12:00-1:00


Jonas Clark 133, 9:00-10:00pm

There will be Acoustic Java gift cards for prizes!

Wednesday, November 20th

Guest Speaker Patrick Florance from Tufts University

Sackler Science Building Room 121, 2:00-4:00pm

Thursday, November 21st

Open Source GIS Workshop

Jonas Clark 103, 12:00-1:00pm

Camilla Mahon and Tyler Dahlberg will present “Free Online GIS and Cartography Tools”.

Friday, November 22nd

Wine and Cheese Event

Jefferson 218, 5:00-6:00pm

Florencia Sangermano of Clark Labs will present different Conservation GIS research topics, with examples from student’s research at Clark University.

Student Poster Session

Clark Labs, 6:00-8:00pm

The poster session will exhibit applications of GIS from Clark University students. Wine and Cheese reception to follow.

GISDE ’14 Students Anne Clark Baker and Ryan Taylor Williams Research for NASA

Anne Clark Baker (GISDE ‘14) received a B.A. in Architecture from Washington University in St. Louis and Master in Landscape Architecture from the Harvard Graduate School of Design. Her experience designing public landscape architecture projects in the U.S. and abroad, coupled with AmeriCorps volunteer work in refugee and immigrant communities led to her interest in the relationship between localized human experiences and the broad view of global change dynamics afforded by remote sensing techniques. She came to the GISDE program to gain a deeper understanding of the different methods and scales at which geospatial information is gathered and analyzed, in order to better inform the design, planning, and ongoing adaptability of human settlements and landscapes in the future. She recently received a Switzer Environmental Fellowship in support of her studies at Clark.

Ryan Taylor Williams (GISDE ‘14) grew up in rural North Texas and received a B.A. in Urban Studies from the University of Texas (UT) at Austin. His motivation to come to Clark stems from his volunteer experiences working with disadvantaged communities in both urban and rural contexts of Mexico, South Africa, and the United States, and a deep interest in conservation and systemic sustainability.  His current academic and personal interests are the use of GIS and remote sensing for spatial analysis of the urban environment, anthropocentric land change, and sustainable design and planning. He has worked as data coordinator and Teaching Fellow at Citizen Schools, committee co-chair at UT’s Campus Environmental Center, Teaching Assistant at Clark, and as a freelance planner at DesignTank. After his time at Clark, Ryan plans to use spatial data analysis and cartography to improve the capacity of organizations to adapt to a rapidly changing world.

This past year, Baker and Williams worked together at Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC) as research interns within NASA’s DEVELOP program. Under the supervision of scientists at GSFC and in collaboration with the African Conservation Centre, their team’s research focused on using satellite imagery and raster analysis techniques to explore the phenological response of vegetation to drought events and grazing pressure from livestock and wildlife within the Amboseli Basin of Kenya. Their results were presented at DEVELOP’s close-out event at NASA headquarters in Washington D.C. and was selected to be presented at the American Geophysical Union’s 2013 Fall Meeting in San Francisco.

Anne and Ryan plan to graduate this spring, with hopes to use their knowledge gained at Clark to better serve their community!

Dual Degree Student Sam Bryson-Brockmann on the Clark Community Thrift Store and Youth Programming

Sam PictureDual degree (CDP/MBA) 2nd year student Sam Bryson-Brockmann can be found managing a youth internship program at the Clark Community Thrift Store, attending IDCE Student Association meetings as the CDP representative, or brewing coffee at a local Starbucks. He is a Long Island native and graduate of Drew University, with a degree in History and Pan-African studies.

After graduating from Drew University in 2011, Bryson-Brockmann became an elementary school math teacher in Kansas City through Teach for America, a program that ensures children in underserved populations receive excellent education. It was during this year that Bryson-Brockmann’s passion developed for youth programming, specifically for children in these underserved communities.

Bryson-Brockmann chose Clark University’s IDCE department for its unique dual degree program, as well as its location. With a desire to start his own nonprofit in the future, he knew the importance of having a strong understanding for theory and best practices in the non-profit sector. A degree in Community Development and Planning, mixed with a Master’s Degree in Business Administration, was the perfect combination for Bryson-Brockmann. Viewing Worcester as a city with potential, the location was ideal for him to begin studying and working.

Bryson-Brockman had a passion for thrift stores even as a child, volunteering with his mother at a thrift shop in Freeport, NY. He started volunteering at the Clark Community Thrift Store upon arriving to Worcester, working as a business advisor during his first year at Clark. During the summer, Sam was hired as a manager for the Clark Community Thrift Store, overseeing volunteers and sorting through the vast amounts of donations. Sam currently organizes and runs a youth program in partnership with the Regional Environmental Council’s YouthGROW program, an urban agricultural-based employment program for low-income teens. The youth program at the Clark Community Thrift Store is the only site through YouthGROW that is not within the Regional Environmental Council.

Currently, YouthGROW students at the Clark Community Thrift Store are conducting a market analysis under the guidance of Bryson-Brockmann. They are researching other thrift stores in the area, and analyzing demographics to get a better understanding of the supply of and demand for gently used items in the area. This market analysis will be presented for the public in the coming months. Bryson-Brockman believes that with these skills, YouthGROW students will be better positioned for a job in the future. Out of the eight students participating, two have already found jobs.

Bryson-Brockmann’s goals involve further research on corporate social responsibility, labor and supply chains, and job growth in underserved communities. Through his time with Teach for America and the Clark Community Thrift Store, Bryson-Brockman sees great importance in preparing young people to serve their community through their future careers. If they can begin in the growing retail and service industries, as in the YouthGROW program, he believes they will be better prepared for college and their future careers.

