How Do I Become a Meteorologist

predict the weather

If weather fascinates you and you can't pull yourself away from TV broadcasts of hurricanes or lightning storms, you might want to ask yourself the question, "How do I become a meteorologist?"

What is Meteorology?

Meteorology is the science of the atmosphere, and it encompasses everything from understanding atmospheric phenomena to explaining and forecasting weather patterns based on current and future trends.

How Do I Become a Meteorologist?

Most meteorologists have a keen understanding of math and science, as well as the interrelations between different branches of science-how they work together to affect the weather. At the very minimum, meteorologists are require to obtain a Bachelor's degree within the field, but many pursue advanced training and education in order to obtain a specialization.

Before College

If you've known forever that meteorology is in your future, put yourself on the right track by signing up for as many math and science classes as you can. Physics, calculus, chemistry and biology will all help you as your pursue your advanced degrees.

When you start thinking about college, look for schools that offer degrees in atmospheric, hydrologic and oceanic sciences. While this list doesn't encompass every program out there, some of the schools that offer these degrees include:

  • Arizona State University
  • Ball State University
  • Boise State University
  • Central Michigan University
  • Colorado State University
  • Columbia University
  • Cornell University
  • Drexel University
  • Florida State University
  • Georgia Institute of Technology
  • Harvard University
  • Hawaii Pacific University
  • Indiana University
  • Iowa State University
  • Jackson State University
  • John Hopkins University
  • Louisiana State University
  • Michigan State University
  • Mississippi State University
  • MIT
  • North Carolina State University
  • Ohio State University
  • Oregon State University
  • Pennsylvania State University
  • Princeton University
  • Purdue University
  • Rice University
  • Rutgers University
  • Stanford University
  • Texas A&M University
  • Texas Tech University
  • University of Connecticut
  • University of Delaware
  • University of Kansas
  • University of Maryland
  • University of Minnesota
  • University of Nebraska-Lincoln
  • University of Oklahoma
  • University of Texas-Austin
  • Washington State University
  • Yale University

During College

In addition to your meteorology or atmospheric sciences degree coursework, consider minoring or double-majoring in a second scientific field. This can set you up to pursue a Master's degree down the line if you choose to. Also, use your time well. Get good grades. Join student meteorology or atmospheric science organizations. See if you can intern with a local meteorologist. The more experience and knowledge you can develop during college, the better shot you'll have at landing a job after college.

After College

Once you have your degree in hand, you'll be ready to hit the pavement to find your first meteorologist job. The trick is knowing where to look. The following types of organizations and companies use meteorologists to help predict weather patterns and trends:

  • National Weather Service/Public Forecasting
  • TV Broadcasting Agencies
  • Weather Central
  • AccuWeather
  • WSI Corporation
  • Northwest Weather Net
  • Air Quality Agencies
  • Aerospace Companies
  • Agricultural Industry
  • Military Branches

Make Yourself Stand Out

In addition to degrees, the American Meteorological Society also offers certification programs to identify meteorologists who have gone the extra mile to stand out within the field. These certifications include:

  • Certified Broadcast Meteorologist
  • Seal of Approval
  • Certified Consulting Meteorologist

Check out the American Meteorological Society website in order to learn how to become certified post-graduation.

Prepare for Success in Metrology

To answer the question, "How do I become a meteorologist?" the answer is, "With hard work and dedication." But, by putting your nose to the grindstone and working hard, you'll have your dream career before you know it.

How Do I Become a Meteorologist