Lassonde Students Win Geomatics App Challenge

Originally posted on YFile News website

Three of York’s Lassonde School of Engineering Geomatics students – Stephen Kosmachuk, Justine Abdelshahid and Benjamin Brunson – have been selected as the winners of the 2017 Esri Canada Centre of Excellence (ECCE) App Challenge.

The App Challenge is an annual event for students studying at higher education institutes that are members of the ECCE program.

Lassonde students Stephen Kosmachuk, Justine Abdelshahid and Benjamin Brunson (Photo Credit: YFile News)

Lassonde students Stephen Kosmachuk, Justine Abdelshahid and Benjamin Brunson
(Photo Credit: YFile News)

The primary objective of the event is to challenge students to use their technical Geographic Information Systems (GIS) knowledge, creativity and ability to innovate and work together to produce a relevant and functional app using the Esri platform. This year’s theme was sustainable transportation.

Deteriorating transportation infrastructure is becoming an increasingly important issue in aging cities. Lassonde’s team developed an app that seeks to satisfy the need to gather and analyze crucial traffic hazard data on a continuous basis.

This will provide the public with a means to report traffic hazards to city officials and to provide urban planning experts with a means of intuitively organizing and analyzing the crowd-sourced information. Their app can be accessed here.

The three Lassonde students have won a trip to the 2017 Esri User Conference in San Diego.

The team profile can be viewed here.

Field Survey Setup Competition



Total Station Setup Competition (Photo Credit: Mojgan Jadidi)

By: Mojgan Jadidi

As a tradition of each summer, ESSE 2630 Field Survey camp was offered for Second Year Geomatics Engineering/Science and  Civil Engineering students from April 25th to May 8th. There was a total of 68 students working within 13 groups, combining both Geomatics and Civil students. Per nature of field camp, the class always ran between 8:30 am and 9:00 pm with a combination of lecture, field, and office work.

As part of the assessment and to create fun ambiance at the end, a Total Station Setup Competition is conducted each year where students compete to have a proper set up (centre on the target and level) in the minimum amount of time. There are two categories of winners: a group winner and an individual winner.

This year, the competition ended with setup champions as follows:


Individual Winner:


Congratulations to Philip Marano, individual winner of the Total Station Setup Competition! (Photo Credit: Mojgan Jadidi)

Philip Marano (Civil Eng, 1 min 07 sec)

Group Winner: Group 08 with average 1 min 37 sec

Naveen Faizaan GE

Chapman Ryder CE

Kaimgi Zaid CE

Patel Preet CE

Valadao Ryan CE

Farquhar Dion GE


The field survey camp has ended successfully in a great ambiance and satisfaction, despite fatigue and hard work of all the students, TAs, and the instructor. All Geomatics and Civil students enjoyed working together and gaining experience from each other.



Poster Coffee Talks by ESS Graduate Student Association

Throughout the Fall 2016—Winter 2017 academic school year, the ESS Graduate Student Association has organized weekly Graduate Colloquium Series, where students had an opportunity to present their research to both their peers and faculty members. The weekly presentations will stop for the Summer semester.

Photo Credit: Kajendra Seevananthan


Surveying Camp

Summer geomatics field courses are in progress. Despite the rain, students are committed to completing their tasks!

Photo Credit: Tetiana Sitiugina

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Engineering Ski Trip to Snow Valley

On February 21st, Lassonde Engineering Society in collaboration with the ESS Graduate Student Association has organized a ski trip to Snow Valley Resort, Barrie. Both undergraduate and graduate students had a chance to take a break from studying and spend a fun day skiing or snowboarding.


Geomatics Career Fair 2017

On February 3rd, Geomatics students had an opportunity to meet with potential employers at the 6th Annual Geomatics Career Fair, which was organized by the Geomatics Club at York. Participating companies included J.D. Barnes Limited, EXP Geomatics Inc., Association of Ontario Land Surveyors, Applanix Corporation, Esri Canada, City of Missisauga, The Airborne Sensing Corporation, and Canadian Insitiution of Geomatics.

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Photo Credit: Geomatics Club at York

Graduate Studies Open House

ESSE Department took part in the Lassonde School of Engineering’s inaugural Graduate Studies Open House on Tuesday, January 24th. Undergraduate and Master’s-level students had an opportunity to learn how Lassonde research is changing the world and how they can be a part of the experience.

GIS Day — November 16th

GIS (Geographic Information Systems) Day is an annual event first held on November 19, 1999 by the National Geographical Society (NGS), the Association of American Geographers (AAG), and ESRI. Since then, GIS Day is held on the third Wednesday of November each year during Geography Awareness Week.

This year, an event, which was organized by the Geomatics Club at YorkU for the GIS Day on November 16th, hosted guest speakers from Navmatica and ESRI: Mohamed Mostafa, Ph.D., Chief Technology Officer, and Brent Hall, Ph. D., Director, Education and Research.


Astronaut Jeremy Hansen Visits York

On October 12th, 2016, a modern day space explorer Jeremy Hansen has visited Bergeron Centre for Engineering Excellence to talk about his life as an astronaut, astronomy, and following your dreams.
Jeremy has wanted to be an astronaut for as long as he can remember and began flying at the age of 17; he eventually became a CF-18 fighter pilot.

Lassonde students met the astronaut Jeremy Hansen. (

Lassonde students met the astronaut Jeremy Hansen.

In 2009, he went on to be selected by the CSA from a pool of over 5,300 candidates to become one of two Canadian astronauts. Since then, his intensive astronaut training has included an abundance of out-of-this-world experiences like geological expeditions in the High Arctic, exploring alien caves, and conducting scientific experiments in weightlessness.

The event was emceed by two space engineering students, Sogand Talebi and Semi Hasaj.

by  Amal Dave