Degrees: Bachelor of Science in Meteorology, Bachelor of Arts in Meteorology
Overview: Meteorology is more than just the study of weather; it includes all the characteristics, structure and processes of the atmosphere. Basic principles of physics and chemistry are applied to discover what makes our atmosphere work. Mathematical equations and techniques are used to predict weather based on present conditions.
Recently, meteorology has become increasingly vital to humankind's concerns. Ozone depletion and global warming have been identified as threats to our existence on earth. Meteorologists are on the front lines of the battle to observe and model these phenomena.
Curriculum: The Meteorology curriculum emphasizes both theory and practical application in fundamental and innovative aspects of the atmospheric sciences. Since class sizes are relatively small, an effective relationship develops between the student and the instructor. This personalized teaching mode stimulates academic interest and professional dedication among students. This is further strengthened by the Jesuit tradition of education.
The two degree options reflect a difference in career ambitions. The Bachelor of Arts program emphasizes the integration of studies in meteorology with other disciplines, such as communication and computer sciences. The Bachelor of Science program places more emphasis on professional recognition, admission to graduate schools, and employment with the National Weather Service. Most of our students pursue this degree. The American Meteorological Society readily accepts B.S. degree holders as members.
Unique Features of Our Program
Students in the Meteorology program at Saint Louis University can take advantage of a unique opportunity, in that the National Weather Service (NWS) Forecast Office is located fairly close to the University. Classes take field trips to the office to see the Doppler radar imagery of storms.
There are four commercial TV stations in the St. Louis area that regularly feature weather reports. Internships are also available with these stations. You can earn six hours of credit toward your degree through an internship, which is usually nonpaying.
Internship opportunities also exist through the NASA DEVELOP program, which traditionally offers student internships at NASA centers. However, SLU is the only university location where students have the opportunity to participate in the NASA DEVELOP internship program during the fall, spring, or summer semesters while residing at the University. The SLU DEVELOP team works within the framework of the Center for Environmental Sciences on campus. Research projects have focused on relating NASA Earth Observations to topics such as monitoring agricultural soil moisture and improving forecasts of high-impact non-convective wind events. An overview of recent projects including technical papers and a student produced video can be viewed from the Center for Environmental Sciences web page. More information on the NASA DEVELOP program can be obtained at http://develop.larc.nasa.gov/
In addition, the University is a charter member of the University Corporation for Atmospheric Research, which operates the National Center for Atmospheric Research. Undergraduate students can visit the UCAR campus during the summer.