Into the World of Land Surveying
Author: Gordon Land, PSM | Director of Survey
An Exclusive Look Into the World of Land Surveying

In light of National Surveyors Week taking place March 19th-25th, it seems appropriate to discuss the incredible career opportunity of the surveyor — who surveyors are, what they do and why they do it.

Having enjoyed a career in surveying for over 30 years, the opportunities that abound, the places we can go, and the things we can do never cease to amaze me. For a person who enjoys change, this career path offers a new adventure almost daily. The technology available to surveyors has transformed by leaps and bounds and has allowed us to advance our craft in ways I never dreamed of as a young surveyor.

Who We Are:

Surveyors share a very rich heritage including three of the presidents on Mt. Rushmore. Can you guess who?

Q: Which three of the presidents featured on Mt. Rushmore are considered to be early American surveyors?
Before their time in office, these presidents shaped America through land surveying: George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, and Abraham Lincoln
A: George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, and Abraham Lincoln!

Surveyors are all born of the same blood, with a rich sense to do what’s right, a passion for the outdoors, an independent nature, and a strong desire for accomplishment. We come from all walks of life. Some, like myself, found themselves in the profession simply by accident and fell in love with it due to its variety and opportunities. For some, the profession was more of a deliberate path, either through family generational heritage or being exposed to the industry at a younger stage in life and making the decision to pursue surveying as a career path.

Still, for others, it was a well-placed job opportunity that turned slowly into a career. Whatever the reason for landing in this field, most of us are cut from the same cloth and understand each other.

CS surveyors handling equipment on-site

What We Do:

A land surveyor by quick definition is one who measures and maps the shape of the land. Surveyors are expert measurers. In performing these tasks, the land surveyor is, among many things, an artist and a scientist. The land surveyor applies wisdom gained through many years of field and office experience coupled with mathematical skills to arrive at boundary decisions, providing their client with the best solution possible.

A surveyor is often a combination of many personalities and skills, as he or she may be called upon to be a diplomat to aid in resolving neighborly disputes or participate in some sort of negotiation. The surveyor may need the skills of an attorney to interpret often confusing legal descriptions and understand how they interact with each other to provide fair and equitable boundary decisions to all.

The Surveyor is a Mathematician.

Surveyors frequently solve complex calculations to ensure buildings are erected correctly, roads are built as designed, and bridges stand where intended.

The Surveyor is a Woodsman.

Surveyors spend countless hours off the beaten path, blazing trails where others have not before set foot.

The Surveyor is a Historian.

Surveyors resurrect often ancient maps and documents from archives long since forgotten, then travel to the field to locate and measure the evidence found on those ancient maps set by the surveyors before them to understand how they best fit the rest of the world.

Most of All, the Surveyor is a Steward of the Past.

Surveyors establish new or retrace old boundaries and preserve them for those who follow in his or her footsteps. The surveyor is many things, a jack of all trades and master of most.

CS survey truck & equipment

Why We Do It:

Surveyors perform their tasks diligently with care not because they have to, but because they want to. The hours are often long. and the conditions are less than ideal. The problems are often perplexing. The surveyor may face deep snow, steep slopes, or blazing heat, but they do so because they enjoy it. Surveyors find a great sense of satisfaction in completing projects because they require both physical and mental fortitude to conclude. This career path allows those with an adventurous soul to work outdoors, traveling to many far-reaching places while also allowing for opportunities in a more controlled office environment.

We do it for the challenge. We do it for the constant change.

Get Involved:

Learn from a Surveyor! Our survey team will be attending Bonnet Springs Park’s (BSP) Full STEAM Ahead Engineering Day on Wednesday, March 15th, 2023 from 10:00 am – 2:00 pm.

Join us as we show guests how our team completed a tree survey for BSP prior to its construction and teach guests about the tools and equipment used to complete land surveys. A wonderful event for families, younger guests can also take part in activities provided by CS which will include a chance to “Create Your Own Survey.” Learn more about the Full STEAM Ahead by visiting BSP’s website.

CS “Survey School”; 2008

Talk With an Expert

Chastain-Skillman’s team of experienced surveyors are proud to serve the Southeast United States, from the communities surrounding our headquarters in Lakeland and Orlando, FL, all the way to Nashville, TN and beyond.

Our survey department works with both public and private sector clients, covering a wide range of project types that include shopping centers, hospitals, business parks, roadways, colleges, parks, airports, parking lots, and more. Our spectrum of services includes boundary & topographic surveying, construction stakeout, GPS, GIS database and mapping, horizontal and vertical control, final record surveys, and plat recording.

Need us for your next project? Give us a call at 888-646-1402 or visit us online to speak with a member of our team. We’re here to help!

Let’s start the conversation.

Gordon Land, Director of Survey

Gordon Land, PSM

Director of Survey

Based out of our Orlando office, Gordon Land, PSM, leads the CS survey department with a goal to grow and enhance our teams and project experience in Central Florida and Middle Tennessee.

Gordon is a licensed Professional Surveyor and Mapper (PSM) in both Florida and Alabama. His 30+ years of experience includes large and small boundary and topographic surveys, hydrographic surveys, construction surveys, 3D laser scanning, and UAV Pilot flying.

When he isn’t working with our team, Gordon enjoys spending time with his wife and sons out on their boat and “playing in the dirt” while driving in their Jeep. Gordon enjoys all things automotive and says he loves to spend time exploring and learning new skills, both in the automotive world and in life in general


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