Becoming a Tornado Chaser
Name: Andrea K.
My dream since I was a little girl was to become a
tornado chaser! I feel that they are the most fascinating things ever to
be seen! But there is one problem, every time I ask someone if they think
i should become a Tornado chaser, they either tell me that it is the most
stupidest idea they have ever heard or they joke about it. Even my dad
says it is a very stupid choice for a career but it is something that has
always been a dream of mine. It really hurts me when they say things
like that but it never makes me not want to become one. I do not have a
clue as to what to do about my family and friends. I am afraid that they
would get upset with me if I start to study up on it. Could you please
help me with this. I am so lost!
In high school, you will need to take as much math and science as
possible. English is important too. Another good course to take is
computer programming. If you can learn a little electronics, this can be
fun. Consider doing science contest work such as SSIP from NASA.
When you get to college, you will need to major in Meteorology. A strong
physics background will be necessary.
If you change your mind along the way, all of these courses can apply to
many other areas.
Read up on the TOTO project, and ask the science teachers in your school
for any contacts that might be made with meteorologists and any job
shadowing that you may wish to do.
Aside from having nerve, you must have a clear and deep understanding of
the phenomena and a good handle on how to do scientific research. It is
much hard work, but can be very rewarding.
---Nathan A. Unterman
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Update: June 2012