This talk provides a first-hand account from one of four NSF ATE grant PI’s on a mission to provide remote access to GIST education in and beyond Upstate New York. The speaker will review/elaborate on goals of the grant including building an A.A.S. Degree in GIST and an advanced GIST micro-credential by adding 3 new courses and updating existing courses. The GIST program has provided online students with an “Open” GIST lab with virtual student tutors and alumni GIST mentors, and virtual GIST internships. The PI’s have delivered innovative outreach to public and college librarians, who have in return given introductory GIS students support finding GIST data. Social media has played an important part in informing the GIST community about the program, including introductory GIST students and GIST Professionals. The talk will also include an overview on the status of the objectives, successes and obstacles, and the speaker’s personal perspective as a student turned educator/co-PI -a direct result of participating in the community college’s GIST program.