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I might go into meteorology/atmospheric science

Posted: Sat Feb 10, 2018 8:19 pm
by NotSparta
(sorry for the bad title, wasn't quite sure how to word it :think:)

So being in the last few years of high school, I have to plan what to do afterwards. Originally, even a few weeks ago, my plan was to go into computer science/programming. Now, I've had second thoughts about that. Recently, my age-old passion in weather came back, and I've decided I will apply to an atmospheric science program in my area in Grade 12, along with computer science applications if I don't get accepted. :D

Maybe I'll actually know things about meteorology! :lol:

Re: I might go into meteorology/atmospheric science

Posted: Mon Mar 05, 2018 5:21 am
by Bizzles
Go for it!

I went the CompSci route and every time I have a crappy day I always tell myself, "I should have been a weather man..."

Re: I might go into meteorology/atmospheric science

Posted: Mon Mar 05, 2018 9:46 am
by wxman57
It's an old saying, but it's true - "If you're doing something you love then you'll never work a day in your life." I'd say that you should go with your passion, with a few caveats to consider:

1. Meteorology is generally a 24/7/364 occupation. Both private companies (like mine) and the NWS are staffed 24/7/365. As a meteorologist, you will most likely work rotating shifts that cover weekends and many holidays (at least for the first 10 years or so). I don't think that computer science is a 24/7/365 occupation.

2. A meteorology major is very math-intensive. Four semesters of Calculus, differential equations, partial differential equations, etc. Many drop out because of the math, so be prepared to up your math game.

3. Being a professional meteorologist, you'll have access to all sorts of cool tools for looking at the weather. ;-)

4. Be prepared to live wherever the job lies. You may not get to choose where you live. Meteorology jobs are generally only in major cities

I would suggest talking with local meteorologists to get a feel for what we do. Visit the nearest NWS office and see what they do. If there's a private consulting firm near you, ask if you can stop by to visit. Contact the local TV meteorologist and have a talk with him/her about the job.

There are quite a few specialty areas to consider:

1. Tropical Meteorologist - Very few options outside of the NHC, for which you may need a doctorate degree. Only a few private companies may have a tropical specialist. (24/7/365)

2. Marine Meteorologist - Forecast wind and seas for offshore operators (oil platforms, ships). (24/7/365)

3. Industrial Meteorologist - Provide daily forecasts and severe weather alerts for inland clients. (24/7/365)

4. Energy Trading Meteorologist - You provide medium to long-range forecasts for those in the energy trading field. Employed by some oil companies and utilities. Generally VERY early work hours. If you like getting up at 3am each day then this is the job for you!

5. TV Meteorologist - I think you know this one. Know that right out of school you'll be in a low-paying smaller market working weekends, evenings, and holidays. Not very much job security with this job. New management comes in and you may be out the door.

6. NWS Meteorologist - Issue daily forecasts and weather alerts for the office's area of concern. Good job security with the government, but little flexibility or variety of work. (24/7/365)

7. Aviation Meteorologist - This could be for a private company or for an airline. Basically, you provide short-term terminal forecasts for many airports. Occasional pilot briefings may be required. (24/7/365)

8. Company Meteorologist - Some companies hire meteorologists to monitor weather that may affect their assets. Companies like Utilities, oil companies, cruise lines, major manufacturers. These jobs are very few and far-between. You would probably have to know someone and have lots of experience to land such a job.

Those are just some of the types of meteorologists that come to mind. I started out as a marine meteorologist in 1980, became an aviation meteorologist in 1984 (briefed NASA astronauts flying out of Ellington Field in Houston), Managed a group of marine and industrial meteorologists in 1998 and shortly thereafter was in charge of our tropical team.

Oh, and be careful what you say when talking about where you'd like to work. All during college I kept saying that I wanted to work "down south". I was afraid of getting a job offer up in Minnesota where I would likely have frozen to death. Oh yeah, my first job was down south all right - southern tip of South America on an offshore oil platform providing weather forecasts for Shell. That was too far south! :lol:

Re: I might go into meteorology/atmospheric science

Posted: Tue Mar 06, 2018 8:53 pm
by Digital-TC-Chaser
@1900hurricane when you finish your degree there maybe a job waiting for u. :cold:

:darrow: Amundsen-Scott South Pole Station : :cheesy: