Top Honors

While college sports fans across the country were focused on the NCAA basketball tournament, five Troy University students were participating in a little March madness of their own and have a national championship to show for it.

The students, representing the University's Surveying and Geomatics Sciences Program, recently bested other universities in the National Society of Professional Surveyors 10th annual Student Competition in Las Vegas, Nev., which included completing a project, a 30-page report, a poster and a 20-minute presentation.

The competition was on "Hydrographic Surveying," said Dr. David Griffin, an assistant professor who helped coordinate the team.

"The project included topographic and hydrographic surveys of Pike County Lake," he said. "The field survey results were combined with a digitized bathymetric chart, with the combined results used to perform a sedimentation survey of the 45-acre lake."

The team consisted of students Chase Boutwell, a senior from Elba, Lee Ferrell, a sophomore from Alpine, Michael Johnson, a junior from Cleveland, Robin McLendon, a senior from Goshen, and Wade Ward, a senior from Kinston.

The Department of Conservation and Natural Resources allowed students full access to the lake, which was closed to the public during the time the students needed to complete the field work. As an expression of their gratitude, the students presented a map showing the results of the Hydrographic Survey of Pike County Lake to the DCNR and to the community. The map has been installed as a permanent display at the lake, Dr. Griffin said.

Troy University surveying and geomatics students took first place nationally in the National Society Professional Surveyors 10th Annual Student Competition. A. Wayne Harrison, left, president of the NSPS, presented the students a medal and a crystal bowl trophy for their efforts. Students Lee Ferrell, Michael Johnson, Chase Boutwell, Robin McLendon, Wade Ward and NSPS president-elect William Coleman participated in the award ceremony.