Tuesday, February 25, 2020

Transformative Student Experiences in Alpine Meteorology: REALM

Excitement is running high in my department as we prepare to host the Research Experiences In ALpine Meteorology (REALM) program this summer.

REALM is a National Science Foundation sponsored Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) program designed to enable the active participation of undergraduates in research.  What is unique about REALM is its focus on mountain weather.  We have received applications from students with diverse backgrounds from all over the United States.  Those accepted into the program will have an opportunity to learn and recreate in the mountains of Utah, which I expect will be transformative for many.  I personally remember my first trip to Utah when I was 16 years old and how our trip up Little Cottonwood Canyon further kindled my interest in mountain weather and winter storms.

Support from the National Science Foundation and University of Utah provides ten students with lodging, travel funds, and a stipend.  From late May to early August, these students will be in residence at the University of Utah and conducting research with faculty in the atmospheric and related sciences; developing professional communication, leadership, and teamwork skills; and gaining new understanding of mountain weather and climate.

Interest in the program is incredibly high.  We have received 145 applications from outstanding students!

Donor support can greatly enhance the REALM program.  Here are a few examples:
  • $100 pays for a weekly lunch with presentations by faculty, post-doctoral researchers, and graduate students within the Department of Atmospheric Sciences.
  • $200 provides prizes for year-end poster sessions.
  • $400 provides meals at Silver Fork Lodge for REALM orientation day.
  • $600 hosts a networking and socializing event with other STEM-related REU programs on campus such as those in Physics and Astronomy, Chemistry, and Material Sciences.
  • $3,000 covers student travel to Storm Peak Laboratory in Steamboat Springs, Colorado, a high elevation atmospheric research facility, including a visit to an air-quality monitoring site in the oil/gas fields of the Uinta Basin.
  • $10,000 enables REALM to admit an additional student into the program.
Gifts of any amount are greatly appreciated.  Please consider making a contribution today to help provide students with a transformative research experience.  Contributions can easily be made via the giving page for the University of Utah Atmospheric Sciences Department at https://auxiliary.apps.utah.edu/ugive/designation/107.  Simply indicate your desire for your contribution to be directed to REALM in the special instructions box.

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