Chapter News
March 2009


Meeting date: 3/17/09


Meeting in Session: 9:04pm

Meeting Adjourned: 9:58pm

Presidents Report: Trip to White Lake meet in the parking lot at 1:30pm on Saturday!

Vice President’s Report:  Committees.

Committee reports:

Public relations: Send out relay for life sign up sheet. Wear our SCAMS shirts. We will buy water additives and sell them. West midland school is still sketchy.

Conferences: Iowa pays 10-15 dollars per person, money is not needed from the club. Conferences will be 30-50 $ with food costs total. Voted that all the geology money goes to Iowa conference.

Activities: Next Thursday meeting-movie night! Bring popcorn, etc. Let Nate know about future activities.

Jobs/internships: Nothing new.

Fundraising: Do campus surveys for money. We are looking into the Coldstone fundraiser.

Treasurer’s Report: Keep bringing those bottles! We had $11.10 this past time. We can bring them from home too! Shirts sale! Half off past shirts! The checking has $117.49 and the savings has $2906.86.

Secretary’s Report: Please make sure you sign the attendance sheet that is going around. Attendance is important to the club. If you miss more than two meetings (unexcused) you will have to repay your dues. Please e-mail SCAMS or Secretary if you are going to miss.

SGA Report: Survey for athletics will be coming to you by email. Take back the night is an organization on campus that is against crime against women and families. Seniors, don’t forget your cap and gown this week!

Webmaster: Website is still cool. It’s been paid for another year. May put Wx challenge on the forums/chasing forums.

OPEN FLOOR: Senior exit banquet-committee leader is Dave Hampton. $5.00 a ticket. Then we voted to allow $100.00 of SCAMS money to the Valparaiso Weather Conference. Finally, Road cleanup is April 25, 2009 and there is a picnic at Megan’s house afterwards. (President vs. Vice President kickball tradition).

Meeting date: 3/24/09


Meeting in Session: 9:07pm

Meeting Adjourned: 9:58pm

Presidents Report: Thanks to those who attended Relay for Life! Road clean up 25th April and picnic/kickball game.

Vice President’s Report:  Committees.

Committee reports:

Public relations: Tutoring signs in binder and we will put them up soon. Friday is good for school programs (next three weeks?)  Vowler elementary is possible in the fall. Thanks to those attending relay for life.

Conferences: Iowa pays 10-15 dollars per person, money is not needed from the club. Conferences will be 30-50 $ with food costs total. Voted that all the geology money goes to Iowa conference.

Activities: Next Thursday meeting-movie night! Bring popcorn, etc. Let Nate know about future activities. Woldt library! Picnic and road cleanup on the 25th of April!

Jobs/internships: Nothing new.

Fundraising: Do campus surveys for money. Looking into coldstone and Las Senioritas.

Treasurer’s Report: Pop cans this week were $16.90 and were donated to Relay for life.  Checking account is at $704.00. Savings account is at $2022.76

Secretary’s Report: Please make sure you sign the attendance sheet that is going around. Attendance is important to the club. If you miss more than two meetings (unexcused) you will have to repay your dues. Please e-mail SCAMS or Secretary if you are going to miss.

SGA Report: More parking may be added to CMU.

Webmaster: Website is good. Webcam will be moved into the met lab this week.

OPEN FLOOR: Senior exit banquet-committee leader is changed to Jacob Owens. $5.00 a ticket.  Possible speakers: Brandon Hoving (NWS) , Laura Valesquez (Wood TV).

Next Tuesday at 8:15 pm there is a meeting about conferences in the Met lab. Congrats to Kim on getting into Purdue!


Meeting date: 3/31/09


Meeting in Session: 9:01pm

Meeting Adjourned: 9:48pm

Presidents Report: Road cleanup is April 25, 2009! It starts at 11 am.

Vice President’s Report:  Committees.

Committee reports:

Public relations: Who will be at main stage? Discuss now and remind people during the summer. The poster is for Megan and Katie to do.  Schools are done for now-we will return to Vowler elementary in the fall. The residence hall signs will be done soon so that we can post them by next semester. Annie is in charge.

Conferences: Iowa is tomorrow!

Activities: Road cleanup is April 25, 2009. Starts at 11 am. Possible group attending Demetri Martin the same day.  Thanks to those who came Monday night!

Jobs/internships: Nothing new. Morris may have a job in Traverse City.

Fundraising: Do campus surveys for money. The Las Senioritas gift certificates are $5.00 each if you want one! See Cort.

