UIW’s School of Mathematics, Science and Engineering offers a specialization in Meteorology through the Operational Meteorology program and Broadcast Meteorology program. We spoke with Dr. Gerald Mulvey about this area of study at UIW.

UIW: What program tracks are offered in this degree program?

Dr. Mulvey: This program offers a Bachelor of Science in Operational Meteorology and a Bachelor of Science in Broadcast Meteorology.

UIW: Can you explain what the meteorology program at UIW entails?

Dr. Mulvey: The Broadcast Meteorology program prepares students to learn about and interpret atmospheric phenomenon and meteorological data, gathered by surface and upper air stations, satellites, and radar to prepare reports and forecasts for public presentation. The Broadcast Meteorology program is taught jointly between the Meteorology and Communication Arts departments. UIW has dedicated state-of-the-art weather broadcasting facilities using Weather Central software for skill development. Professional broadcast meteorologists teach the on-air broadcast program. The UIW graduate will obtain the educational training to qualify for the American Meteorological Society examination for a Certified Broadcast Meteorologist after completing 5 years in the broadcast field.

The Operational Meteorology program provides students with a comprehensive education research into the dynamics of the Earth’s atmosphere, weather analysis, and weather forecasting. This science includes a study of the impact of air pollution on people and the environment, the threat of changing climate due to global warming, severe weather, and world climates. Capstone work is available in both field experimentation and meteorological analysis utilizing the fixed and deployable weather stations and nine Apple workstations in the Climate and Data Analysis Laboratory. The UIW graduate will obtain the educational training to qualify for the American Meteorological Society Certified Consulting Meteorologist examination after completing 5 years in industry.

UIW: What is the overall philosophy of this program?

Dr. Mulvey: The program’s philosophy is to help develop a student’s appreciation of the Earth’s atmosphere through education and understanding. Students in the program will learn to critically analyze and evaluate the interactions of the atmosphere with the oceans and biosphere, recognize the problems and issues of local and regional air pollution, the profound implications and long-term effects of global warming on the planet, the effects of severe weather and the long-term effects human impact on weather and climate. The program offers the student the knowledge and skills to investigate adverse human impact on weather and climate and recognize how to remediate or avoid these conditions to support the needs and requirements of all life on our planet. Both Operational Meteorology and Broadcast Meteorology are aimed at supportive learning of critical work place skills enabling students upon graduation to assume jobs in industry, civilian government or the military

The spirit of Christian service is promoted by providing the student the intellectual tools necessary for making sound scientific decisions and ethical judgments and thus become enlightened citizens in society. Experiences in research activities through course work, seminars, and internships also promote within each student self-realization and spiritual guidance acquired through independent work, volunteered endeavors, and cooperative learning.

UIW: What types of career opportunities are available for graduates of this program?

Dr. Mulvey: Meteorology is an interdisciplinary program that prepares students for entering a wide variety of professional careers as well as graduate programs in weather modeling and forecasting, air pollution studies, broadcast meteorology, hydrology, Geographic Information Systems (GIS) applications in meteorology, and education. Government, industry, and private research groups also provide entry-level positions for meteorologists. A student graduating from the Meteorology program may find employment with the private and public sectors as an applied or operational meteorologist. The military also provides opportunities with forecasting centers that include flight and airborne operations, ground support for the army, and naval meteorology. There are a number of private-sector companies that provide weather service to ocean shipping firms and port operators, electric and gas utilities, farmers, ranchers and highway departments. Employment with research laboratories includes studies in global climate change including remote sensing and GIS applications. A high-profile career in meteorology includes media weathercasting for television, radio and newspapers. Related careers in meteorology include marketing and sales of meteorological equipment made by companies involved in the design and manufacture of weather instruments. The geographical focus of jobs are in California, Texas, Colorado, Maryland and Massachusetts.

UIW: What type of person is best suited for this program?

Dr. Mulvey: Meteorology has career opportunities that range from fieldwork to observe, analysis work, forecasting and numerical modeling on the operational side and TV and radio weathercasting on the broadcast side.  In terms of the type of student best suited for these programs students selecting meteorology as a career should be interested in science and mathematics, numerical modeling and in forecasting what mother nature will do next.


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