Best schools for studying meterology:-)

General Discussions: ASK John: Best schools for studying meterology:-)

By sledneck on Sunday, March 02, 2008 - 11:39 pm: Edit Post

Hi John, my son is getting to the age that we need to start figuring out exactly where he will go to college and he is very interested in becoming a meterologist. Hence my asking for some advice from my favorite meterologist. I would appreciate any info you could share as to what he should start preparing for. Thanks, Gene

By average_joe on Monday, March 03, 2008 - 10:14 pm: Edit Post

Gene, I guess you realize that John is taking his annual trip to Togwotee to do some serious sledding. That means he will not be available to answer your question for about a week at least.

In the meantime, may I suggest visiting the website of Jeff Haby. He offers a lot of information regarding weather prediction education and qualification.

Another website that you may want to visit is that of Keith C. Heidorn, PhD. It's not so much education, but he has published several articles including one of my favorites, Eighteen Hundred and Froze To Death.

There is also an opportunity to learn from several choice meteorologists at the upcoming 26th annual Fermilab/WGN-TV Tornado and Severe Weather seminars. That would be a long road trip for you however.

Best of luck to you and your son, Joe

By sledneck on Monday, March 03, 2008 - 10:41 pm: Edit Post

Thanks Joe, and yes after I typed it I remembered John was away having fun out west. But figured he'd get to it sooner or later. That being said thanks for your input and the links. My son is very interested in the weather and has expressed a great interest in becoming a meteorologist. He is just 13 right now but, now is the time to start planning and get a good idea of what schooling he will need and where would be the top places to go. Thanks again, Gene

By admin on Monday, March 10, 2008 - 11:25 am: Edit Post


It has been 18 years since I was in school for meteorology, so my knowledge is a bit dated. With that said, the three best in the Midwest back then were (in no particular order) Penn State, University of Wisconsin-Madison and Purdue. Penn State seemed to lean more towards preparing someone for the private and/or broadcasting route, while Wisconsin seemed to be more towards the computer end of things and Purdue was more towards research. Of course there is University of Oklahoma for severe weather and Florida State for Tropical.

I think a high school counselor should have a good idea of the best schools for meteorology or at least be able to give you some names and then you can do some research on your own.

My best advice for your son would be to become as good at math/science as he can, because that is what it is all about! If he does not like math and physics, then he might want to rethink his career choice or get ready to bite the bullet and gruel it out for 4 years!


By sledneck on Monday, March 10, 2008 - 06:46 pm: Edit Post

Thanks John, hope you had a great time out west. I can only dream about going out there someday. Am looking forward to your journal with the pics. Thanks again, Gene.

By snowfan470 on Wednesday, March 12, 2008 - 03:11 am: Edit Post

Well, since I had to choose a school for meteorology about a year to 2 years ago... I could give some input. John did make a list of some good schools for meteorology...but I'd really add Iowa State to that list. And I'm not saying that just b/c I go here...but Iowa State has a very strong meteorology program. The program is actually ranked 3rd behind Cornell and MIT. Penn State is 4th and i know Wisconsin and Purdue are also on the list for top 10 ten schools for meteorology. ...Iowa State's meteorology program is very well developed and at the same time it doesn't have the 500+ ppl in the program like Penn State does. it has around 100...which makes it better b/c class sizes are smaller...and u get to know the professors very well. 2nd...Iowa State is very strong In both Math, physics...its a major engineering and Sciences school. And as John said...he better like physics and math...b/c believe me...the math and physics I am taking right now is TOUGH. It is well worth it tho! But yes... when i was choosing schools for meteo...I chose between Iowa state...Oklahoma... and Penn State... best 3 schools and not nearly as hard to get into as Cornell or MIT.

By sledneck on Thursday, March 13, 2008 - 10:36 pm: Edit Post

Thanks snowfan470, i appreciate the info. He has been pulling straight in math for a few years. There was time when that was not the case, but I told him if he didn't apply himself he would not get to ride the snowmobiles. He also does very well in science and seems as if he really enjoys both. Thanks again guys, Gene.

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