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stormguy80

Reconsider majoring in meteorology!

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No met program really has a forecasting class. I'm just amazed Kean doesn't require chem or calc III. How did you understand the partial derivations required to derive the met equations?

I can't speak for other schools, but it was required at Oswego that you participated in the local forecasting game while in Synoptic 1 and 2...and one of the requirements of synoptic 2 lab was to write forecast discussions and give forecast briefings.

Also, while an elective, there was a broadcast meteorology and advanced forecasting course offered by Dave Aichorn, the chief met at WSYR at the time.

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No met program really has a forecasting class. I'm just amazed Kean doesn't require chem or calc III. How did you understand the partial derivations required to derive the met equations?

I believe Rutgers and Millersville offers forecasting classes. Partial derivations was mixed into the beginning of Thermodynamics.

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I can't speak for other schools, but it was required at Oswego that you participated in the local forecasting game while in Synoptic 1 and 2...and one of the requirements of synoptic 2 lab was to write forecast discussions and give forecast briefings.

Also, while an elective, there was a broadcast meteorology and advanced forecasting course offered by Dave Aichorn, the chief met at WSYR at the time.

In my senior year Kean participated in the WxChallenge, and we also had a broadcast met class that was created by Dr. Paul Croft(the Mt. Holly guys know him well).

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I can't speak for other schools, but it was required at Oswego that you participated in the local forecasting game while in Synoptic 1 and 2...and one of the requirements of synoptic 2 lab was to write forecast discussions and give forecast briefings.

Also, while an elective, there was a broadcast meteorology and advanced forecasting course offered by Dave Aichorn, the chief met at WSYR at the time.

Yeah there were the forecasting contests, but there was never no class that taught pure weather forecasting. Synoptics came close and gave you the basics of what you need to forecast without the models.

Forecasting is more of an art than a science anyway...and folks will have their own subjective way of perceiving data. Much of forecasting is learned through experience. I think the university programs realize this and that's why they concentrate on the science end of meteorology.

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In my senior year Kean participated in the WxChallenge, and we also had a broadcast met class that was created by Dr. Paul Croft(the Mt. Holly guys know him well).

WxChallenge (The PSU National Forecast Game originally) was recommended, but not required.

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I believe Rutgers and Millersville offers forecasting classes. Partial derivations was mixed into the beginning of Thermodynamics.

So you learned the calc while learning thermo?

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In my senior year Kean participated in the WxChallenge, and we also had a broadcast met class that was created by Dr. Paul Croft(the Mt. Holly guys know him well).

Dr Croft has really advanced the broadcast leg of that program.

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I believe Rutgers and Millersville offers forecasting classes. Partial derivations was mixed into the beginning of Thermodynamics.

When I was at Millersville there wasn't a forecasting class (don't see one listed in the couse list). I don't forecast for a living now, but I was involved with the campus weather service for 8 semesters. It involved map discussions and short and medium range forecasting for 3 shifts each day.

we also gained a little forecasting experience through our meso class

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Yeah there were the forecasting contests, but there was never no class that taught pure weather forecasting. Synoptics came close and gave you the basics of what you need to forecast without the models.

Forecasting is more of an art than a science anyway...and folks will have their own subjective way of perceiving data. Much of forecasting is learned through experience. I think the university programs realize this and that's why they concentrate on the science end of meteorology.

This. Synoptic was the closest to a forecasting class.

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I recently graduated from Florida State and we had all the normal reqs: Chemistry, Physics 1 and 2 as well as Atmo. Physics, Dynamics, Synoptic as well as a statistics/programming class combined. Calc 1 thru 3 were required, as was Diffy Q, I took partial differential equations because I was thinking of majoring in math, but that class kicked my butt (got a B but it was hard earned and with a lot of help). They also had a weather casting class that I took (which is how I got to be where I am now). Current WX Discussion was essentially our forecasting class because we had to give a 45 minute discussion 3 times in a semester just about the current weather and why we are forecasting the way we are. It helped the TA we had was incredibly knowledgable and I was able to learn a lot. I find it hard to believe you can get by in a Meteorology major without Calc 3 (how are you going to know how to do Q-Vectors? haha!) Overall, the major was difficult, but rewarding.

Also, meteorology HAS to be your life.... If you want to work in a meteorology field you have to LOVE it... not like it, but LOVE it! I get ragged on by my girlfriend that I check the weather out more than her (which is true if there is some severe wx or wintry wx events in the SE), but she understands. You have to stay on top of it all, including the latest research because this field is still 'relatively' new compared to the other major sciences. Also, the weather changes from day to day and model run to model run, and if you miss a few you can never make a really know where the models have trended (unless of course you want to look at the hundreds of posts about it on here ;) ) But if you love it and this is what you want to do, then find internships, get to know people, talk with professors (because they know a TON of people usually), and just never give up. I was lucky and found a broadcasting job in 6 months, but stick with it and you won't regret it!

