Our organization, GSAAS, is responsible for organizing this year's Annual Colour of Weather Networking Reception at the 2014 Annual American Meteorological Society's Conference in Atlanta, GA and would like to personally invite you to attend and participate in this year's Annual Colour of Weather Networking Reception.

The Annual Colour of Weather (CoWx) networking reception will be held from 8:30 PM to 10:00 P.M. on Monday, 3 February 2014.   

The theme of this year's reception is once again Widening Professional Networks for Diversity and Sustainability (WINDS). The 2014 reception marks the ninth year of the formal receptions.  The ad hoc receptions date back nearly a decade. To enhance this year's theme, we have incorporated a new blog community on Google + (https://plus.google.com/u/0/communities/113001177811457735156?cfem=1) to produce more effective networking and to stay up to date with information for the meeting and colleagues in the field. Please RSVP for the event at this site or noaa-cas@howard.edu

The next generation of scientists serving the atmospheric and related oceanic and hydrologic sciences community will be drawn from an American population that is more culturally and ethnically diverse than ever before. As custodians of our respective professions, today's scientists look to the future with great anticipation and the duty to encourage our brightest talents to pursue careers in the geosciences by providing access to leaders in the field and engaging them in ways that promote exchanges of pertinent career and professional information and advice, support inclusion, and break down stereotypes and barriers to success.

The Ninth Annual Colour of Weather reception is an event celebrating diversity of representation in careers and fields of study contributing to the atmospheric sciences. This event provides a unique mentoring and professional development experience for students and young professionals of color or from groups that are traditionally underrepresented in the fields of atmospheric sciences, earth sciences, hydrology, meteorology, and other fields encompassed by the AMS. The event is co-sponsored by NOAA, NOAA Center for Atmospheric Science, Howard University's GSAAS, and Colour of Weather, Inc. 

Additional, GSAAS has created a G+ (google community) to serve as a continuing platform for networking and exchange of information. Please pass this along to invite other colleagues who may be interested in following this community which provides status updates for the networking reception. Here is the link to join https://plus.google.com/u/0/communities/113001177811457735156?cfem=1

For additional information, please contact Dr. Vernon Morris (e-mail: vmorris@howard.edu)

Or visit http://annual.ametsoc.org/2014/index.cfm/programs-and-events/social-events/annual-colour-of-weather-cowx-networking-reception/

GSAAS has been featured in the Winter-Spring 2013 AMS Local Chapter Newsletter. Check out the newsletter at this link.
Thanks to the AMS for featuring us.
The 2012-2013 Executive Board has been elected.

President- Shadya Sanders
Vice President- Kar'retta Venable
Secretary- Megan Payne
Treasurer- Lorenza Cooper
Public Relations- Tasha Anderson
Student Representative- Felisha Lawrence

Congrats to the new E-board.

Thanks 2011-2012 Executive Board and previous exec boards, for all your hard work.  Let's keep GSAAS going strong!
Members of GSAAS and HUPAS have been highly engaged in helping the community and building professional development this month.

On March 8, members volunteered as judges for a science fair held at the Cleveland Elementary School (DCPS-ES).

Members participated at the DC Stem Fair at Wilson High School on March 24. They demonstrated experiments such as cloud in a bottle to students.

More recent, members traveled to Tallahassee, Florida for the 6th NOAA EPP Science and Education forum.  The event was held at Florida A & M University (FAMU). Members presented their research in both the oral and poster categories. Some members also received awards for their research.  UMD Ph.D candidate and NOAA-CAS fellow Serenella Linares, won first place for her research:  "Fungal Diversity Associated with Saharan Dust Storms", which was presented in the Climate and Mitigation session.  GSAAS President Mayra Oyola won an honorable mention (2nd place) in the same category.  Her presentation title was the "Analysis of the Interhemispheric Tropospheric Vertical Distribution of Ozone over the Atlantic Ocean: Assessing the “Ozone Paradox” during the 2011 Aerosols and Ocean Science Expedition". GSAAS member Shayda Sanders received an honorable mention in the Weather Ready Nation oral presentation category for her research "Relationships Between Demographics and Protective Actions during Severe Weather Outbreaks: 2011 Super Outbreak, Tuscaloosa, AL."  GSAAS member Monique Walker won an honorable mention  in the poster presentations, for her presentation of “Semi-Automated Alignment for Optimum LIDAR Performance”. The full list of winners can be found here. The winner's gallery is here.

NCAS also presented a video of some of the members of NCAS, their research projects and a few activities that occur within the program.
President Mayra Oyola presenting.
GSAAS member Karretta Venable presenting her research.
GSAAS Member Shayda Sanders during her oral presentation.
GSAAS Public Relations Officer Tasha Anderson with her research.
GSAAS Student Representative Ben Albright by his presentation.
UMD Ph.D Candidate and NOA-CAS Serenella Linares with members of GSAAS and faculty of Howard University. Congrats winners!
Members of GSAAS with faculty of Howard University and NOAA-CAS fellows.
On February 21, GSAAS held a seminar with Sharon Abbas, a former student, and current employee in ITT/Exelis Geospatial Systems. She provided insights of her 10-year career in the atmospheric sciences private employment sector.  She has had extensive international experience, marketing, and management exposure working  as a meteorologist.

She also provided stories of her time in Belgium.  She was in Belgium for three years and was the first minority at her company at Raytheon to do so.  She offered encouragement to the audience. "Don't be afraid to step out of the box and do something different," she stated as well as "Network and seek out mentors."

Thank you Ms. Abbas for your talk.

