News

COMMENCEMENT 2020 PROFILE: TYLER SPELLMAN - Geography and Urban Planning Major

Tyler Spellman

It would take more than a spinal injury that sidelined his Division I soccer career during his freshman year to stop Tyler Spellman from achieving his goals.

From Melville, Long Island, Spellman came to Binghamton to play goalie for the Bearcats men’s soccer team but had to take a medical withdrawal after his first season of play. He spent most of the second semester of his freshman year at home, recuperating. “I didn’t want to risk my life with what was going on. I just wanted to get better,” Spellman said. “So, I went through a ton of medical issues for months, doctors and more doctors, injections and procedures, the whole nine yards. It was pretty scary, but I came out stronger. It needed time.”

Never healthier than now, Spellman recalled not even wanting to consider Binghamton when he was being recruited to play soccer, but his parents urged him to visit. “The second I stepped on campus I knew right away, this is meant for me,” he said. “This is where I was supposed to be.”

And he solidified his calling while on campus. While healing he realized that education was what he had always enjoyed. “Throughout high school, I always worked with kids,” he said. “It is just my passion. I was a counselor, a teacher’s assistant over the summers and it just resonated with me. I knew this was meant for me. Click to continue...

First Year Geography MA Students Cope with COVID-19 Crisis and Social Distancing

Erik Amos

First Year MA Student Erik Amos and his secret formula to replicate the taste of 1977-era Doritos

The Department of Geography knows that a lot of students have had challenges adjusting to remote learning, and in the case of TAs, remote teaching. The Department has regularly reached out to students to check on their well-being since the transition to online classes directive was issued on March 16. A series of questions was recently sent to our graduate students seeking feedback on the challenges, if any, they experience as a result of SARS-CoV-2 (novel coronavirus/COVID -19) including online learning, thesis research during social distancing, and in the case of TAs, teaching remotely. We include the responses of two first-year graduate students below.

Erik Amos

Since I'm new to this program, COVID has not (yet) explicitly disrupted my data collection or timeline. I don't yet have a thesis title, set topic, or advisor.
I have not moved (still at home, here in Ithaca). All that said, it did affect me in a number of ways. My family (wife - teaching, and daughter - student) are also zooming for their classes. Bandwidth has been an issue. I am no longer commuting to anything (maybe you can relate?), nor is anyone else in the house. My work supporting the food coop is all done remotely now. I am observing A LOT more people walking and biking around (more on that below) here in suburbia. I am the cook in the house, and that has become more involved with pretty much all meals happening here. I don't bake per se, but I have dug out my thrift store bread machine. I have also come close to replicating the actual 1970's Doritos flavor.
Going forward, I am curious how this will impact courses I hope to take in the Fall (e.g. drones) and how I might support courses and faculty as a TA. I'm hoping to connect with some of the current TA's for help with that aspect. COVID has certainly affected plans for tackling certain topics, as I don't expect to travel overseas, or really even to other cities in the US until vaccines, treatment, and testing are developed and/or improved - which means probably not during the next year and a half. However, looking at active transportation and pedestrian spaces - which was and still is my primary interest - we are seeing massive shifts in what people do, how they get around, and how spaces are used - as well as how cities are officially allocating space. I don't feel like my topic has been made obsolete by recent events. In fact, I feel like it is more relevant than ever. However, the specific question is more up in the air, as are the methods for answering it. I hope to feel more certain about my research by the Fall.

Katie Bulger

I decided to stay in Binghamton rather than go back to Syracuse. I have a summer research position here so I’m concerned that I will not be able to do that and I’ll have to get a job in Binghamton, likely at a grocery store and put myself at risk. It has already affected me because my family was supposed to take a trip to Germany for Oktoberfest and the event was cancelled. 
I want to add that I think the University did a good job of responding quickly and made the transition to online as well as they could have. Online learning via Zoom isn’t a really big roadblock for me, but the lack of motivation and productivity from being at home is. I really hope we don’t continue online next semester but if that’s what we need to do to keep at risk students and faculty safe then I will stay at home as long as needed!

Geography Professor John Frazier Among 17 Binghamton University Employees Who Deserve Appreciation

In honor of National Employee Appreciation Day, we asked the Binghamton University community to nominate their favorite employees on campus. It could be a professor, a student employee, dining hall staff - anybody who stands out! We got an incredible number of responses, and it was hard to filter through them all. Here are a few of the nominees, with a little bit about what makes them so special. They all go above and beyond, and campus wouldn't be the same without them. Thanks to everyone who nominated someone!

