Meteorology, M.S.

Meteorology, M.S.

Get a Master's in Meteorology

Meteorology MSWith a master's in meteorology from Florida Tech, students develop extensive knowledge in many areas of Earth science including weather forecasting, climatology, atmospheric dynamics, storms and hurricanes, atmospheric physics and global climate change. Graduate students with a master's in meteorology become experts in math and physics, gaining in-depth exposure to other science disciplines including oceanography, ocean engineering, environmental science, climate science and Earth remote sensing.

Because Florida Tech is located at the boundary between tropical and subtropical weather patterns in Florida, and Florida is the lightning capital of the world, students gain unique fieldwork experience at Patrick Air Force Base and Kennedy Space Center with some of the most respected weather experts in the world. For students that want to become a broadcast meteorologist, world weather expert, storm tracker or weather researcher, a master's in meteorology from Florida Tech provides expert training for these careers.

 

Why Pursue a Master's in Meteorology at Florida Tech?

Florida Tech's close-knit educational community provides graduate students with small class sizes, where professors mentor students for success. The faculty is a mix of environmental scientists, oceanographers, meteorologists and ocean engineers who are active in research. A personalized learning environment such as this allows students seeking a master's degree in meteorology the chance to work alongside professionals in the industry to develop real-world skills in vital weather-related research, making them more attractive candidates to employers. Graduate students participate in internships and can apply for one of the 10 graduate teaching assistantships offered each year.

Experienced Interdisciplinary Faculty

Professors in the master's in meteorology program include several atmospheric science experts who are members of the University Corporation for Atmospheric Research, American Meteorological Society, Florida Academy of Science and National Center for Atmospheric Research. The interdisciplinary program also includes mathematicians, physicists and engineers who collectively bring a wealth of knowledge to the classroom. Small class sizes provide an environment where professors mentor students and work one-on-one in study and field research.

Research Opportunities

Working towards a master's degree in meteorology, students embark on a variety of advanced research experiences that include the Research Recap – where students conduct research with marine meteorologists and oceanographers during mesoscale weather system research – and Collaborative Hurricane Research that gives students a chance to work with the 45th Weather Squadron at Patrick Air Force Base. Students engage in study of tropical cyclones including high wind and wave forecasting and evaluation of the National Hurricane Center's wind speed probability forecasts. Research allows students to investigate topics that most interest them and could include such other studies such as wind and wave nowcasting, gamma rays and lightning.

High Tech Facilities

To be considered among top meteorology colleges, a university needs high-tech facilities. Florida Tech delivers. Students have access to the National Weather Service site in Melbourne, Fla., as well as the 45th Weather Squadron at Patrick Air Force Base. Students seeking a master's degree in meteorology also have access to the Synoptic Meteorology Laboratory, Wind and Hurricane Impacts Research Laboratory (WHIRL), Kennedy Space Center, and facilities at private companies such as Harris and ENSCO. On campus, Florida Tech also provides state-of-the-art facilities and laboratories in the F.W. Olin Engineering Complex and F.W. Olin Life Sciences Building.

Professional Organizations

The Florida Tech student chapter of the American Meteorological Society (FITSCAMS) actively participates with the Cape Canaveral AMS Chapter with Sigma Xi, and in the annual senior design showcase, which brings many potential employers to the university. Several students attend the annual AMS conference each year.

Perfect Location to Study Weather

The university's location is one of the reasons students choose Florida Tech for a master's degree in meteorology. Florida is on the boundary of tropical and subtropical weather patterns and is the lightning capital of the world. While many graduate students are working professionals in the area, other students come to Florida Tech for the opportunity to gain real-world experience with some of the most respected weather experts in the world.

Close to Career Opportunities

Graduates with a master's degree in meteorology have interdisciplinary training through oceanography, ocean engineering, environmental science, atmospheric science and earth remote sensing. Career path options include forecasting, weather data analysis, development of new weather data equipment and working alongside other professionals in need to weather information. Students who graduate with their master's in meteorology from Florida Tech have gone to work for employers such as NOAA National Weather Service, NASA and Executive Jet.

What Meteorology Research or Other Opportunities Can I Expect?

