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B.S. Earth Sciences, Meteorology Emphasis


The UNC meteorology program has two goals: a strong foundation in the sciences preparing students for graduate school and providing the experience necessary to be ready to take a job in weather forecasting.

The science of meteorology seeks to understand the atmosphere and its phenomena by considering the forces that act on it, the processes that determine its behavior and the interaction between it and the earth beneath. This program provides a broad background in meteorology and stresses practical interpretation of weather data and the importance of meteorology to many aspects of human endeavor.

Graduates of the meteorology program will be prepared for entry-level positions as meteorologists with government agencies and private companies, as weather forecasters with the United States Air Force and as team members with firms concerned with environmental monitoring. Meteorology is also an excellent major for individuals planning careers in either civilian or military aviation. The program provides the background necessary for admission to graduate programs in the atmospheric sciences.

The course requirements assure that our graduates meet all of the requirements for certification with the American Meteorology Society (AMS) and the National Weather Association (NWA).

A comprehensive undergraduate meteorology program emphasizing:

  • Small class sizes for individualized instruction
  • Rigorous coursework blending theory with applications
  • Weather forecasting experience
  • Preparation for graduate school and the job market
  • Undergraduate research projects and conference presentations
  • Collaborations thoughout the CO Front Range and Northeastern Plains

Facilities & Resources:

  • Dedicated Classroom and Laboratory Space.
  • A Linux computer network, including a data server and 17 client PCs. The server receives live meteorological data, while PCs are configured with dual-boot Windows/Linux, Unidata software, the WRF model, and specialized meteorological software such as GRAnalyst.
  • Electronic weather wall with five large screen monitors for interactive weather briefings and classroom instruction, featuring a central 70" touchscreen.
  • An in-house sounding system, facilitating weather balloon launches for class demonstrations and research.
  • A dedicated disdrometer, which measures precipitation size, type, amount, and rate of fall.
  • Real time weather station and weather cam.
  • An Active Student Chapter of the American Meteorological Society.
  • A NWS cooperative observing weather station on campus.
  • UNC is a Member of the University Corporation for Atmospheric Research (UCAR).
  • Affiliations with CSU's nearby CHILL Radar and collaborations with the Center for Severe Weather Research using the Doppler on Wheels for educational deployments and outreach.
  • Easy access to the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) and NWS forecast offices in Boulder, CO and Cheyenne, WY.
  • Broadcast Internship relationships established with major Denver news stations.
  • On-campus broadcast experiences through the student-run television news program, "Bear News."

Degrees Offered:

Bachelor of Science in Earth and Atmospheric Sciences, Meteorology Emphasis

Master of Arts, Earth and Atmospheric Sciences

Meteorology Faculty:

Dr. Wendi Flynn, Associate Professor

  • Expertise: Weather Forecasting & Analysis, Physical Meteorology, Mesoscale Meteorology
  • Point of contact for: Student Chapter of the AMS, Student Service & Outreach; Cooperative Observer Weather Station, Campus Climatology, CoCoRaHS

Dr. David Lerach, Associate Professor

  • Expertise: Severe Storms & Tornadogenesis, Cloud Microphysics, Mesoscale Meteorology, Radar & Numerical Modeling Applications

Dr. Cindy Shellito, Professor

  • Expertise: Paleoclimatology, Climate Dynamics, Global Change, Dynamic Meteorology, Science Education