For more information on the Clark Community Thrift Store, please enjoy this video segment from Worcester TV’s ‘Hank Stoltz Experience’, featuring Gus Meissner ’14, and Sam Bryson-Brockman, ’14:


Q&A with Sue Czepiel, Director of Career Development and External Relations

Sue Czepiel is the newest member of the International Development, Community and Environment department at Clark. Sue joins IDCE as the Director of Career Development and External Relations.  With twenty years of experience in Career Development, and a passion for guiding students to their career goals, IDCE is happy to have Sue!

Czepiel Photo (2)Q: Tell us a bit about what you have done in the past, and what brought you to Clark.

 Sue: I came to Clark IDCE for the opportunity to assist graduate students in finding internships and employment in the fields in which IDCE specializes.  I have worked in Career Development for 20 years and have helped students and graduates in searching for their perfect career.  I am looking forward to helping students to apply for and secure more internships and jobs in their fields of study.  I can help students and graduates with resume writing, cover letter writing, applications for jobs and internships, interview preparation, salary negotiations and career planning.  Please make an appointment so I can meet you!

Q: How did you become interested in career development?

 S: I have been lucky to have worked in Career Development for the past 20 years. I became interested in Career Development after a career as an investigative radio news reporter.  It is a privilege to assist people in achieving their career goals and dreams.

Q: What future ventures do you want to take on next?

S: I would like to bring more employers and alumnae to campus, either in-person or via Skype or other interactive means.  I would also like to position IDCE at Clark as the “University of Choice” for nonprofit, private, government, NGO and research organizations who seek employees and interns.

Q: Any fun facts about your hometown?

S: The town square in my town was donated to the town by John Hancock, one of the signers of the Declaration of Independence!

To make an appointment with Sue, please email her at

Professor Halina Brown speaks at the World Resources Forum

BROWNES&P Professor Halina Brown spread her knowledge of resource efficiency during the World Resources Forum (WRF) in Davos, Switzerland last week. The WRF is a “multinational platform for debate and innovation on resource productivity”.

The press release, which quotes Professor Brown, can be accessed below:

Clark GISDE student selected as Switzer Environmental Fellows by the Robert and Patricia Switzer Foundation

August 5, 2013 – BELFAST, Maine, August 5, 2013 – Anne Clark Baker (MS candidate, GSIDE, Class of 2014) and Lisa Stoddard (PhD candidate, Geography) have achieved the high honor of being selected as Switzer Environmental Fellows by the Robert and Patricia Switzer Foundation.

This year, the Switzer Foundation awarded 22 Fellowships for emerging environmental leaders who are pursuing graduate degrees and are dedicated to positive environmental change in their careers. Brief descriptions of Anne’s and Lisa’s work are as follows:

anne_clark_bakerAnne Clark Baker envisions her future work as that of creating opportunities through which scientists and designers can collaborate in a project-based way to investigate processes of environmental change, and to design and communicate future human-environment relationships. She sees institutions and agencies engaged in geospatial analysis as a viable platform for this work. She developed a commitment to public service early in her career as an AmeriCorps volunteer and has worked alongside both designers and scientists throughout her academic and professional life. Through her current studies at Clark University, participation in the NASA DEVELOP program, and recent work with scientists and fishermen invested in understanding and responding to the changing dynamics of fisheries in coastal Maine, her current research focuses on how the visualization of complex human-environment relationships can expand the impact of participatory and adaptive planning projects. She understands geographic information science as a common language embedded in the creative and exploratory work of both scientists and designers, and as such, an opportunity for enabling new modes of discovery and creation.

ES&P Student Steve Menges Interning for the MA Department of Energy Resources

Menges PictureSteve Menges is a 2nd year, ES&P student at Clark. A native of Syracuse, New York, Steve completed his undergraduate degree at SUNY Oneonta, majoring in Adolescent Education and Earth Science.  Prior to attending Clark, Steve taught elementary science in the Syracuse Public Schools for three summers as a part of the Say Yes to Education Program. A nonprofit foundation, Say Yes to Education has a mission to “dramatically increase high school and college graduation rates for urban students.”  Having a strong interest in science and education, Steve came to Clark because of its reputation as an educational leader, its interdisciplinary learning, and desire to engage students in learning outside of the classroom.

In the fall of 2012, Steve worked with Worcester Energy as their Energy Analysis Intern. During his school year at Worcester Energy, Steve created the City of Worcester’s Energy Portfolio for all city buildings, developed databases for the city’s Residential Rebate Pilot, and edited the city’s Climate Action Plan.

He is currently interning for the Massachusetts Department of Energy Resources (DOER) working specifically in the Leading by Example program.  He is responsible for working on Massachusetts’ Enterprise Energy Management Systems (EEMS) and the new renewable thermal program with the Department of Conservation & Recreation.  Both of these programs were implemented with the goal of reducing energy consumption among state agencies and buildings throughout the Commonwealth.  The EEMS program was recently recognized as the best state project in the Northeast Region by the Association of Energy Engineers and has already seen dramatic results in reducing energy consumption.

Steve’s passion for the importance of education is reflected in his current role at Clark, where he works as an Academic Probation Advisor. His responsibilities include creating and assisting in the execution plans of students on Academic Probation to ensure academic success.

Steve hopes to work in the energy efficiency or energy markets field after graduation, either for a state agency or a private utility, with the goal of bringing these real world experiences back to a classroom to teach the next generation of students.