Promoting Collaboration among Trainers in the National Weather Service
Victoria C. Johnson (Cooperative Program for Operational Meteorology, Education and Training) and Sherwood R. Wang (Cooperative Program for Operational Meteorology, Education and Training)
Copyright: © 2002
In the last several years, the National Weather Service (NWS) has undergone a massive modernization and reorganization effort, substantially changing the organization’s structure and the technologies used to produce forecasts. When the reorganization is completed in the year 2000, the NWS will have approximately 120 local weather forecast offices throughout the country (plus Puerto Rico and Guam), with over 1000 forecasters. The new technological systems (such as Doppler radars and upgraded satellites) have produced a flood of data that requires forecasters to have up—to—date scientific knowledge, computer skills, and cognitive tools for synthesizing the vast amount of information available. Early in the modernization process, the NWS recognized the need for a strong training program to help its forecasters effectively use the new technologies and data to better predict deadly weather events. Toward that end, the NWS developed a unique peer training system and created a new position, the Science Operations Officer (SOO), in each forecast office to lead it.