March Madness

Okay, maybe not the March Madness you’re thinking of, but this is a busy month in the survey world, too. As happens this time every year, we celebrate National Surveyors Week, March 20 – 26. Hopefully by now you’ve seen the notices for NSPS’ event, Surveying USA, which will be held on the 19th to kick off the week. If not, I encourage you to visit the NSPS website for more information. As always, these events are designed to bring greater public awareness of the surveying profession. We surveyors complain about the public not knowing what we do; by greater participation in events such as these, we can all help to change that.

March also brings us the vernal equinox and the coming of spring. And as we look forward to the change in seasons, we also look north at a big change happening in Canada. In our Northern Lights column this month you can read about a new organization, formed by Canadian surveyors to enable them to speak as one. Professional Surveyors Canada is the result of Canada’s 35-year-old Canadian Council of Land Surveyors (CCLS) learning from its strengths and weaknesses. CCLS was formed as a cooperative among the 11 licensing bodies to facilitate communication and establish a common, national set of core educational requirements. The new association evolves from CCLS while serving more as an advocacy group for professional surveyors. It will focus on establishing frameworks that encourage surveyors to work as a single, nationwide community to promote and support the profession. The pride and excitement surrounding this effort is clearly evident in Denis Blais’ article.

Promoting and supporting surveying and the related professions has been the primary aim of the American Congress on Surveying and Mapping (ACSM) for 70 years now. It has seen its share of peaks and valleys over that time, and its current state of affairs has been the topic of much conversation lately. Just two months ago, in this very space, ACSM executive director Curt Sumner penned an open letter to our profession extolling the importance of, and need for, a strong national voice. ACSM has its share of critics, some rightly so, but I think most of us should know by now that if we leave our fate up to someone else, they will decide it for us. Henry Tillman is quoted as saying, “If you’re not part of the solution, you’re part of the precipitate” (gotta love good chemistry humor…). As ACSM explores its regenesis: speak up; let your voice be heard if you have a suggestion; be part of the solution. Perhaps we might also look north and see what we can learn from their experiences and efforts?

We here at Professional Surveyor Magazine have worked hard to develop strong relationships with both our northerly and southerly neighbors, and we are excited to announce that members of the new Professional Surveyors Canada will receive a copy of our magazine every month, free of charge. This is the second such arrangement with a Canadian organization, as members of ACLS already receive each issue of our publication.

This month also hosts a number of major industry shows, including ConExpo in Las Vegas and SPAR in Houston—two great venues where you can seek new knowledge and opportunities. As I said, it’s a busy month! We’ll see you on the road.


About the Author

  • TJ Frazier, LS
    TJ Frazier, LS
    TJ Frazier is the magazine's editor for surveying and has more than 20 years experience in the surveying profession, currently as senior land surveyor for VanMar Associates in Mt. Airy, Md. He also worked in survey equipment sales for Loyola Spatial Systems, now part of Leica Geosystems. He earned a bachelor of sciences degree in business at Mt. St. Mary’s University in Emmitsburg, Md. He is married and has two daughters. Frazier can be reached at

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