191 Teaching Climatology to Students in West Texas

Tuesday, 8 January 2013
Exhibit Hall 3 (Austin Convention Center)
Troy Lilly, Western Texas College, Snyder, TX

Western Texas College is a rural two year college located in the oil fields of Snyder, Texas. Snyder has a population of 10,793 and the county population is slightly under 16,000. The college starts its 42nd year in the fall of 2012 with an approximate enrollment of 2400 students. Of these, over 25% are minority students; mostly Hispanic since we are a Hispanic Serving Institution (HSI).

The college has strong representation in on campus, distance learning, dual credit, and prison courses. In 2011 we had the highest graduation rate of any community college in the state.

In the fall of 2007, the first Weather Studies course, using AMS material, was taught followed by the Ocean Studies course in the spring of 2009. Each course utilizes the AMS laboratory manual, text book and “near real time” activities.

In the spring of 2012, the instructor attended a climatology workshop in Washington, DC sponsored by the AMS. As a result, we will now offer Climatology as an online course in either spring or summer of 2013.

Since, Climatology is not yet approved by the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board to be taught at the community college level, permission to teach it will have to be secured first. This will likely take the entire fall semester and perhaps longer. As soon as approval is obtained, we will implement the course as an online offering along with Weather Studies and Ocean Studies.

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