Treasurer’s Report: Checking’s: $696.00 and Savings: $2022.46. This was before pizza.

Secretary’s Report: Please make sure you sign the attendance sheet that is going around. Attendance is important to the club. If you miss more than two meetings (unexcused) you will have to repay your dues. Please e-mail SCAMS or Secretary if you are going to miss.

SGA Report: did not attend/was out of town.

Webmaster: Website is good. Webcam will be moved into the met lab this week. Need to talk to Mel.

OPEN FLOOR: Senior exit banquet is April 21, 2009. Tuesday at 9pm-formal. It will be $5.00 a ticket.---Megan Babich. 



Monthly Meeting Minutes

March 19, 2009

The sixth meeting of the 2008/2009 Central North Carolina Chapter of the American Meteorological Society was held at the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Fluid Modeling Facility (FMF) in Research Triangle Park, North Carolina.   A short business meeting was called to order at 7:30 PM by President Kara Smith.  20 people were in attendance.   

Mike Gravier introduced the night’s speaker and host, Dr. Stephen G. Perry, Atmospheric Modeling and Assessment Division, National Exposure Research Laboratory, United States Environmental Protection Agency.   

Dr. Perry began by introducing his co-speaker Dr. Stephen Heist, who is also a Physical Scientist at the FMF.  Dr. Perry then began a short presentation which provided an overview of the FMF.   The work performed at the FMF is intended to “conduct lab studies of fluid flows to advance our understanding of atmospheric dispersion”.  These studies include permitting and enforcement of National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS), human and ecological exposure assessments, evaluating the impacts of new regulations, air pollution mitigation, and emergency response applications.  Studies at the FMF fall under two main categories.  The first is basic flow and dispersion research, which focuses on physics, and the second is site-specific studies. 

A brief history of the FMF was presented.   Prior to 1973, the site of the FMF was an indoor tennis facility.  In 1974, after the site was converted for the EPA’s use, a meteorological wind tunnel was installed.  Between 1975 and 2002, a stratified wind channel and towing tank, with a test section of 2.4m by 1.2m by 25m was used.  From 1988 to 2003, a convection water tank was also used in the facility. 

An example of basic flow and dispersion research was shown by demonstrating various flows around buildings, the effect on stack plumes, and “down wash”.  Several slides and videos were used to highlight the effects.  To demonstrate the complexities of using numerical modeling, and to highlight the need for wind tunnel studies, Dr. Perry showed a model of dispersion flow in downtown Salt Lake City.

Four recent, site-specific studies performed at the FMF were discussed.  A 1:600 scale model of Lower Manhattan was used to simulate and study the effects of smoke originating from the two month fire at the former World Trade Center site after the September 11, 2001 attacks.  A 1:200 scale model of the Pentagon in Washington D.C. was built to analyze the effect of a plume originating from a nearby highway.  Concern about the proximity of major highways to the Pentagon, and the possible effects from a potential hazardous release from one, led to the study.  A third study examined the concentration gradient of mobile emissions in near-roadway locations.   The fourth study, currently in the meteorological wind tunnel, aims to analyze the mobile emissions under a train overpass in a Las Vegas industrial area.

Dr. Perry continued the tour by demonstrating the Las Vegas study in the meteorological wind tunnel.  The demonstration highlighted the use of a laser doppler velocimeter as a measurement tool.   After the demonstration, Dr. Perry showed a large model of Midtown Manhattan that, although not yet used in the meteorological wind tunnel, provided the group with a sense of the effort needed to create an accurate model. 

Mike Gravier thanked Dr. Perry for his presentation to the chapter and presented him with a chapter coffee mug.  The next meeting is scheduled for April 16th.  The host will be Dr. Nicole Y. Thurgate, Research Associate, Department of Zoology, North Carolina State University.  Her presentation will be titled, “Amphibian Ecology and the Potential Influence of Climate Change.  The meeting was adjourned at 8:50.---Ryan Cleary.



February/March Newsletter.--- Steve Tracton and Andrea  Bleistein.



Meeting Minutes

24 March, 2009

President Schwedler called the meeting to order at 7:00 PM.  He welcomed all who were present to the meeting.

