Nicholls Geomatics Student Awarded Prestigious Professional Scholarship

Career Day Headshots 2018 (Misty Leigh McElroy/Nicholls State University) 10/3/18

THIBODAUX, La. — The American Society for Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing has awarded Nicholls State University student Ashish Pandey with a  scholarship. 

The Nepal native is the recipient of the $7,000 Francis Moffit Memorial Scholarship. Pandey, a junior geomatics major, said the money gives him peace of mind to focus on his academics and not on how to pay for college. 

“I could not believe myself when I got the email notification; I had to check to make sure it wasn’t spam,” Pandey said. “To receive a scholarship from the highest value from such a reputed organization is unbelievable for me.” 

This is not the first time Pandey has been recognized. In the Fall, the National Society of Professional Surveyors Foundation awarded Pandey with the Nettite Dracup Memorial Scholarship. 

Pandey is a research assistant for Dr. Balaji Ramachandran, geomatics program coordinator. Together, they are working on multiple research projects including studying a new data fusion and analytics method for monitoring sugarcane crops, and another involving developing an algorithm to better define wetland loss and gain in the Mississippi Delta. 

“Ashish has demonstrated critical thinking skills, understanding complex concepts, and a level of commitment necessary to succeed in college and beyond,” Dr. Ramachandran said. 

Pandey, who grew up in the rural municipality of Kaligandaki with a similar population as Thibodaux, is enrolled at Nicholls to advance his family’s legacy. 

“I chose geomatics because I wanted to complete what my father could not complete with a degree,” he said. “I love working with numbers, so this combination of passion and inspiration lead me down this path. And there is not a second that I regret it because it has been worth every penny and second of time I have invested in it. Nicholls State University has been a home away from home.” 

His goal after graduation is to pursue a graduate degree in geomatics and computer data science. 

“The Francis Moffit Memorial Scholarship is a prestigious award given out to only one student in the nation every year,” Dr. Ramachandran said. “It is a pleasure to see one of my students receive that honor, and it also reflects on the quality of the geomatics education provided at Nicholls.” 

The Nicholls Geomatics Program aims to provide its graduates with professional surveying and mapping education. The program offers students unique research and outreach opportunities, often involving protecting the Louisiana coast. The field is listed as one of the top 3 emerging industries by the U.S. Department of Labor and U.S. Department of Education.For more information on Nicholls Geomatics, visit

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Monday, April 19, 2021

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