Topcon Positioning entered an agreement with COYOLIVERMORE, Calif.Topcon Positioning Systems (TPS) entered into a strategic partnership with Class of Your Own organization (COYO), a major educational initiative for high school students based in the United Kingdom.

The agreement will broaden the program into a global initiative through Topcon’s Education Partnership Program (EPP), which works directly with more than 1,000 schools and colleges around the world to advance surveying, civil engineering, construction and precision agriculture career opportunities.

Topcon and COYO have been working together since last summer to provide “best in class” teaching experiences in the areas of surveying and precise positioning for secondary students, aged 11 to 19. COYO provides design, survey, engineering and construction project-based curriculum materials.

The initial agreement was a result of Topcon Europe working directly with COYO founders Alison Watson, a land surveyor and former Topcon employee, and architect Dan Gibson. Watson says, the agreement with TPS will “dramatically expand COYO’s model of showing through distribution of materials and practical experience how science, technology, engineering principles and math are an integral part of the world of work, the world of business.”

Mark Contino, TPS vice president of global marketing and director of the EPP program, says, “This agreement makes Topcon COYO’s exclusive supplier of precision positioning systems. This is a continuation and expansion of a great working relationship where we have already loaned them equipment and provided technical support and materials.

“The agreement also strengthens our newly announced collaboration with Autodesk, which is already a COYO sponsor. This initiative is fast-growing and there is an incredible upside for the students and for future sales of Topcon equipment,” he says.

Contino predicts “this agreement is far-reaching and in the future, we anticipate working with COYO to expand the curriculum offerings to include scanning and mobile mapping.”

Ian Stilgoe, Topcon Europe geomatics business unit manager, who led the strategic partnership discussions, says, “The unique COYO educational initiative is an inspiring project to bring the real world into the classroom to educate the professionals of tomorrow. This program is designed by people who have worked in the construction sector and understand what our industry needs for future employees.”

In the past several years, COYO has introduced teachers and students to the concepts of how construction projects are conceived and designed, along with the stages of implementation. At the same time, students were introduced to the many diverse career paths associated with precise positioning, as well as Building Information Modeling (BIM) technology, which transforms design ideas and information into real-time models.