President Schwedler

Vice President Deppe

Treasurer Karsten

Social Chair Hoffman

Academic Chair Prentice

Past President Hobbs

Cy’s Eyes on the Skies


Historian Witter

Outreach Chair Rabideau

Officer Nominations

People who were nominated during the AMS meeting were:

President:  Matthew Hoffman, Andrew Mair, Rachel Hatteberg, Ryan Alliss, JoBeth Minniear

Vice President:  Nick Carletta

Treasurer:  Elizabeth Suess, Emily Janssen

Secretary:  Nick Krauel, Stephanie Melton, Mario Winburn

Social Chair:  Rachael Witter, Tyler Roney

Academic Chair:  Justin Wittrock, Peter Effertz, Shannon Rabideau

Webmaster:  John Sedig

Historian:  Ryan Lueck, Ryan Spies

Sophomore Chair:  Joe Halvorson, David Coberly, Anthony Lueck

Outreach Chair:  (no nominations were made)

President Schwedler then adjourned the meeting and was ended at 8:30 PM.


The next meeting will be held on Thursday, 23 April 2009.  Remember to attend as officer elections will be held at this meeting.---Justin Schultz.



The March 2009 meeting of the Kansas City Chapter of the American Meteorological Society was held on March 25th at the LoneStar Steakhouse in Kansas City, Kansas.  In addition to our normal membership attendance, the chapter hosted several out of town visitors in a collaborative effort with the National Weather Service Training Center. 

Several important items remained on the ongoing agenda for the March meeting.  Items of note included:  Adopt-a-highway program, Science Fair, National Weather Association paperwork, upcoming meetings, and officer elections.

Chapter President Evan Bookbinder continued to serve as liaison between the Kansas City AMS and the Missouri Department of Transportation (MODOT) in continued talks about the Adopt-a-Highway program.  As of March 25th, the chapter had been approved by MODOT to become an Adopt-a-Highway partner with responsibilities of a stretch of highway near the Kansas City Suburb of Lees Summit, MO.  The club will be required to maintain a two mile stretch of roadway, with trash pickup required four times a year.   With the end of the 2008-2009 club year rapidly approaching, scheduling a date and time for the first trash pickup day was discussed.  As agreed by chapter members, Treasurer Mark OMalley will send an interest email to all chapter members polling for available dates to schedule our first adopt-a-highway participation. 

Chapter Vice President Joe Lauria briefed the organization on the upcoming Science Pioneer Science Fair to be held April 2nd.  As a yearly tradition the Kansas City Chapter will be providing three judges as well as two awards to the winner of the Science and Environment category.

An important step in the history of the Kansas City Chapter of the AMS, took place at the March meeting.  As voted on earlier in the calendar year, exceptional interest was expressed by the memberships to not only remain an active member of the AMS, but to also share a dual membership with the National Weather Association (NWA).  Since nearly a third of the chapter memberships were already NWA members, a unanimous vote to join the NWA was approved in February.  At our March meeting, two active national NWA members officially signed and sponsored the Kansas City Chapter for participation in the NWA.  President Evan Bookbinder will submit this documentation to the folks at the national NWA for approval.  With this expected change, the organization will need to develop a new set of by-laws and ratify the club constitution.  A committee was formed to investigate changes and begin to develop a new set of by-laws and propose a new constitution to the membership base.

Finally, with spring rapidly approaching, only 2-3 meetings remained before the club breaks for summer.  Officers continued to look for new speakers for upcoming meetings and asked chapter members for feedback as to who we should bring to visit the chapter.  One meeting proposal included a club activity involving the Kansas City Royals with members attending an evening baseball game.  Officer elections are also expected to take place during our April meeting.  Early nominations were accepted for all positions, with current officers re-nominated for their same positions.  Club by-laws allow officers to serve two terms in their respective positions if they do so wish.  Additional nominations will take place prior to elections.


March Speaker Presentation Notes:

Our guest speaker for March was Dr. Mary Ann Cooper from the University of Illinois at Chicago, who presented on the topic of, “The Myths and Facts of Lightning Injuries and Casualties”.  Dr. Cooper studied undergraduate biochemistry, and received her medical degree from Michigan State University, then completed her residency at the University of Cincinnati where she began her study of electrical and lightning injuries. Dr. Cooper is now considered one of the world’s foremost medical experts on lightning injuries, and serves as a senior faculty member at the University of Illinois at Chicago, as well as holding faculty appointments in the Departments of Neurology and Bioengineering. In addition, she directs the Lightning Injury Research Program and has received a "Special Award" from the American Meteorological Association "for outstanding work on the medical effects of lightning which has enhanced the treatment of lightning strike victims and revolutionized lightning safety worldwide."