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So you learned the calc while learning thermo?

Yep-the first few weeks were learning some Calc and Skew-Ts. We had a great professor. :thumbsup:

Dr Croft has really advanced the broadcast leg of that program.

When I was at Millersville there wasn't a forecasting class (don't see one listed in the couse list). I don't forecast for a living now, but I was involved with the campus weather service for 8 semesters. It involved map discussions and short and medium range forecasting for 3 shifts each day.

we also gained a little forecasting experience through our meso class

I was lucky enough to be one of the few "pioneers" of the Keancast-we started off as a weekly weather show, but we were able to score some old WSI computers from News 12 to actually help us make professional graphics and look really legit. There were also daily radio forecasts played across campus and it did gain popularity rather quickly.

This. Synoptic was the closest to a forecasting class.

It really was Greg, but I don't think many people know that we had a very "old school" professor-he hated computers and we had two labs a week so the one lab we'd analyze maps from March 3, 1963 and then the other lab was taught by another met professor where we broke off into teams and rotated throughout the semester to give a daily weather briefing(Forky loved those days :lol:)

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I've had 2.5 different meteorology jobs since graduating from college in 2007... the half being grad school which sort of really isn't a job. With each job, I've come into a better work place environment with better benefits and pay. It certainly isn't the end of the world like the OP is trying to present it.

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haha..I never said it was the end of the world! I pretty much said what many others have said.. you have to really love it - not just "like it" like I suspect many do which is the reason why the numbers of met students have skyrocketed. Many of them would reconsider if they new the truth and judging by some of the responses, some have.

I've had 2.5 different meteorology jobs since graduating from college in 2007... the half being grad school which sort of really isn't a job. With each job, I've come into a better work place environment with better benefits and pay. It certainly isn't the end of the world like the OP is trying to present it.

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Yep-the first few weeks were learning some Calc and Skew-Ts. We had a great professor. :thumbsup:

I was lucky enough to be one of the few "pioneers" of the Keancast-we started off as a weekly weather show, but we were able to score some old WSI computers from News 12 to actually help us make professional graphics and look really legit. There were also daily radio forecasts played across campus and it did gain popularity rather quickly.

It really was Greg, but I don't think many people know that we had a very "old school" professor-he hated computers and we had two labs a week so the one lab we'd analyze maps from March 3, 1963 and then the other lab was taught by another met professor where we broke off into teams and rotated throughout the semester to give a daily weather briefing(Forky loved those days :lol:)

LOL He still thinks the NGM is running somewhere, and refers to it as the workhorse model.

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So in that case, does Kean's meteorology program meet the federal meteorological requirements, as well as the AMS defined requirements?

Yes. I forgot to mention that we all had to take 2 CPS classes too!

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Interesting thread. This thread will probably be responsible for me getting my M.S. in meteorology. whistle.gif

Question for NWS/NOAA employees, what route did you take to get your job? I know it's incredibly difficult to get a government job. But what things can you do increase your odds or to make your resume better?

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Wow. This sounds like my field. I am a year and a half from my PhD in history. We have been in a depressed state since the early 1990's. It will not get better for a long time. With universities cutting back, boy oh boy. If it were not for my Master of Library Science, man I would be in adjunct heck. I was seriously considering double majoring in history and meteorology in the mid 1980's, but math got the better of me. Just my two cents.

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Interesting thread. This thread will probably be responsible for me getting my M.S. in meteorology. whistle.gif

Question for NWS/NOAA employees, what route did you take to get your job? I know it's incredibly difficult to get a government job. But what things can you do increase your odds or to make your resume better?

forget school and join the air force

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During the spring semester of my freshman year (mid 90s), one of our professors (who at one point was the director of the school of meteorology) told us point blank in Intro to Professional Meteorology that "you probably will not find a job in meteorology." He suggested that we make sure that meteorology is what we really want to do (good with any major) and that it would be a difficult road if we continue. I knew from the time that I was very young that I wanted to be a meteorologist so I didn't flinch. However, at the same time I never really developed a plan about where I wanted my career to go. After earning my B.S. with decent grades and a minor in mathematics, I took the first job I could find since I was getting married. I worked outside of meteorology for about 9 months then finally landed an entry level job at a private firm in Houston. I wasn't looking the whole time so it really didn't take that long to find this job (2001). This job started at about 27K which is pretty good by industry standards and Houston isn't expensive really. I didn't like the area though (Houston = too big for me at the time) so I moved to Oklahoma City to work for one of the proverbial sweatshops. The pay and hours were poor but I was forecasting the weather and I was happy with my location. I will warn that the raises were poor (5% first year, 0% 2nd year) so even as a supervisor the pay was right around 22K (for straight overnight shifts).

