Geographic Information Systems have been a part of the Columbia campus since the mid-1980s. We were an early user of various software and systems from a number of different vendors and Federal agencies. The continuity with GIS was solidified in 1989 when the campus signed a license agreement with Environmental Systems Research Institute for a software site license. From that license, which has distributed software to hundreds of users in the past 20 years, arose the Campus GIS Support program.
Support for GIS software, instruction, and research has evolved into a participant-based funding model shared among a number of departments, institutional units and research groups. These commitments allow all participants to receive ESRI software (that are covered under our license agreement), installation assistance and software support. A full support participation level also gives access to the support staff for: GIS software and methodological consultation on desktop and client-server applications, access to ESRI Online Courses, and the use of equipment acquired through the support funds.