The following is a summation of Dr. Cooper’s talk.  To view this presentation in its entirety, please visit the Kansas City AMS website at:  In 2008, only 22 deaths were reported due to lightning strikes.  These statistics keep lightning as the number weather killer in the country with flooding causing the most deaths nationally.  There are many myths and facts about lightning.  Several lightning myths include the following: lightning always kills, few people are impacted, metal always attracts lightning, lightning always hits the tallest object, strike survivors rarely have after effects, and lightning only occurs when it rains.

Those struck by lightning usually suffer from chronic pain, sympathetic nerve system injuries and neurocognative injuries.  But how can a person mitigate the threat of injury from lightning?  Here are a few tips on how to avoid lightning injury.  Avoid the threat and stay indoors, if you must be outdoors make sure you have a plan and avoid risky areas, have a list of all safe areas in your location, and if you are struck by lightning call 911 immediately as most lightning deaths are caused by cardiac arrest.---Matthew Dux.




March 11, 2009 General Business Meeting

Attendance: 43 (Including Executive Board)

Start Time: 7:01pm

              LSC AMS President Hayley LaPoint welcomed the club to our latest General Business Meeting.  The club began by recapping our excellent 34th Northeastern Storm Conference.  Hayley asked that evaluations for the conference should be sent in by April 1st, and they are available online.  The president then moved on to upcoming speakers that will be presenting on campus. The first presenter was recapped which occurred Tuesday March 3rd. The presenter was Jim Politis who is broadcast meteorologist in Mason City, IA.   The second speaker will be Rob Carolan from Hometown Forecasting in Nashua, NH. Rob will be presenting on Tuesday April 14th.  Hayley concluded his portion of the meeting with details on the AMS Elections.  The AMS will be holding a Pre-Election meeting on April 1st.  Here members interested in executive board positions for 2008-09 will get a detailed description of each board position.  The elections will be held on our April GBM, tentatively scheduled for April 15th.

              Vice president Josh Redinger mentioned that members with ideas for future speakers should see him and also those with ideas so the website should present those as well. 

              Secretary Kaitlyn Jacobs let the club know that the bulletin board will be updated with photos from the NESC and the upcoming Science Fair.  She asked any members with photos to submit them so they can be posted.

              Tony McGee, AMS Treasurer, went over the upcoming Budgeting season which will occur through multiple meetings with the Lyndon State Student Government Association (SGA). 

              Public Relations Director Ryan Long once again thanked the club members for their help at all of our events this year.  He mentioned that anyone interested in the P.R. job to see him about the position.

              Community Outreach Officer Rich Maliawco came with good news.  The club has received at least 65 registrations for the Science Fair, so it will go on as planned.  Rich also mentioned there will be a quick Community Outreach Meeting prior to the science fair.

              Joe DiTommaso, AMS Historian, also requested any photos from the NESC to put up on the other AMS Bulletin Board.

              The LSC-AMS & NWA then concluded the General Business Meeting with a candy raffle. 

End Time: 7:36pm---Kaitlyn Jacobs.                         



Meeting Type:  General Meeting

Meeting Date: March 11, 2009

Attendance: 34

Meeting in Session: 7:17 pm


Budget Report (Treasurer Joe Moore)

Nominations (President Jim Kurdzo)

Speakers: Tom Russell and Paul Lynch

Meeting out of Session: 8:25 pm---Samantha McGraw.



March Executive Meeting Minutes 3/23/09.

March General Meeting 3/31/09 .---John Smith.



March was an eventful and exciting month for PSUBAMS. A March 26 meeting featured an informative talk by Paul Heppner, the vice-president of the Philadelphia/Delaware branch of the AMS. Mr. Heppner, a Penn State alum, spoke about his career path in meteorology and his professional experiences as a broadcast meteorologist and IT meteorologist. He discussed his current experiences as co-founder of aviation meteorology company, Spatial Software Solutions, Inc. The talk provided a great opportunity for members to learn about aviation weather, as Mr. Heppner previewed a few of the data workstation products he helps produce at Spatial Software Solutions, Inc.

Also in March, PSUBAMS held its annual movie night. Students treated themselves to a nice break from the semester in the comfort of the newly renovated weather station. Freshly popped popcorn, cookies, and soft drink refreshments were served. Appropriately, the movie Twister was previewed. PSUBAMS Movie Night was a casual and relaxing get-together for members.

The winning t-shirt design was selected for PSUBAMS annual t-shirt design contest. T-shirt orders have been processed and the official 2009-2010 PSUBAMS t-shirt will be on sale throughout the meteorology department in April. PSUBAMS is also gearing up for Weatherfest which will be held on Saturday April 18. Weatherfest, run entirely by PSUBAMS, is an event where local central Pennsylvania middle school students can learn about meteorology through various student-run presentations and demonstrations. PSUBAMS is looking forward to a great April, which will feature the weather station grand opening commemoration and PSUBAMS elections for 2009-2010.---Alex Matus.



