AFROTC and Atmospheric Science

By Cadet Anthony Ponzi

Most people come to college with either a small idea of what major they want or absolutely no clue what they want to do, but if you talk to basically anybody in the Atmospheric Science program at OSU, you would find that most of us have known for a long time that we wanted to major in weather. It’s very true that the major is small, and it is most definitely filled with huge weather nerds, but it can be for anybody with an interest in how the Earth works!

The major is certainly not for everyone…it requires Physics 1250 and 1251, Chemistry 1210, and all the way up to Differential Equations. But if you are able to get through the tough GE’s, you’ll find that the classes become much smaller, more intimate, and a whole lot more interesting. So far, I have taken Basic Meteorology, which is an introduction class to the atmosphere and meteorology, Synoptic Meteorology Lab, which is the start of analyzing weather maps, and Boundary Layer Climatology. I have found all three classes to be interesting and fun, and I am super excited to continue taking more weather classes. For those worried about the size of OSU, the Atmospheric Science program and the Department of Geography as a whole can really make the campus feel smaller. It is a small major, and all of the staff, faculty, and advisors are extremely helpful and very knowledgeable. I have always felt welcomed and can’t wait to meet more people. If you have the time, the Meteorology Club is a great way to meet people in the major, go on cool field trips, and interact with professionals.

Now how does this all tie in to the Air Force? Well, as I was searching for colleges and deciding what I wanted to do with my life back in high school, I found out that the Air Force has one of the leading weather programs in the country, and later on, I found out that the Air Force is in need of Weather Specialists and Weather Officers. Then, I found out that Meteorology/Atmospheric Science is a tech major, and it all fell into place. One most likely doesn’t think about being a weatherman in the military, but it truly is an important aspect, particularly for pilots. For anyone with an interest in weather, I highly recommend checking out the Department of Geography’s website or getting in contact with someone in the major. And for those interested in the Air Force, know that you are going into a high tech, important, fascinating field that is extremely rewarding.