After ~1 1/2 years in the private sector I had earned my stripes enough to get into the NWS. The timing was perfect I'm sure because, like everyone has said, the jobs are uber competitive. Since then, my career has reached heights that I never dreamed of. I know more about the science that I ever thought I would and I have much about difference computing systems. That said, I still work rotating shifts and likely will for several more years at a minimum. That is difficult but worth it in the end.

My advice is that no matter how much you THINK you know, there is someone better out there. It has been said numerous times that you need to separate yourself from the pack by going above and beyond the norm. That can mean several things depending on your aptitude. If you are a computer savvy person, I would go the way of learning GIS, Linux, GIS, Python, GIS, and/or Tcl/Java (did I mention GIS?). Others may want to wok on their leadership and speaking skills. Do some posters for NWA meetings while in college, volunteer for leadership positions (SCAMS e.g.) and work with scouts and such. I think the most important thing you can do is apply for a SCEP position for summer employment at one of the WFOs. This is BY FAR the easiest way to get into the organization. My final suggestion is to not limit yourself geographically to get in the door. If you have to go to Alaska, Nevada or North Dakota...DO IT! You can always move after you get in and gain some experience. I have moved 3 times already to move up the ladder and even though I never pictured myself in any of those locations ahead of time, I still enjoyed them all. There is far more to a resume than meteorology skills. In fact, met skills are only a very small piece of the puzzle. If anyone has any more specific questions I would be happy to answer them. Send me an email/PM and I'll get to them when I can.

I'll end this by saying that this career is NOT for everyone but if you work hard and are willing to sacrifice it can be very rewarding. You just have to be willing to bide your time and not expect instant results.

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During the spring semester of my freshman year (mid 90s), one of our professors (who at one point was the director of the school of meteorology) told us point blank in Intro to Professional Meteorology that "you probably will not find a job in meteorology." He suggested that we make sure that meteorology is what we really want to do (good with any major) and that it would be a difficult road if we continue. I knew from the time that I was very young that I wanted to be a meteorologist so I didn't flinch. However, at the same time I never really developed a plan about where I wanted my career to go. After earning my B.S. with decent grades and a minor in mathematics, I took the first job I could find since I was getting married. I worked outside of meteorology for about 9 months then finally landed an entry level job at a private firm in Houston. I wasn't looking the whole time so it really didn't take that long to find this job (2001). This job started at about 27K which is pretty good by industry standards and Houston isn't expensive really. I didn't like the area though (Houston = too big for me at the time) so I moved to Oklahoma City to work for one of the proverbial sweatshops. The pay and hours were poor but I was forecasting the weather and I was happy with my location. I will warn that the raises were poor (5% first year, 0% 2nd year) so even as a supervisor the pay was right around 22K (for straight overnight shifts).

After ~1 1/2 years in the private sector I had earned my stripes enough to get into the NWS. The timing was perfect I'm sure because, like everyone has said, the jobs are uber competitive. Since then, my career has reached heights that I never dreamed of. I know more about the science that I ever thought I would and I have much about difference computing systems. That said, I still work rotating shifts and likely will for several more years at a minimum. That is difficult but worth it in the end.

My advice is that no matter how much you THINK you know, there is someone better out there. It has been said numerous times that you need to separate yourself from the pack by going above and beyond the norm. That can mean several things depending on your aptitude. If you are a computer savvy person, I would go the way of learning GIS, Linux, GIS, Python, GIS, and/or Tcl/Java (did I mention GIS?). Others may want to wok on their leadership and speaking skills. Do some posters for NWA meetings while in college, volunteer for leadership positions (SCAMS e.g.) and work with scouts and such. I think the most important thing you can do is apply for a SCEP position for summer employment at one of the WFOs. This is BY FAR the easiest way to get into the organization. My final suggestion is to not limit yourself geographically to get in the door. If you have to go to Alaska, Nevada or North Dakota...DO IT! You can always move after you get in and gain some experience. I have moved 3 times already to move up the ladder and even though I never pictured myself in any of those locations ahead of time, I still enjoyed them all. There is far more to a resume than meteorology skills. In fact, met skills are only a very small piece of the puzzle. If anyone has any more specific questions I would be happy to answer them. Send me an email/PM and I'll get to them when I can.