Meeting Minutes

Thursday, March 12, 2009

5:00 PM – 8:30 PM 



The March meeting of the Smoky Mountain AMS chapter was held on the 23rd. Around 15 members met first for dinner at "Calhoun's on the River" in Knoxville. The meeting then convened with around twenty people in Room 266 of the Biosystems Engineering Bldg. on the University of Tennessee Ag campus. Bob Becker (WATE Channel 6) spoke about "Revisiting Hurricane Ike".

The following was a synopsis of his talk: "Hurricane Ike devastated parts of the southeast Texas coast. They say pictures are worth more than a thousand words. Bob shared with us many pictures showing the complete devastation suffered by parts of the southeast Texas coastline, just east of Galveston. This was a part of the country where Bob worked for almost ten years and spent many vacations. As a result, this storm hit Bob extra hard, and he wanted to share some of the damage from this storm with our group."

A business meeting was then held afterwards to discuss the science fair awards and officer elections. It was decided to continue paying $100 for the Bob Miller Memorial award, $100 for two chapter awards (two $100 savings bonds), three engraved plaques, and a $100 donation to the Southern Appalachian Science and Engineering Fair (SASEF). It was voted to keep Bob Becker as Treasurer for another year, since transferring the books again would be inconvenient. Nominations for President were Dale Kaiser and Jerry McDuffie (both have served one term in the past); Vice-President nominations were Bobby Pleasant, Jesse Miller, Loren Marz (none of them have served in the past). Elections will be held via email before the May meeting.---David Gaffin.



TAMSCAMS had their March meeting on Wednesday March 4, 2009. At our meeting we discussed participation in Big Event (campus-wide community service project) and Weather camp. Weather camp is a program we started last year where meteorology students volunteer to teach 4th grade students on a Saturday at the College Station Conference Center. Weather camp will be held Saturday April 18 of this year. We explain weather to the students and also do hands-on experiments that demonstrate weather events. We also held officer nominations at our March meeting for next years TAMSCAMS officers. Our speaker at this meeting was the WCM from Houston: Dan Reilly. He spoke to us about severe weather and gave us storm spotter training.---Elizabeth Bange.



Minutes from the March 19, 2009 AMS Meeting  



Monthly Meeting

 March 27, 2009 11:00am


The meeting began with guest speaker Jonathan Case from NASA (SpoRT) who talked about his current research in land surface modeling and offered some guidance from his career path. 

Treasurer Chris Jewett provided a treasury report dating back to the 2006-2007 academic year and ending with our current balance. 

We are looking into buying a portable tornado machine along with several items to promote our chapter including pencils, balloons, rulers, and thermometers.  The Student Government Association has currently put a hold on funds according to Jon Fairman.  Therefore, we may place this item on hold until the beginning of the new school year this fall.  We are still looking for other ways to fund the tornado machine at this time.

An update on the 3rd Annual Severe Weather Poster Contest was given by Elise Johnson.  Emails have been sent out to area schools informing them again of the contest.  Poster voting will take place late in the week of April 13th.  We are still looking for additional prizes for the winners.  Any knowledge of area businesses that would like to donate prizes can be brought to Elise.  The winners will be displayed at the Panoply Arts Festival April 24-26.  Also, we will again volunteer at the Huntsville NWS booth at Panoply. 

Judging for the Alabama Science and Engineering Fair will take place on Friday, April 3rd. 

Our T-shirts have been delivered and polos have been ordered.  Several members of the faculty have also purchased polos to wear at events for UAH. 

Several social gatherings will take place as part of celebrating the end of the academic year.  The Huntsville Stars baseball team will begin their season on Thursday, April 9th.  A cookout will take place at Holly Ramey’s house on Saturday, April 25th; grilling will begin between 4:00-5:00 p.m. 

The nomination period for 2009-2010 officers is open until voting commences at the next meeting.  Any nominations can be sent to any current officer. 

Webmaster Christina Crowe is updating the website with current information regarding student year and research topics.  This information can be viewed at

Our next meeting will take place on April 17, 2009 at 11am in NSSTC 4065.  Elections will be held at this meeting.---Holly Ramey. 



