A huge opportunity

An updated Weather Analysis and Visualization Lab provides additional hands-on learning experiences for meteorology students.

a student in front of a green screen in a weather lab

Nov. 9, 202

When the University of Missouri announced funding opportunities last year to enhance teaching and learning across campus, Eric Aldrich jumped at the chance, submitting a proposal to upgrade one of the School of Natural Resources’ meteorology laboratories.

Aldrich, an assistant teaching professor of atmospheric science, secured $100,000 – and immediately used the funds to update the Weather Analysis and Visualization (WAV) Lab in the Anheuser-Busch Natural Resources Building.

“This funding has provided a huge opportunity for our meteorology students,” Aldrich said. “The lab is now equipped with state-of-the-art technology that is going to help our students gain valuable hands-on experience and prepare them to jump right into a weather-related career.”

While the WAV Lab is set up to give students the opportunity to practice and perfect their forecasting, broadcasting and modeling skills, the goal is to have students develop and publish daily forecasts for faculty, staff and students throughout campus. The intention is to have those forecasts broadcasted on the various monitors in buildings throughout campus.

Andrew Labit, a junior environmental sciences major, is one of the students who is already taking advantage of the WAV Lab. Labit began his collegiate career at MU with a desire to share timely weather forecasts with his fellow Tigers. Dubbed the Mizzou Weatherman, Labit sent weekly updates to nearly 800 students during his first two years at MU through a group text messaging app.

Now, Labit and several of his peers will share daily mid-Missouri weather forecasts with the MU student body through the new lab.

“This lab is really a dream come true,” Labit said. “It’s an incredible opportunity for us to work on each part of a weather broadcast, from developing our forecast to creating graphics and standing in front of the green screen to deliver the news. I always wanted to be the Mizzou weatherman, and the fact that I have the opportunity to be one is really something special. This is an incredible opportunity.”

Read more from the College of Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources

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