I'll end this by saying that this career is NOT for everyone but if you work hard and are willing to sacrifice it can be very rewarding. You just have to be willing to bide your time and not expect instant results.

These are good points, but a lot has changed since then. Most notable is the change in the veterans preference as before they were awarded additional points, now they are given the job. If a vet is on the panel at grade 5-7-9, after this new ruling passed down by Obama, they get the job. In other words, they will block out all other candidates from even being considered. Right now, since the November 1 ruling, veterans are pretty much blocking out everyone. Even positions in Alaska are being blocked by veterans. God Bless the veterans, but I wish being a veteran was not a requirement to get a job.

Regarding SCEPS, that has become even more challenging, and apparently they moved all SCEP decision making to Maryland instead of allowing the regional headquarters to make the decisions. Word is SCEP applications have exploded and most who eventually get it have a way in already.

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These are good points, but a lot has changed since then. Most notable is the change in the veterans preference as before they were awarded additional points, now they are given the job. If a vet is on the panel at grade 5-7-9, after this new ruling passed down by Obama, they get the job. In other words, they will block out all other candidates from even being considered. Right now, since the November 1 ruling, veterans are pretty much blocking out everyone. Even positions in Alaska are being blocked by veterans. God Bless the veterans, but I being a veteran was not a requirement to get a job.

Regarding SCEPS, that has become even more challenging, and apparently they moved all SCEP decision making to Maryland instead of allowing the regional headquarters to make the decisions. Word is SCEP applications have exploded and most who eventually get it have a way in already.

See my posting regarding the vet status deal over in the meteorologist only section for the NWS thread...its likely this will be a short lived change for the reason I state and keep in mind, that is just 2 offices, odds are its occurred elsewhere as well...

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These are good points, but a lot has changed since then. Most notable is the change in the veterans preference as before they were awarded additional points, now they are given the job. If a vet is on the panel at grade 5-7-9, after this new ruling passed down by Obama, they get the job. In other words, they will block out all other candidates from even being considered. Right now, since the November 1 ruling, veterans are pretty much blocking out everyone. Even positions in Alaska are being blocked by veterans. God Bless the veterans, but I wish being a veteran was not a requirement to get a job.

Regarding SCEPS, that has become even more challenging, and apparently they moved all SCEP decision making to Maryland instead of allowing the regional headquarters to make the decisions. Word is SCEP applications have exploded and most who eventually get it have a way in already.

That wasn't true even 4 months ago. Unless he signed this legislation since then, they are generally automatically on the panel with veteran's preference, but they aren't guaranteed the job.

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That wasn't true even 4 months ago. Unless he signed this legislation since then, they are generally automatically on the panel with veteran's preference, but they aren't guaranteed the job.

Check the job thread in the Met only forum. But yeah, after talking to 4-5 MIC's and NOAA workforce management, veterans now get all jobs 5-7-9 and non-vets are completely blocked. I believe November 1 was the ruling change.

I can also confirm that after this ruling, I make far less panels, and the one interview I was lucky enough to get had the one veteran--who was on panel blocking everyone--eventually was hired at a different office...it was why we were eventually considered. The MIC said without him leaving he would have been given the job. This fits with what others have found as well. We discuss it more in the met only section.

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Check the job thread in the Met only forum. But yeah, after talking to 4-5 MIC's and NOAA workforce management, veterans now get all jobs 5-7-9 and non-vets are completely blocked. I believe November 1 was the ruling change.

I've never heard of this and I haven't seen it practiced in recent hirings. Do you have a link to this ruling? It should be public domain if it involves federal hiring practices.

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I've never heard of this and I haven't seen it practiced in recent hirings. Do you have a link to this ruling? It should be public domain if it involves federal hiring practices.

Its likely something is going on differently because numerous people in the met job thread with extensive experience, ie eyewall, osumetstud who had been getting referred almost automatically have not been referred to anything or only once in recent weeks.

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http://www.americanw...post__p__120232

This thread doesn't explain it all, but any changes likely would have been made in concert with this. I can say, after talking to hiring MIC's and NOAA workforce, they have actually said that any vet grade 5-7-9 blocks out non-vets and they mentioned the Nov 1 change. Perhaps there was something lost in translation, but it seems to match the recent trends in a number of us not making any panels. I was also told by NOAA workforce management that the hiring official for the opening can decide if they choose to pass on non-vets if they believe too many veterans are on panel.

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Its likely something is going on differently because numerous people in the met job thread with extensive experience, ie eyewall, osumetstud who had been getting referred almost automatically have not been referred to anything or only once in recent weeks.

Yeah I've read about their recent struggles in the met thread. I'm just curious about this ruling. What it's all about and where I can find it. I'm interested in reading it.

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