March 4, 2009 at 7 pm

The meeting began at 7:00 pm. Erin Little from KMBC-TV in Kansas City did a presentation about how she started her career in broadcast meteorology. After, officer reports were given. Some things discussed were Severe Weather Workshop held next week for Severe Weather Week and the Annual Spring Swing softball tournament. R.S.V.P cards were handed out for the Meteorology Club Banquet next month. At the end of the meeting, officer applications for next year were handed out and members voted for the Meteorology Club t-shirt design. The meeting ended at 7:45 pm.---Natalie Walters.



Minutes from:

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Odegard Hall Room 356

5:00 p.m.

Members Present:

Al Borho – Advisor

Dan Koller - President

Kelsey Watkins - Vice President

Erin Bertschi - Treasurer

Kevin Skow - Secretary

Andrea Neumann

Leah Tatarak

Matt Saari

Nichole Shotwell

Kathryn Crosby

Aymie Oliver-Wedwick

Aaron Kennedy

Amanda Homann

Dan Adriaansen

Miranda Hilgers

Tim Logan

Mike Lanciki

Vanessa Pearce

Kim Bestul

Shawn Palmquist

Jennifer Dvorak

Peter Johnson

Scott Jorgenson

Garrett Jepsen

Krista Cooley

Jeff Tilley

Call to Order:

President Dan Koller called the AMS meeting to order at 5:00 pm.

Past Minutes:

The minutes from 02/17/09 were read.

Officer Reports:

-Vice-President’s Report: None

-Secretary’s Report: None

-Treasurer’s Report: The AMS balance is currently: $2330.76.

Guest Speaker:

-Kevin Skow from the Mesoscale Dynamics class (ATSC 460) presented a storm time lapse video and provided a synopsis of the event.


Old Business:

-AMS hosted a hot chocolate fundraiser in the Link last Friday, February 20. We raised 23 dollars from this fundraiser.

-Dues for this semester (for those who haven’t paid yet) are fifteen dollars and are due to Erin today (March 3)!

-The speaker for our department banquet will be Mark Fraizer, the MIC at the Grand Forks NWS.

-The Who’s Who Wall is now on display in the lobby of 4th floor Clifford Hall

New Business:        


-It is getting to be that time of year when we vote for next year’s AMS chapter officers. Nominations will be accepted at the next AMS meeting, which is March 24. In order to be nominated for either the president or vice-president position, you must have been an officer or a committee chair in the past. Anyone can serve as the secretary or the treasurer. Voting will take place on April 7; it will likely be along meeting, so pizza will be provided.

-Activities Committee

-Photo Contest: Dan Koller won the February photo contest. Photos for the March contest are due on March 15. See the website for more details.

-Broomball: Registration for the intramural league runs from March 4 to 25. Games begin on March 30.

-Spring Trip: The Duluth trip is slated for the weekend of April 3-5. We will be taking tours of the NWS and a local TV station there. All of those planning to go on this trip (for sure, no maybes) need to let Leah know by the end of this week (Friday). You must have participated for at least 2 hours in an AMS fundraiser event or have brought 2 sets of baked goods for the 4th floor or hot chocolate fundraisers.

-Skywarn Training: We decided that we would like to have a Skywarn spotter training session on April 16 at the NWS office in Grand Forks. We will know by the end of the week if this will work for the NWS.

-Spring Picnic and Big Event: These events are later in the spring and will be discussed at upcoming meetings.

-Fundraising Committee

-AMS will be selling popcorn in the Memorial Union the first week after Spring Break—a signup sheet was passed around for this event (again).

-The 4th floor fundraising treats sheet was passed around.

-Banquet Committee

-We discussed the various logistics of the banquet, including:

-Pictures/Slideshow-We need more pictures!!


-Food/Menu- We will post a poll online so people can vote on what they would want for the banquet dinner.



-Faculty Awards- Voting for these will be on April 7. If you have any ideas for new awards, talk to Matt Saari.

If anyone wants to help out with this committee—talk to one of the officers or the Banquet Chair (Matt Saari).


-The UND ATSC department will be participating in the Grand Forks Market Place for Kids student workshop on March 27. We are looking for ATSC students to help run various demonstrations for the 5th and 6th grade students. The department may have a booth at the Devils Lake workshop on March 16 and the Fargo workshop on May 8. Anyone with questions should talk to Fred Remer.

-Several new job openings have become available for the North Dakota Weather Modification project. These and other job openings are posted on the job board on 4th floor (near the copy room) and were sent out via Listserv.

-Al would like to remind those who need letters of recommendation from teachers for jobs or scholarships that you need to give them at least a two week notice before your application is due so they have time to write the letter.



-The meeting was adjourned without objection at 5:40 pm.


