The Interdisciplinary Centre for the Development of Ocean Mapping (CIDCO) is a marine geomatics Research and Development (R&D) organization located in Rimouski, Quebec, Canada. It is dedicated to the enhancement of state-of-the-art technology for marine geomatics. CIDCO is a not-for-profit organization answering the R&D, support and training needs of the Quebec maritime industry and the community at large.
As part of its training activities and with support of the Quebec provincial government, CIDCO is developing an intensive training course devoted to the promotion of hydrography in colleges (phase I), high schools (phase II), and universities (phase III). The phase I edition, which seeks to motivate potential candidates from the Quebec colleges, was held in January 2014 in cooperation with the Canadian Hydrographic Service, the Canadian Hydrographic Association, CARIS and the geomatics department of CEGEP Limoilou. During a two-day boot camp the students were asked to plan a hydrographic survey and then, from an existing dataset, to perform a complete bathymetric data processing workflow in CARIS HIPS and SIPS. On a volunteer basis, more than 30 students took part in the event and the feedback was excellent. Following the success of the first edition of phase I, CIDCO is now offering this activity to all colleges with a geomatics program.
In parallel, phase II of the program targeting high school students was explored. CIDCO tested the concept with the event called Girls and science, an electrifying duo, an activity aiming to promote careers in sciences and technology for 13-15 year-old girls. Over the course of a 75 minute activity, 15 girls were asked to identify a specific wreck from three datasets, according to its theoretical measurements. To do so the concepts of heading, attitude, tide and sound velocity correction were introduced and performed in CARIS HIPS and SIPS. The activity was well received and provided good input to prepare phase II of CIDCO’s hydrography intensive training course.
As another attempt to increase the interest and the level of hydrographic training in Canada, CIDCO is currently developing a course in hydrographic surveying aimed at students with a minimum of two years of education in geomatics. The course is under review by the FIG/IHO/ICA International Board for Standards of Competence for Nautical Hydrographers and Cartographers, and seeks recognition from the Board in category B, a standardized training that is not currently available in Canada.