USGIF has hired Camelia Kantor, formerly an associate professor of geography at Claflin University in South Carolina, as its new director of academic programs. Kantor joins the Foundation with nine years of experience in college level teaching, course development and research, in addition to four years of K-12 teaching in the U.S. and abroad.
“While it took USGIF some time to fill our director of academic programs position, our patience was rewarded in the hiring of Dr. Camelia Kantor,” says USGIF CEO Keith J. Masback. “Camelia brings a deep academic background in geography combined with substantial passion for learning and discovery, including an absolute buy-in to the unique interdisciplinary approach required to convey GEOINT in an academic setting."
At Claflin University, Kantor designed, secured funding for and implemented an innovative geography curriculum. This, in addition to many of her other accomplishments, earned her the Association of American Geographers’ 2017 Dr. Helen Ruth Aspaas SAGE Innovator award. Her most recent projects involved undergraduate student training in the geosciences and geospatial intelligence, as well as faculty interdisciplinary training in Earth sciences, both funded by the National Science Foundation.
As USGIF’s director of academic programs, Kantor will manage USGIF’s Collegiate GEOINT Accreditation Program, which awards students GEOINT Certificates accompanying their college degrees. The Foundation currently has 14 accredited programs and more than 780 students have earned a USGIF GEOINT Certificate, to date.
“I hope to continue to grow USGIF’s already well-established accreditation program and to ensure future GEOINT professionals are well equipped to not only perform on the job, but also to be well rounded and capable of leading their communities through their high ethics, technical and communication skills, and wisdom,” Kantor says.
Representatives from USGIF’s accredited GEOINT programs will gather at USGIF headquarters in October for the Foundation’s annual GEOAcademic Week. The three-day event is an opportunity for the school representatives to share their experience with the program and to collaborate on the foundation’s professional development initiatives.
USGIF is a nonprofit educational foundation dedicated to promoting the geospatial intelligence tradecraft and developing a stronger GEOINT Community with government, industry, academia, professional organizations, and individuals who develop and apply geospatial intelligence to address national security challenges.