Participating in meteorology internships is one way students prepare for a career. Hands-on fieldwork working alongside professionals in the industry provides unique work-related experience that students can transfer to their career. Meteorology internships and research opportunities have been provided by:

  • Dynamac 
  • Boeing 
  • Epcot Cen Disney World's The Living Seas 
  • Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institute at Florida Atlantic University 
  • Army Corp of Engineers

In addition to meteorology internships, the department hires approximately 10 graduate teaching assistants each year, and many graduate research assistants. Endowed fellowships are available through the department to support graduate education.

Internships

Students working towards a master's in meteorology at Florida Tech also have an opportunity for one of the ten teaching assistantships or a variety of graduate research assistant positions.

Research Recap

Research is a vital part of every graduate program at Florida Tech. Students work alongside marine meteorologists and physical oceanographers during mesoscale weather system research aim to improve coastal forecasts of hazardous atmospheric and oceanic conditions including surface waves and rip currents.

Other popular research topics include:

  • Wind and wave nowcasting 
  • Gamma-rays 
  • Hurricanes and lightning research (involving access to largest X-ray array in the world for measuring lightning)

The Florida Tech student chapter of the American Meteorological Society (FITSCAMS) actively participates with the Cape Canaveral AMS Chapter with Sigma Xi, and in the annual senior design showcase, which brings many potential employers to the university. Several students attend the annual AMS conference each year.

Collaborative Hurricane Research

Meteorology internships and research at Florida Tech also includes working with the 45th Weather Squadron in tropical cyclone research. This involves students in high wind and wave forecasting and evaluation of the National Hurricane Center's wind speed probability forecasts.

Research Facilities

  • Synoptic Meteorology Laboratory – This lab includes computers optimized for weather data acquisition and analysis. 
  • Wind and Hurricane Impacts Research Laboratory (WHIRL) – The WHIRL facility is designed for study on the impacts of windstorms including hurricanes, tornadoes, thunderstorms and other related meteorological hazards. Students have access to a wind tunnel, wave tank, coastal processes lab, an environmental optics and remote sensing lab, and a fleet of 50 single and multiengine airplanes. 
  • Adjunct Facilities – Other facilities include the National Weather Service, Kennedy Space Center, the 45th USAF Weather Squadron and several private company facilities that support student research including Harris and ENSCO.

How Will a Master's Degree Benefit My Meteorology Career?

Since weather is everywhere, and climate affects everyone on Earth, a meteorology career can be found all over the world in a variety of different jobs. Developing forecasts, collecting and compiling data, assisting in the development of new weather data equipment or advising employers and clients on the risks or opportunities caused by weather and climate change are just some of the careers options for graduates. A meteorology career could also include:

  • Broadcasting weather reports via Internet, radio and television 
  • Observing weather to advise commanders of military missions around the world 
  • Forecasting for the travel industry 
  • Managing and stabilizing needs by power companies 
  • Advising safety agencies for weather-related emergency response 
  • Working with farmers and other agricultural concerns 
  • Providing information to city managers and other public agencies that interact with a host of organizations such as hospitals, stadiums, shopping malls, schools, etc. 
  • Producing weather maps and graphics 
  • Writing computer models and other programs that analyze and report weather data

Students who graduate with their master's in meteorology from Florida Tech have gone to work for employers such as NOAA National Weather Service, NASA and Executive Jet.

Career Outlook

The Occupational Outlook Handbook published by the United States Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics, provides detailed information about hundreds of occupations, including entry-level education, overall working environment and employment prospects.

The bureau states that opportunities for a meteorology career are projected to grow by 10 percent through 2022, as the need for meteorologists and atmospheric scientists in private industry increases. New computer models have improved forecast accuracy and given scientists the ability to provide specialized information to businesses. The global economic environment demands that business understand how weather is affecting operational concerns such as the flow of goods, shipping delays, international executive travel, and more.

Life, physical and social science occupations will also expand meteorology careers by 10 percent, according the Labor Bureau, as meteorologists work with other professionals in energy, transportation, agriculture and environmental organizations on such activities as planning new wind farms for electricity or how climate change effects water supply.

Check the handbook for information and the outlook for a meteorology career.

Career Options

Florida Tech graduates can find different options for a meteorology career including:

  • Meteorologist (Forensic, research) 
  • Weather Forecaster 
  • Climate Scientist 
  • Broadcast Meteorologist 
  • Environmental Engineer 
  • Environmental Scientist 
  • Earth Remote Sensing Scientist 
  • Air Quality Scientist 
  • Physicist 
  • Climate Change Analyst 
  • Oceanographic Engineer 
  • Postsecondary Teacher