Meteorology Major, B.S.
Bachelor of Science
When you look at the sky do you see clouds or cumulonimbi? If it’s the latter, you can indulge your interest in atmospheric science with an MSU Denver major in Meteorology.
Meteorology is the science of weather, climate and the atmosphere and involves the study of physics, chemistry and math along with Meteorology courses, labs and field experiences.
In keeping with MSU Denver’s student-centered philosophy, MSU Denver’s Meteorology professors will ease you into your math and science studies, helping you to build math and science confidence and knowledge. An added bonus: Your Meteorology degree program gives you the added credential of a Mathematics minor.
Plus your studies of the atmosphere don’t stop in class. You will also have the chance to develop professional Meteorology skills by working in MSU Denver’s Meteorology Computer Laboratory, completing a senior research project, taking part in internships and engaging in fieldwork observing extreme weather or snow and avalanche conditions.
By combining academic and career-related skills, your Meteorology program will prepare you for Meteorology careers as well as for future graduate study.
Are you interested in Meteorology? Choose from the following programs:
Benefits of Earning Your Degree at MSU Denver
The Department of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences delivers the academic content you expect from a bachelor’s degree program while also bringing to the table everything that’s unique about MSU Denver’s people and our meteorology community.
MSU Denver is a full member of the University Corporation for Atmospheric Research, and our students have the advantage of the following opportunities:
• Enjoy attending classes on a vibrant and diverse downtown campus.
• Benefit from small classes and individual interaction with faculty.
• Learn from a professional, diverse faculty with real-world experience.
• Access real-time weather data and analysis software in our laboratories.
• Intern with various organizations, and jump-start a successful career.
• Join our active student chapter of the American Meteorological Society.
Career Opportunities for Our Graduates
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Occupational Handbook the job outlook for meteorologists is expected to grow 9 percent between 2014 and 2024, faster than the average. Here are some job titles you might qualify for:
- Atmospheric scientist
- Broadcast meteorologist
- Meteorology software developer
- Operational forecaster
- Research meteorologist
Hear from our students:
“I decided to become a meteorologist when I was nine. MSU Denver allowed me to get the degree to make my dream come true. Its proximity to NCAR allowed me to work as a student on meaningful research while I pursued my degree. I feel extremely fortunate!”
—Wendy Abshire, MSU Denver '85, senior project manager at UCAR
The MSU Denver Meteorology program conforms to the American Meteorological Society and National Weather Service recommendations for an undergraduate degree in Meteorology. MSU Denver is also a member of the University Corporation for Atmospheric Research.
MSU Denver’s Meteorology program was among the first in the country to upgrade its computer lab giving students access to the state-of-the-art software used at the National Weather Service.
Associate Professor Sam Ng teaches a fieldwork course called “Observations of Severe Weather” and is an expert on weather forecasting, winter weather, convective storms and Mesoscale meteorology.
Associate Professor Keah Schuenemann studies climate change communication, using student-generated content such as blogging in college courses and teaching science literacy. Her climate research includes the large-scale weather pattern climatology of Greenland and changing weather patterns due to a warming climate.
Professor Rich Wagner is a MSU Denver President’s Award-winner and has been deeply involved in MSU Denver life and in promoting Meteorology to students who lack access or are unfamiliar with opportunities in the field. He is active in the community promoting sustainability and authentic K-12 science education.
“The level of personal connection that the professors have with students at MSU Denver — not just with their students, but any student in the program, really — provides a personal level of guidance and assistance that you don’t often find at larger universities.”
Cyrena-Marie Arnold, MSU Denver ’05, is director of product services for Weather Analytics. She has also served as director of summit operations at Mount Washington Observatory, worked at the NASA contractor AIRDAT and for a Denver-based air-quality monitoring company.
Alumni at Work
MSU Denver Meteorology alumni are working at places such as the National Center for Atmospheric Research conducting research on airplane icing, working for the private sector on forecasting road conditions, informing people about weather as broadcasting meteorologists, repairing weather instruments around the globe and traveling to Antarctica to install instrumentation.
MSU Denver Meteorology grads are serving as:
- Director of education programs for the American Meteorological Society
- Forecaster for the Colorado Avalanche Information Center Forecasting
- Snow forecaster for Jackson Hole, Wyoming
- Forecaster for the National Weather Service
MSU Denver Meteorology graduates have pursued graduate degrees at the following schools:
- Mississippi State University
- Louis University
- Texas Tech University
- University of Colorado Boulder
- University of Illinois
- University of North Dakota
- San Jose State University
- University of Maine
Your Meteorology curriculum adheres to the American Meteorological Society and National Weather Service recommendations for bachelor degrees in Meteorology. Your degree program also includes a required minor in Mathematics.
These are just some of the Meteorology courses you will have the opportunity to take:
- Weather and Climate (includes lab)
- Weather Observing Systems
- Physical Meteorology
- Weather Analysis Techniques
- Air Pollution
- Hazardous Weather
- Radar and Satellite Meteorology
Facilities and Resources
The MSU Denver Meteorology Computer Laboratory is a state-of-the-art computer lab with a giant 11-monitor weather wall that displays the current weather and forecasts using the same software as the National Weather Service (software many schools do not yet have access to). Each student computer stations has a dual-monitor system for the viewing of multiple layers and variables at one time.
Located on Colorado’s high plains, the MSU Denver campus offers you the opportunity to observe the state’s extreme weather patterns first-hand. We are also located in close proximity to some of the largest concentrations of atmospheric scientists in the world at national labs such as the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), the National Weather Service (NWS), the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR), the Laboratory for Atmospheric and Space Physics (LASP) and the National Renewable Energy Lab (NREL). This gives you the opportunity to begin working with world-renowned professionals through internships, part-time jobs and summer experiences.
The Meteorology degree program at MSU Denver is part of the University’s overall accreditation with the Higher Learning Commission and conforms to the American Meteorological Society and National Weather Service recommendations for an undergraduate Meteorology degree.