 John Frazier

 “From the first time I met Professor Frazier, I knew he cared deeply for his students. One of the first times I interacted with John was the day of the 2011 flood. He came into the classroom as I was reading and informed me campus was closing and to make sure I got home safely… After completing undergrad, John also went out of his way to help me obtain funding for grad school… Aside from him helping me personally, if you've met John you know he works hard to make sure all of his students take advantage of their time at Binghamton and will help them achieve their goals, no matter what.” - Stephanie Brewer

PUTTING COMMUNITY MEALS ON THE MAP
Geography graduate student Ben Levine turned asset mapping into a community resource

When Ben Levine, a first-year graduate student studying geography, began a tutoring internship as an undergraduate, he had no idea it would inspire an even larger project.

In his time at Binghamton University, Levine has been working on a number of local and upstate New York issues, such as food insecurity and environmental health. Originally from the St. Louis, Mo., area, Levine calls Binghamton his adopted home and his love for both the city and its people is reflected in his idea to create and distribute a map of free community meals for students and others facing food insecurity. (more)

Geography graduate student Ben Levine created an asset map that shows the locations of free meals in the local community. The map makes it easier for those suffering from food insecurity to access meals at no cost. Image Credit: Laura Guerrero.

Geography graduate student Ben Levine created an asset map that shows the locations of free meals in the local community. The map makes it easier for those suffering from food insecurity to access meals at no cost. Image Credit: Laura Guerrero.

Congratulations to Professor Mark Reisinger for receiving the 2018-2019 University Award for Excellence in International Education!

This award is a special honor that recognizes exemplary contributions to international education at Binghamton University.

Mark Reisinger in China

Professor Mark Reisinger at the foot of Mount Huangshan in China. Often described as the “loveliest mountain of China”, Mount Huangshan has played an important role in the history of art and literature in China since the Tang Dynasty around the 8th century. It was named a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1990 for its scenery and for its role as a habitat for rare and threatened species.

The Binghamton University Geography Department's J. C. Redevelopment Team presents on Johnson City's resurgence at the Binghamton University School of Pharmacy - October 16, 2019

JOHNSON CITY (WBNG) — At the Binghamton University School of Pharmacy, a presentation was given on Johnson City’s resurgence.

Residents came out to hear what updates officials have on the area’s restoration and even learned a little about its history, demonstrating with state of the art technology.

Distinguished B.U. Geography professors John Frazier and Norah Henry were guest speakers. They shared with stakeholders how local businesses are doing. They say in the past few years, many new ones have sprouted up and vacant buildings are quickly being filled, which they say will eventually boost the economy.

“There are more eateries and other things. So those are going to change on Main street. But beyond Main street, Grand avenue, Floral, other parts of the village are gonna change as well,” said Frazier.

The pharmacy school’s dean shared the progress of the school. Along with its initiative to become a nationally renowned school, officials say it is increasing the village’s foot traffic and expect that to rise even more when it becomes fully accredited in 2021.

Binghamton University Department of Geography's annual Welcome Back Picnic - August 23, 2019

2019 GRADUATE STUDENT EXCELLENCE AWARDS: Geography Graduate Student Recognized for SERVICE/OUTREACH

Frank Tolbert
Frank Tolbert

Frank Tolbert - Geography
Master's student Frank Tolbert's background in urban planning allowed him to develop a detailed understanding of issues affecting Broome County families. His research helped create reports for the county Department of Social Services, and his findings from the Johnson City Redevelopment Project were presented at the Race, Ethnicity, and Place ninth edition conference. Tolbert, a Clark Fellow, is also both a graduate research assistant and teaching assistant, as well as the president of the Geography Graduate Student Organization.

BU receives $30 million in state funding to complete Health Sciences Campus: Professor John Frazier, team leader for the Johnson City Revitalization Project, quoted in Pipe Dream article.

Decker School of Nursing

Binghamton University received $30 million from New York state to complete the Decker School of Nursing, which will be housed at 48 Corliss Ave. at the new Health Sciences Campus in Johnson City.

With an extra $30 million in funding from New York state, Binghamton University is on its way to completing the Health Sciences Campus in Johnson City.

The funding, which will help complete the Decker School of Nursing relocation at 48 Corliss Ave., is part of the Southern Tier Upstate Revitalization Initiative (URI) that was created by Governor Andrew Cuomo in 2015.

