Destination Lab "Integrating Geospatial Technologies into 21st Century Management" Interactive, Hands-On Training To Be Launched in Celebration, Florida

    HUNTSVILLE, Ala.--Jan. 31, 2001--Today, Geospatial technology is essential in finding solutions to real-life problems in our businesses, our communities and our lives. GIS (geographic information system) has become the "management tool for the new millennium", as it allows professionals to collect real-time data and attach it to images and information needed to solve problems.
    The U.S. Space & Rocket Center(R) and Stanford Research Institute, International (SRI) the world's largest independent, nonprofit R&D organization, have joined together to develop Destination Lab(TM), an interactive training experience for those who plan and manage our resources, cities, states, and counties.
    Destination Lab is not your typical GIS seminar, workshop or conference. It is a field-based, hands-on, interactive training retreat that actively involves each participant. Destination Lab engages participants in a non-stop, three-and-a-half day experience that immerses them in the "community of practice". In addition to interacting with some of the country's leading geospatial technologists and practitioners, the participants will be challenged to utilize GIS, GPS and remote sensing technology in a project based environment to solve real-world problems.
    Each Destination Lab is limited to 30 participants and custom-designed to meet the specific needs of the audience. The first Destination Lab, "Integrating Geospatial Technologies into 21st Century Management", to be held February 25-28, 2001, targets city/state planners, municipal staff and managers, emergency managers, metropolitan master planners, developers, city officials, and those wanting to increase productivity and efficiency. This Lab will be held in Celebration, Florida. Celebration, one of the country's newest, most innovative cities, is an ideal "classroom" and case study for this educational experience. It is located just 4 miles from Epcot(R) where participants will enjoy entertainment during the closing ceremony of the training "retreat". The venue for this location, and all Destination Lab locations, was selected because it is a perfect fit for the topic. In fact, the location itself becomes part of the curriculum in the interactive, hands-on experience.
    Lyna Wiggins, president of URISA, will address the group and offer case studies, share new concepts for spatial technologies and have one-on-one interaction with the participants. Also, as a part of the Destination Lab experience, teams of participants are assigned a professional who acts as a mentor-- a leader who guides, directs and inspires the team. Each team will gather data from the field experiences then enter it into project computers and process the information in exercises that will demonstrate practical applications. Unlike other educational programs, Destination Lab is totally interactive, enabling participants to take home valuable knowledge of applications that can be used to benefit their community, company or organization.
    "The Destination Lab experience is the culmination of many years of research, study, and development," states Dr. Tommie Blackwell, Senior Vice President of Spatial Technologies for the U.S. Space & Rocket Center, located in Huntsville, Alabama. "The collaboration between our organization and SRI has been a great experience. For over 50 years, SRI has excelled at researching, creating, applying, and bringing new discoveries to the marketplace worldwide. The U.S. Space & Rocket Center has over 20 of years experience in designing, developing and implementing innovative interactive educational programs around the world. Together we are taking spatial technology training to the next level with the Destination Lab concept."

    In addition to "Integrating Geospatial Technologies into 21st Century Management," other Destination Labs will be offered starting in March. Destination Lab for Water Resource Management will explore issues concerning water resource management, EPA, farm topics, government mandates, water rights and the Clean Water Act. The lab will be located in one of Orlando's premier locations and is ideal for government and the private sector. The oldest city in Florida, St. Augustine, is the venue selected for a special Destination Lab where historic redevelopment and preservation professionals will explore the latest GIS applications as they apply to advancing infrastructure, growth management, historical preservation, and archeology. For more information and registration, visit the Destination Lab Web site at or call Chris Johnson, Director of Destination Lab, at the U.S. Space & Rocket Center at 256-721-7104 or email: