Digital Quest’s STARS Certification Selected for Department of Labor’s National Standards of Apprenticeship for Geospatial Technician

July 26, 2007 -- Digital Quest, Inc. is pleased to announce that the national Spatial Technology And Remote Sensing Geospatial Apprenticeship Program (STARS Geo AP) has adopted the STARS certification curriculum materials as part of the National Standards of Apprenticeship developed in cooperation with the U.S. Department of Labor’s Office of Apprenticeship for the occupation of Geospatial Technician.

The Spatial Technology And Remote Sensing Geospatial Apprenticeship Program (STARS Geo AP) was established to increase the level of skilled workers in the Geospatial Industry based on national industry-backed standards. The program provides a standardized way for schools, individuals, and employers to train skilled workers for geospatial jobs. The combination of on-the-job learning (OJL) and the successful completion of the STARS certification materials will result in well-rounded, competent Geospatial Technicians for the geospatial field, one of the fastest growing career fields in the U.S.

“We recognized that the responsibility for training rests with those in industry who are the benefactors of a skilled workforce,” stated Eddie Hanebuth of Digital Quest, Inc. “In order to maintain the high level of competence demanded by the geospatial industry, the STARS Geo AP Executive Board was made up of industry leaders and employers who were critical in formulating and adopting the National Apprenticeship Standards for the training of apprentices in this industry.”

STARS (Spatial technology and remote sensing) is a fully developed “turn-key” Certification program for high schools, colleges, and universities as well as career professionals looking to integrate geospatial tools into their on-on-the job skill set. STARS certification, offered by DigitalQuest, Inc., is supported by the companies in the Center of Geospatial Excellence located at NASA’s John C. Stennis Space Center. STARS is an output driven, competency-based program in which students master the use of geospatial problem solving, software, data, and tools standard in the geospatial industry.

The suggested work activities and the correlating STARS coursework are designed to allow for individualized training and work assignments. The company and customer needs determine the key deliverables required of the apprentice. The core requirements include a term of twelve to twenty-four months with a minimum of 1,000 documented OJL hours as well as the STARS certification coursework. This combination of on-the-job learning and geospatial studies allows for multiple exit and entry points based on the individual apprentice and the organizations’ needs.

“We believe that the most practical, well established, and sound method of preparing geospatial employees is through registered apprenticeship programs,” said Craig Harvey, CIO of NVision Solutions and a member of the STARS Geo AP Executive Board. “An apprenticeship program allows for training under actual job conditions supervised by experienced geospatial workers. Using the STARS certification along with this on-the-job training will create both a knowledgeable and experienced geospatial worker. This is a strategy that will greatly benefit both the employee and the employer.”

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Digital Quest, Inc. is a Mississippi-based development and training oriented company with a primary focus of enabling educational institutions to provide skill training in the new and ever-more vital field of Geospatial Technology. Digital Quest, an active member of Mississippi’s geospatial technology cluster, is headquartered in Ridgeland, Mississippi and operates the SPACESTARS Geospatial Training Laboratory at NASA’s Stennis Space Center. Digital Quest serves as a member of the SkillsUSA National Geospatial Competition technical committee. For more information about Digital Quest, visit www.digitalquest.com or contact Eddie Hanebuth at 1-877-573-6683, Email Contact.


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