Minutes from:

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Odegard Hall Room 356

5:00 p.m.

Members Present:

Al Borho – Advisor

Dan Koller - President

Kelsey Watkins - Vice President

Erin Bertschi - Treasurer

Kevin Skow - Secretary

Andrea Neumann

Leah Tatarak

Matt Saari

Nichole Shotwell

Kathryn Crosby

Aymie Oliver-Wedwick

Aaron Kennedy

Amanda Homann

Dan Adriaansen

Miranda Hilgers

Mike Lanciki

Vanessa Pearce

Shawn Palmquist

Ben Schink

Garrett Jepsen

Krista Cooley

Angelle Van Oploo

Jeff Tilley

Call to Order:

              President Dan Koller called the AMS meeting to order at 5:00 pm.

Past Minutes:

The minutes from 03/03/09 were read.

Officer Reports:

-Vice-President’s Report: None

-Secretary’s Report: None

-Treasurer’s Report: The AMS balance is currently: $2590.76.

Guest Speaker:

-Andrea Neumann from the Mesoscale Dynamics class (ATSC 460) presented a YouTube video of a severe weather event in Wisconsin/Illinois in January 2008 and provided a synopsis of the event.


Old Business:

-The Who Who’s Wall is now in display on 4th floor of Clifford Hall

-The speaker for our department banquet will be Mark Fraizer, the MIC at the Grand Forks NWS.

New Business:        

- The following people were nominated for different AMS officer positions:

President: Kelsey Watkins, Matt Saari, Leah Tatarak, and Erin Bertschi (pending acceptance)

Vice-President: Kelsey Watkins, Matt Saari, Leah Tatarak, and Erin Bertschi (pending acceptance)

Treasurer: Kelsey Watkins, Matt Saari, Leah Tatarak, Erin Bertschi (pending acceptance), and Angelle Van Oploo

Secretary: Kelsey Watkins, Matt Saari, Leah Tatarak, Erin Bertschi (pending acceptance), Angelle Van Oploo, and Mike Lanciki

Voting for officers and faculty awards will take place on April 7; it will likely be along meeting, so pizza will be provided.

-Activities Committee

-Photo Contest: The March photo contest is underway and ends on March 31. The April photo contest will be shorter than the last two photo contests due to the banquet. Emails will be sent out regarding these dates.

-Broomball: A roster for broomball was passed around. Broomball starts next week (March 30) and runs through the month of April. Our games will be on Monday’s and Wednesday’s at 10:00pm at the Ralph Olympic Ice Sheet. Please remember to bring your Ucard to the games. Contact Leah for more info.

-Spring Trip: The Duluth trip is slated for the weekend of April 3-5. We will be taking tours of the NWS and a local TV station there. Those who were attending had a short info session after the main AMS meeting.

-Skywarn Training: Due to the flooding this spring, the Skywarn training has been cancelled.

-Spring Picnic and Big Event: The Big Event is May 2 and the ATSC picnic will be on May 3. These events are later in the spring and will be discussed at the next meeting.

-Fundraising Committee

-AMS is currently selling popcorn in the Memorial Union this week—a signup sheet was passed around (again).

-The 4th floor baked goods fundraising signup sheet was passed around.

-Banquet Committee

-Here are updates for the banquet:

-Pictures/Slideshow-We need more pictures!! Please send them to Dan A.

-The ATSC faculty will decide on the food menu this year

-Flowers are being checked into

-Invitations have been sent out to ATSC families and VIPs.

-The cost of the banquet is 20 dollars per person. The only payment accepted is check, which should be made out to the UND Alumni Association.

-Faculty Awards- Voting for these will be on April 7. If you have any ideas for new awards, talk to Matt Saari.


-The Grand Forks Market Place for Kids has been cancelled.



-The meeting was adjourned without objection at 5:40 pm.---Kevin Skow.



Disaster Preparation Response and Recovery using GPS-Enabled Cell Phones

DATE:                            March 31, 2009

LOCATION:                  USF Campus

                                      Center for Urban Transportation Research

PRESENTATION       The March meeting of the West Central Florida Chapter was presented by Philip Winters and Sean Barbeau from the Center for Urban Transportation Research (CUTR) which is located at the University of South Florida (USF). The presentation focused on disaster preparation response and recovery using GPS-enabled cell phones. Winters and Barbeau provided an overview of their location aware information system research and the numerous weather-related applications to their studies. They noted applications in disaster preparation (getting pertinent information out to the public such as severe weather warnings and transportation concerns during evacuations) as well as response & recovery (aiding emergency response teams to cover needed areas). The location aware technology has been developed in collaboration with USF’s Computer Science and Engineering department and has been developed so that their software can be used with existing hardware, i.e. cell phones.