Read more here

JC Presentation to NYC Alumni at Princeton Club

Frazier
 

Professors John Frazier (pictured right) and Norah Henry, Department of Geography, presented "The Revitalization of Johnson City: Monitoring Attitudes and Patterns of a Changing Community" to the New York City Alumni Association on January 25th at the Princeton Club in Manhattan. Approximately 20 alumni attended the presentation.

Geography Visiting Professor Laura Pangallozzi Takes Part in Water Quality Forum

In 2017, Binghamton's water system served 1,263,688,404 gallons of water to 44,564 people, according to the city's official website. Now, students are starting discussions on whether this water is as clean as it should be.

A panel of five speakers, each experts of different aspects of local environmentalism, took part in a discussion about Broome County's water systems on ... (read more)

Laura Pangallozzi

Professor Laura Pangallozzi (second from left) serves as an environmental expert at a panel discussion to educate the community on local water safety, The forum was hosted by Binghamton University's chapter of the New York Public Interest Research Group (NYPIRG).

Professor John Frazier Receives Provost's Award For Faculty Excellence In Undergraduate Research Mentoring

The Provost's Award for Faculty Excellence in Undergraduate Research Mentoring honors Binghamton University faculty who have demonstrated an extraordinary commitment as mentors of Binghamton's undergraduate students in research, scholarship or creative activities outside of normal course assignments. Congratulations to John Frazier!

John Frazier receives award from President Harvey Stenger

Geography Professor John Frazier receives the Provost's Award for Faculty Excellence in Undergraduate Research Mentoring from Binghamton University President Harvey Stenger at the Excellence Awards Dinner on October 9, 2018.

Geography Students Recognized for Research

Binghamton University Geography students Frank Tolbert and Winnie Ngare received 2nd Place (Frank) and Honorable Mention (Winnie) at the Race, Ethnicity and Place Conference Poster Competition in Austin, Texas. A big congratulations to Frank and Winnie, both second year MA students who were in competition with PhD students!

Frank Tolbert & Winnie Ngare

 View Frank Tolbert's poster here

View Winnie Ngare's poster here

Professor Qiusheng Wu has U.S. Patent Approved

Geography Professor Qiusheng Wu's U.S. Patent Application been officially approved and issued on October 9, 2018. The patent is for a localized contour tree method for deriving geometric and topological properties of complex surface depressions based on high-resolution topographic data (click here for detailed description).

Congratulations Professor Wu!

Professor Qiusheng Wu

Binghamton University Earns 2018 Top Ranking for Geography & Cartography Program

Binghamton University performed especially well in a recent ranking of geography & cartography degree programs. College Factual ranks programs offered by 4-year U.S. Colleges and Universities and has recently updated their 2018 rankings.

Binghamton University's geography & cartography program was ranked 23 out of 172 nationwide. This makes Binghamton University one of the top programs in the U.S. to study geography & cartography,

Binghamton Geography, and particularly emphasis on the applied side of the discipline, provided me with a strong foundation with which I developed my career. As my responsibilities shifted to focus on more strategic assessments of our portfolio, the common skill required has been the ability to analyze and interpret data. In an organization where more and more decisions are coming to rely on analytics, having these skills and approaching problems from a spatial perspective has been an asset. I am grateful to the Binghamton University Geography Department for helping me develop these skills.


- David McAleese, BA Class of 2004, MA Class of 2006, Vice President of Macy's Area Research

Binghamton University's geography & cartography program has also been ranked 3 out of 9 in the state of New York. This means the geography & cartography program at Binghamton University is in the top 5 in New York... CONTINUE

Professor Louisa Holmes' GEOG 481C/581F Urban Health and the Built Environment Class - Spring 2018

It is 'cookie time' after a long and productive semester.  Professor Holmes and her students spent the past 16 weeks examining local and regional domains of health and chronic disease, with specific attention to the ways in which urban neighborhood features combine with individual-level behaviors and social interaction to produce health and disease. They tackled issues such as urban planning and policy, social determinants, parks and green space, crime, residential segregation and health care access. Professor Holmes offers this course every year. Be sure to register early as the seats fill very quick!

Lousa Holmes Course Spring 2018

GEOGRAPHY DEPARTMENT TO TRACK IMPACT OF PHARMACY SCHOOL ON JOHNSON CITY

Story map will track changes before, after schools open

BINGHAMTON UNIVERSITY MAGAZINE: April 19, 2018
Twenty-five years from now, some journalist or scholar will want to assess the impact of Binghamton University's Health Sciences Campus on the Johnson City neighborhood where it's being built. Lucky for that person, the research has already started.

