Gateway Global American Youth and Business Alliance Academies Inc. (GGAYBA), a St. Louis, Missouri-based workforce development nonprofit, announced a $25 million project to develop a geospatial and information technology training campus in north St. Louis.
The proposed Geospatial & IT Workforce and Apprenticeship Campus (GIWAC) is expected to include a two-story, 36,000 square foot geospatial simulation theater to offer experiential learning opportunities, as well as workforce development and job training hubs.
The project is the brainchild of GGAYBA, a workforce development organization focused on providing education and workforce development initiatives in science, technology, education and mathematics (STEM) fields. The nonprofit says it’s the only group in the U.S. that has been accredited by the United States Geospatial Intelligence Foundation to “train and credential in geospatial intelligence at the high school level.”
GIWAC will be located within close proximity to the National Geospatial Intelligence Agency’s new western regional headquarters. NGA West represents a $1.7 billion investment and exemplifies the explosive growth of the geospatial ecosystem in St. Louis, of which NGA is just one active member.
St. Louis has earned a reputation in recent years as a global leader in the geospatial technology sector. GIWAC will continue to bolster that reputation, while also working to provide geospatial education in the neighborhoods around NGA West that have been historically underserved.
“The GeoFutures Strategic Roadmap was intentional in calling out the need to support community-led development in the neighborhoods where NGA is building its new campus as well as the need to scale up talent and workforce development. Gateway Global’s proposed developments move both of those strategic priorities forward,” said Jason Hall, CEO of Greater St. Louis, Inc. “What Zekita Armstrong Asuquo and Gateway Global are doing to transform these neighborhoods and to inspire and train the geospatial workforce of the future is nothing short of amazing.”
The GeoFutures Initiative was announced in 2019 and works to create a shared vision and align the efforts of many people and institutions towards the common goal of making St. Louis the nation’s geospatial center of excellence.
Missouri has seen a wave of geospatial initiatives over the past few months. Check out these articles below for more geospatial news: