Friday, April 27, 2012

The PUMA Blog reaches 1,000 viewers!

Secretary/Vice President-Elect: Juan Crespo

Three months ago this past Wednesday, I was sitting in my hotel room in New Orleans reflecting on the lessons I had learned during the AMS Conference since Saturday. Some of it included the talks I went to, but most of my thinking was focused on how could we improve PUMA. Of the 20 student chapters represented at the conference, almost 75% of them presented a poster about their group. Meanwhile, Purdue rested in their shadows for yet another year, not even proclaiming the great accomplishments PUMA has had recently. We needed a way to show the rest of the meteorological community how great PUMA really was.

Then it occurred to me, why not create a blog?! We were going no where by attempting to address our aging website, and other student chapters were having success with their blogs. I quickly created a Blogger account for PUMA under my name and made our first post in just over an hour, making me arrive late to the AMS Banquet that night. I had my doubts about the blog, it could just be redundant with the Facebook and Twitter accounts for PUMA, no one would want to take the time to read it, etc. But soon enough, the benefits of the blog paid off. From having the ability to post minutes from our meetings, to Alyssa updating us on her study abroad trip this semester in Europe, to my post the night before the deadly Southern Indiana/Kentucky tornadoes, the PUMA blog was a success. But we aren't done yet.

PUMA is continuing to grow like a parcel rising dry adiabatically in the atmosphere, and the PUMA blog will be right there to share with our viewers its progress. Here's to the next 1,000 views and a bright future for PUMA.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Storm Spotter Training tonight!

Always wondered what you need to look out for in the sky to tell if a severe storm is probable? Then come on out to our annual Storm Spotter Training tonight at 6pm in CIVL 3201. We will have 2 graduate students, well trained in Severe Weather, give us the details on how to detect severe weather so we can become certified storm spotters ourselves!

Just like any of our events, you don't have to be an Atmospheric Science major to join, all are welcomed! Knowing the signs of severe weather and being able to accurately relay that information to the proper authorities is one way we can help keep our communities safe from dangerous weather.

See you tonight, 6pm in CIVL 3201!

Need to contact us?

We are making some changes to PUMA as we transition administrations. The main changes are on the technological side of things. We have gone ahead and created our own email address so you can contact all the PUMA officers if you need to. Our new email address is:

You really can't forget any of our account names now since they all contain "Purdue Weather" in some way (Twitter: Purdue_Weather, Blog: purdue-weather, Gmail: This will make PUMA more centralized in communication with those outside the association, instead of spreading the communication amongst the officers.

Next step in advancing PUMA technology? Updating our actual website that hasn't been touched since last decade...

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Blencathra Field Course

Alyssa Hendricks

Hello Everyone! Hope you're all enjoying spring at Purdue.  I'm currently on my Easter Holiday at Leeds, or a fancy way of saying I get a month long spring break! The first week of which I had the opportunity to spend at Blencathra in the Lake District of England on a field course with second year and masters level students in the School of Earth and Environment.

The Lake District is easily the most gorgeous place in the UK, it's a giant national park and has the closest things England can claim as mountains. We climbed to the summit of one of these, taking measurements the way up and down to get a look at how the atmosphere changed with height.  At the actual field site, we set up various equipment to measure temperature, moisture, wind speed, and radiation on different masts throughout the site and studied changes over the week.  Nightly forecasts were also done and students competed against each other to have the most accurate forecasts - which was slightly nerve racking for an area I've never studied before. By the end of the week I had compiled an entire notebook of data and observations as well as analysis of the radiation budget and atmospheric dynamics for the time we were there.

For any students considering a study abroad program in Leeds, I would definitely recommend going on this field course. It was the perfect opportunity to study in an area outside of Leeds, see a new part of England, and get to know the other meteorology students and professors. I also got 10 credits of my required 60 completed in a matter of days with no final exam or project!

The remainder of my Easter Holiday has been spent traveling. So far to London, Paris, Edinburgh, Dublin and soon Berlin. How much more convincing do you need to consider a study abroad now?