197A Meteorology Courses at St. Philip’s College, San Antonio, TX. A New Spectrum of Opportunities for Community College Students

Monday, 11 January 2016
Carmen Nava-Fischer, St. Philip's College, San Antonio, TX, San Antonio, TX

St. Philip's College (SPC) founded in 1898 is a Historical Black College and a Hispanic Serving Institution whose mission is to empower our diverse student population through education. SPC is at the center of the emerging scientific community in San Antonio, TX. It is a two year college with strong academic and technical arenas of study with significant inputs from local universities and user communities. For years the strength of the SPC Natural Sciences Department has been in their course offerings that are directly linked to the Allied Health programs. Today SPC is prepared to engage students in Earth Sciences, specifically in Meteorology and Oceanography, by implementing the American Meteorological Society courses. The efforts SPC has made for creating opportunities for Meteorology and Oceanography include: • Renovation of facilities and purchasing of equipment to create the Center of Excellence in Sciences, which include three labs equipped for the study of meteorology, oceanography, and geology; the meteorology lab has a weather in a tank and a weather station. • Hiring of a full time tenured instructor with a specialty in Earth Sciences who has attended the implementation courses of Oceanography and Meteorology offered by the AMS in the Diversity Project. • Creation of programs where the courses of Meteorology, Oceanography and Earth Sciences are offered. The Center is home for new degree programs including an Associate of Applied Science in Power Generation and Alternative Energy and an Associate of Science in Earth Science and Natural Energy Resources. • Transfer agreements exist with the University of the Incarnate Word (UIW) in San Antonio, TX. UIW has a program in Meteorology and Broadcast Meteorology. Specifically, the courses of Meteorology and Oceanography offered at SPC are transferable to this university and serve as a base for students interested in different fields of sciences such as engineering, geology, oceanography, which in turn diversifies our science student population. • Internships exist with local Earth Science businesses such as geological prospection for natural resources, etc., with the possibility of SPC students to be hired. • Strategies for recruiting students in summer programs for middle and high school students, which include the field of study of Meteorology. Future strategies include a St. Philip's College open house and advertising for recruiting students, creating a program for middle and high school teachers to be immersed into the Natural Sciences realm. This experience will give them a better understanding and fascination for Meteorology, which will be transmitted to their students encouraging them to pursue the amazing world of Earth Sciences. It is necessary to educate professionals that will advise our society of the meteorological changes produced by global warming. These professionals need to understand the sources of these changes through the study of Meteorology along with the allied sciences of Oceanography and Earth Sciences.
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