Members of GSAAS with Sharon Abbas.
_Students and faculty from Howard University participated last week at the 92nd Annual American Meteorological Society conference in New Orleans, Louisiana. Below are some pictures from the event:
Taken after the Awards Banquet.
GSAAS HU AMS poster.
Taken after the Colour of Weather Reception.
AMS- President Elect James Marshall Shepard speaking at the Colour of Weather Reception.
GSAAS HU Exec Board with James Marshall Shepard.
President Mayra Oyola, holding an issue of BAMS in which work she and other HUPAS students and facility worked on. She is also standing next to a poster she co-authored with academic advisor Dr. Nick Nalli.

Here is a link to that BAMS issue.
Secretary Lorenza Cooper explaining his research to a conference attendee.
For more photos please click here.
_Please address questions to Dr. Vernon Morris (vmorris@howard.edu) or  Mayra Oyola (mayra.i.oyola@bison.howard.edu).
The pictures from our GSAAS-Ween 2011 Party have been added to our Flickr site.

Check them out :-)
Here is the link.
Students and faculty from Howard University participated last week of the 1st International Conference on Saharan Dust Long range transport and effects, which was celebrated in San Juan, PR.  GSAAS/HU AMS President Mayra Oyola along with former vice-president, Yaitza Luna, former treasurer Jose Tirado and members Adrian Flores and Maria Velez presented their research at the workshop. Dr. Everette Joseph, Director of the Howard University Program of Atmospheric Sciences and Dr. Vernon Morris, Director of the NOAA Center of Atmospheric Sciences also participated of this event. The purpose of the meeting was to provide a scientific forum for specialists on various topic related to the long-range transport and impacts of mineral dust in the atmosphere, but with emphasis on African dust and its transport and impacts on the Americas.

Good work everyone!

Here are some pictures from the conference:
Students and faculty at the conference.
GSAAS member and former vice-president Yaitza Luna, displays her research.
GSAAS/HU AMS president Mayra Oyola with her research.
The Hilltop, Howard University's student newspaper has featured GSAAS in a recent article. Below is the article. It was written by contributing writer Khadija Ismail:

Launched in 2007, GSAAS the Graduate Students Association of Atmospheric Science, encourages students interested in science and the atmosphere to join.  Tasha Anderson is one of those students.

According to Anderson, who is now a Atmospheric Science major "anyone who is passionate about the atmosphere and wants to know more about weather should get on the bandwagon." GSAAS works closely with Dr. Gregory Jenkins, a faculty member of the department of physics, who is also an enthusiastic environmentalist. GSAAS is aiming to have an on-site weather campus service at Howard, which will also produce the weather forecast for the upcoming Homecoming.

 Ms. Anderson points out that " a lot of fashion people want to know what the weather will be like. You know, whether they should bring a jacket or an umbrella". When asked what's the difference between retrieving a weather summary on one of the news coverage websites and what they are offering, Dr. Jenkins said, "We can provide an almost precise account of what the weather will be like. When the winds will be moving in and at about what time the rain will start pouring." It's not just about providing a weather service to the students so they won't be drenched, but students will have a deeper understanding of the relevant issues that have profound consequences.

Another project that GSAAS has embarked on is the Saharan Air Layer. According to Anderson, GSAAS students and faculty in a concerted effort tried to "observe the dust off the coast of Africa." Dr. Jenkins said the "Saharan desert impacts the weather over the Atlantic ocean. It impacts hurricanes and carries dust as well, which causes a lot of health problems."

A few students have accompanied Dr. Jenkins to Senegal and Cape Verde to witness and examine how dust forms. It is almost impossible for the naked eye to see dust particles flying in the wind, so Dr. Jenkins illustrated how GSAAS students were able to utilize a computer program to trace the dust particles.

Jenkins also has some faith that the provost will approve a minor in atmospheric science. He emphasized the point that we live in a continuously changing world, and that students need to take more "educational science courses that would be of benefit. It would be nice to see undergraduates minor in atmospheric science connecting with the graduate atmospheric science students. Students giving service to their fellow students," he said.

Thrilled at the prospect of traveling, a potential member, Frank Ford, a sophomore mechanical engineering major, says he would give some consideration to joining GSAAS. "I like to predict things before they happen. The traveling aspect of the program really excited me," Ford said.

Students, who are very much on the fence about joining GSAAS, should keep in mind that GSAAS does not exclusively restrict itself to the abstract phenomenon of meteorology.

GSAAS offers other activities such as traveling, networking and community outreach. Anderson and her colleagues have traveled extensively just in the short duration of the program. They have visited areas such as Seattle, Connecticut, Virginia and even Puerto Rico to present their research. Different benefactors financed all of the trips, NASA being among them. Students who like giving back to the community should give some thought to join GSAAS.

One of the more memorable trips that Ms. Anderson recalls was the trip to a local D.C. school to illustrate how a tornado forms in a bottle.

GSAAS is accommodating to students of all fields. Science enthusiasts interested in testing the temperature get a chance to learn the ins and outs of the atmosphere and its implications. Students indifferent to science and its abstract phenomenon have an equal opportunity to gain much from the program.

Dr. Jenkins strongly believes that it is critical for students to expand their knowledge base. For him, everything is interrelated. The environment and climate is a crucial field of study that should not be overshadowed. Students need to be more in tune with their environment and cognizant of how our actions have profound consequences for our prosperity.

Jenkins also emphasized a need for consciousness of the persistently changing climate, and one of the best ways to understand the change is through GSAAS.

Here is the link to the article.

Thanks for featuring GSAAS, The Hilltop!