89th American Meteorological Society Annual Meeting

Monday, 12 January 2009
Applying LEAD in NCAS Weather Camp
Hall 5 (Phoenix Convention Center)
Michael Mogil, How the Weatherworks, Naples, FL; and D. K. Bond, S. St. Gerard, E. Joseph, D. V. R. Morris, S. Yalda, T. Baltzer, and S. Marru
The NOAA/Howard University Center for Atmospheric Science (NCAS) has developed a summer enrichment experience for pre-college students from traditionally underrepresented groups. The NCAS Weather Camp (WC), which has been held for the past seven summers (2-3 weeks in July), targets students in grades 10-12 mostly from high schools across metropolitan Washington, DC. Weather Camp represents NCAS' effort at the pre-college level to generate interest and excitement about weather and climate among students from traditionally underrepresented groups, and provide these students with early exposure to career paths in the atmospheric sciences. Weather Camp activities and curriculum include: visitation of government and private sector facilities involved in the development and delivery of weather products, introduction to fundamental concepts of weather and climate, forecasting contest, and group oriented/“hands-on” projects on topics such as severe weather prediction, El Nino, the measurement and interpretation of state variables, etc. Tools from the Link Environments for Atmospheric Discovery (LEAD) project were integrated into the past four WCs to enable a much richer discovery-based exploration of weather and atmospheric phenomena. For example during WC 2008 LEAD tools were applied to facilitate the WC forecast contest. Students configured and produced their own simulated forecasts using the Weather Research and Forecasting Model (WRF) through the LEAD Portal. This paper gives an overview and assessment of WC, and integration of LEAD technology. Anecdotal evidence of the impact of this technology on WC students is discussed and some recommendations are suggested for more effective integration.

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