National Surveyors Week 2020
To close out National Surveyors Week, J2 Engineers spoke with Jon Overton, Survey Manager, to learn about what drew him to surveying and the technology he uses on the job. Jon has more than 22 years in the surveying industry, holds a BS from Virginia Tech, and is licensed in Virginia, West Virginia, Maryland, and Pennsylvania. Additionally, he is a certified FAA/NGS Aeronautical Surveyor.
J2: When did you know you wanted to get into the surveying field?
I was always a math person and enjoyed being outdoors. In college, we had field surveying classes running stadia with a plane table and alidade to create topo maps. It was refreshing to see the practical applications of math in the field.
After college, I worked in various surveying fields, including land development, transportation, and aviation, before joining J2, bringing my career full circle.
J2: Surveying is different than a typical 9-to-5 job. What is your typical day like and the benefits of the profession?
Surveying is unique in that you use a combination of book smarts and street smarts to be successful. You need to know the theory of surveying principles and then have the skill to apply them in the field practically. A typical day in surveying may include a range of challenges from chasing old deeds and manipulating LIDAR generated point clouds to going in the field to QA work and working with engineers at any stage in a project. The benefits of surveying, for me, center on the challenges and the people. The high-end survey technologies present challenges that keep me engaged in the work. The people in surveying and engineering are smart and interesting, and I enjoy working with them on projects.