From Carol Fitzgerald (MACA – Secretary)
Tom Mueller, Adjunct GIS professor at Northeastern University asked the MACA membership in July 2012 for crime data that his Geospatial Analysis of Crime class could utilize to learn not only how to map, but the importance of data integrity and basic police operations. He also believed in service learning – students working on real world projects to assist the community.
The City of Leominster, MA crime analysis section provided Dr. Mueller with the requested two years worth of crime data. After the class had ended, projects had been turned in and final grades were given out, Dr. Mueller was kind enough to send back the students’ final reports. Six final reports were completed, covering the topics of simple A&Bs, destruction of property, residential B&Es and drug activity reports, DUI, disorderly conduct and auto theft versus car breaks in the City of Leominster.
While all of the reports were comprehensive and fascinating to read, I was asked to choose one report I thought was the best put together. The report written on destruction of property in the City of Leominster by Esther Olson–Murphy was top-rated. The report was easy to read and follow and clearly broken up into appropriate headings. The maps were well constructed and when explained in text, again it was clear to understand what she was describing. The conclusion was strong, briefly restating the main points she discovered and offered some limitations with the data.
I thank Dr. Mueller for reaching out to our established and professional organization for crime data and encourage each member to consider providing crime data for use inside the classroom at any college or university. The findings they return can provide some meaningful insight to you as an analyst, assist the students in their learning environment and exposes them to a little of what we do each day.
You may read the paper here: Esther Olson-Murphy's Paperby