Barbeau began the presentation by explaining that location aware technology (Figure 1) uses the knowledge of one’s current position. Location aware applications can know where you are (latitude and longitude), how fast you are moving, what direction you are travelling, and uses GPS embedded technology. Barbeau highlighted the application of this to a hurricane evacuation. With access to this information, Emergency Managers would be able to better respond, e.g. get resources to an evacuating population. He also noted that with location based services, one could capture photos. An example was then given by an AMS member in the audience of how useful this would be was for Skywarn spotters to report tornadoes. Not only would they have the photo, but the photo would contain the latitude and longitude. This would save the National Weather Service much time confirming reports and they would be able to issue warnings earlier.

Winters then discussed EZ-finder which is an application CUTR have developed using GPS enabled cell phones tied to GIS data on evacuation zones so individuals can automatically receive text messages. Winters again emphasized the hurricane application to this. People can get crucial information (such as evacuation orders) without occupying critical emergency management center personnel and phone lines. EZ-finder can also be used to help individuals know about re-entry information such that text messages can be sent to different groups of people to let them know when they can come back after an evacuation, or if they should stay away if there are pollution problems or other issues Figure 2). Winters pointed out that if you ask coastal residents what evacuation zone they are in, many do not know. This could therefore serve as a tool informing people what (if any) evacuation zone they are in (based on the location of the GPS in the cell phone).

Barbeau then discussed “TRAC-IT” which can be used to track travel behavior for long periods of time. They noted that this application may help emergency managers to understand when, what route and where people are evacuating to. Finally, Winters discussed some application of wireless detection and communicating technologies with a potential application for use with detecting water rising in a river or storm surge. With a network of sensors, one could examine how storm surge affects different areas which could then be used for modeling.

Barbeau and Winters concluded by reemphasizing that the technology is rapidly expanding to cover a variety of different situations, from personal mobility planning to security detection network monitoring systems, to providing communications in a variety of formats to enhance public safety. Amber Alerts, major traffic concerns and other types of warnings can be displayed and communicated in real time. The technology applications already include users capturing images on cell phones to be displayed simultaneously on maps of the area, and these images and maps can be used in many different formats, including personal usage for travel planning and assisting disabled people.

CUTR has forty full time researchers. CUTR is funded by contracts and grants, and has been in existence for over 20 years. The team is now looking for grant funding to get these projects operational as soon as possible since their work has much potential to save lives. For more information about CUTR’s research in location-aware information systems, please visit their webpage at CUTR’s presentation to the WCFLAMS can be viewed on the chapter’s website at

Figure 1: Sean Barbeau (CUTR) explaining Location-Aware applications

Figure 2: EZFinder software provides hurricane evacuation

information based on the real-time location of the user.

SPEAKERS: PHILIP L.WINTERS, Director, Transportation Demand Management Program. BS, Civil Engineering, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, 1978. Specialties: transportation demand management, travel behavior change, telework, training, and program evaluation.

SEAN BARBEAU, Research Associate. BS, Computer Science, University of South Florida, 2003. Specialties: Intelligent systems for mobile devices (e.g. cell phones), location-based services, GPS, mobile application design in resource-constrained systems, Java Micro Edition, and neural networks.

BUSINESS MEETING:          Our Business Meeting was important, as nominations were accepted for officers. We will vote on these between the 6th and 9th of May. Information about the nominees will be collected by Dr. Collins and made available online.

Chapter President: Andy Johnson

Vice President: Dr. Jennifer Collins

Recording Secretary: Alicia Williams

Corresponding Secretary: Brian LaMarre

Treasurer: Nancy Knight

Web Administrator: Thomas Walsh and Christopher Bell.

Some new people have been nominated into officer positions and we welcome them to their new roles!

Other business news covered included discussing the upcoming banquet meeting, introduction of members, and discussion of gathering individual member information to be used for our chapter summary write up for our season.  We welcomed attendees who often come as well as those such as the Manatee Emergency Management Officer whose first meeting this was.

TREASURER’S REPORT: Our Chapter Account as of 3/31/09 is $834.60

CONCLUSION:  The meeting was attended by 16 AMS members, guests, and students of Dr. Jennifer Collins. Refreshments were available to those in attendance.---Jennifer M. Collins and Laura Monk.



March Meeting Minutes.---Paul A. Gehred.





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