The Johnson City Revitalization Project is a story map — an online collection of data, interviews, photos and videos — that documents what's going on today in order to provide a baseline against which future data can be measured. The School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences is expected to open this summer, and the Decker School of Nursing building is under construction.

The Geography Department's Distinguished Service Professor John Frazier is leading the story map effort, with help from undergraduate and graduate students, and geography faculty and staff. The project organizes information in a manner that tells the story of the revitalization process and is able to track changes going forward.... CONTINUE

The study area surrounds the Health Sciences Campus. A series of maps show demographics, crime reports, property values, land use and more.

The study area surrounds the Health Sciences Campus. A series of maps show demographics, crime reports, property values, land use and more.

Undergraduate Research

Nine seniors met the requirements to enroll in a capstone course (Geography 482) taught by Professor Frazier in Spring 2018. This "Applied Urban Research" combined urban theory with GIS Story Map to extend a project based in the JC Revitalization Project focused on the Health Sciences Campus to a new study area surrounding the new Koffman Southern Tier Incubator in downtown Binghamton. This very limited introductory research effort will lead to continuing research in the City of Binghamton. These students were invited to showcase their research at an event on May 4 at the Koffman Center.
The students are shown here with Professor John Frazier presenting their research at Binghamton University's Research Days on Friday, April 20th, 2018.

Geog Situation


From left to right: Jesus Raul Cepin, Christabel Martinez, Cliff Marks, Joshua Gonzalez, Elvis Huang, Dylan Markowitz, Randy Lupin, Dylan Stackpole, Evan Larson, Professor John Frazier.

Cultural connections at BU

Li Xi, Geography Master's student from China, shares her experience

Pipe Dream Prism
By Kara Jillian Brown - April 15, 2018

When Li Xi visits a new country, she's not only interested in the culture, but also the physical geography of the area.

"Whenever my parents took me to travel, I was always interested in the topographical history of that specific area," Xi said. "I figured out that I was the only one who was super interested in it."

Now a second-year graduate student studying cartography and geographical information systems, Xi has been able to turn that affinity into a future career... CONTINUE

Li Xi

 Li Xi, a second-year graduate student studying cartography and geographical information systems, won the 2017 SUNY Chancellor's Award for Student Excellence.
(photo by Noah Bressner)

Student Examines Campus' Effect on Neighborhood:

Joshua Gonzalez is part of a team of faculty, staff and students conducting a novel study of the community near Binghamton's pharmacy school. Read More...

JC Project Team

Team members Joshua Gonzalez, Kevin Heard, Lucius Willis, and Alexandros Balili

Geography Department Holds Third Annual GIS Day:

Stenger aims to use system to better local community

Kevin Heard and Lucius Willis presents Courtney Zirkel with an award at the third annual GIS Day, hosted by the geography department, on Friday.

GIS day organizers Kevin Heard and Lucius Willis present Geography Graduate Student Courtney Zirkel with an award for her presentation at the third annual GIS Day, hosted by the Geography Department, on Friday, February 16.

Read More about GIS Day
 GIS Day Photos:
Twitter:  https://twitter.com/BU_Geography/status/964664664377450498
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pg/BinghamtonGeography/photos/?tab=album&album_id=1832742703417062
Dropbox:  https://www.dropbox.com/sh/qp0d5paf7u7e12f/AADfplYmKvAQen821NHUxMJ8a?dl=0

Geography 151 Builds Bridge Between Two Continents; class taught by Mark Reisinger links high schoolers in China with University freshmen

Mark Reisinger

Mark Reisinger, an associate professor of geography, poses in front of his collection of Chinese memorabilia. Reisinger has accumulated many gifts from former URP students, as gift-giving is an important aspect of Chinese culture.

Read More about Mark Reisinger and Geography 151

Graduate Student Orientation: August 21, 2017

Geography Student Wins Chancellor's Award

The Chancellor's Award for Student Excellence honors State University of New York students who have best demonstrated and been recognized for their integration of academic excellence with other aspects of their lives, which may include leadership, campus involvement, athletics, career achievement, community service or creative and performing arts.

Commencement 2017 Profile: Frank Tolbert

Frank Tolbert

Frank Tolbert received his bachelor's degree in geography from Binghamton University where he is remaining to pursue his master's degree.

Learn more about Tolbert's work and experiences at Binghamton University