Careers in Meteorology. What is a Meteorologist?. AMS: A person with specialized education, using scientific principles to explain, understand, observe or forecast the Earth’s atmospheric phenomena and/or how the atmosphere affects the Earth and life on the planet.
The 2002 “Jobs Rated Almanac” ranks the meteorologist 7th out of 250 jobs evaluated by six criteria:
Involved in air-pollution control, agriculture, forestry, transportation by sea and air, and climate trends.
Study tree rings, lake and ocean sediment and ice boreholes in an effort to understand climate variations.
Deal with the make-up of the atmosphere and the myriad of chemicals that are being released into it, man-made as well as natural emissions from microorganisms, trees and geological processes.
Studythe mathematics and theory of issues related to radar, radio wave and optical propagation, spectroscopy, etc.
Continuously strive to improve accuracy of forecasts in order to limit flight delays and aviation accidents due to wind and ice.
Provide information with which commercial and recreational mariners can make decisions about routes or even whether to
stay in port on a given day. They also monitor the seas for signs of tsunamis.
Monitor highway and railway weather conditions. Municipalities can make more informed decisions regarding staffing for snow removal and railways can take measures to guard against wind and snow drift problems.
Give forecasts which are helpful to farmers trying to determine: the best days to plant, fertilize or harvest; whether or not to take measures to protect their crops from freezes; efficient irrigation schedules.
Provide businesses options to protect their goods and services from disruptions or to plan in advance to fill needs of customers. For example retailers may decide to order extra product or hire more staff or electric companies might need to be ready to generate at a higher capacity.
Supply weather forecasts which can increase a trader's odds of predicting the profitability of consumer goods. An observant trader can predict investment windfalls or circumvent catastrophic losses.
Work with structural engineers to develop buildings and bridges that will withstand the forces of wind. But that’s not all. There is also work to be done in determination of pollution dispersion and efficient building ventilation.
Collect and analyze data that can be used in investigations for insurance claims and criminal trials.
Integrate meteorological data with fire hazard predictions and warnings and also management of existing fires.
Are an integral part of the emergency response planning that communities worldwide depend on when It comes to making decisions on whether to leave or stay when severe weather threatens. An important part of this program is the establishment of a communication system that is effective and reliable so that people will trust enough to leave when that recommendation is made. Federal, state and local agencies work together to notify communities of possible dangers and to organize timely evacuations.
You should seek formal and up-to-date advice on what courses to take from your official departmental advisor