SIUE students and faculty on a storm chasing trip. EDWARDSVILLE – Geography students at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville enhanced their knowledge of meteorology and climatology with a unique learning experience through storm chasing. Students and faculty traveled over 3,000 miles in six days tracking and chasing storms in Oklahoma and Texas as part of the GEOG 429 Storm Chasing and Assessment field course.

“The course consists of several days of classroom instruction on severe weather forecasting and storm spotting, and then the field component allows students to take what they’ve learned in the classroom and apply that knowledge outside of the classroom to forecast and track storms,” said Alan Black, PhD, assistant professor and graduate program director in the Department of Geography and Geographic Information Systems. “There is a huge difference between talking about these topics in a classroom and successfully forecasting the weather and experiencing it in the field.”

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Course curriculum from various geography classes came to life through the trip. The students not only were able to further their education, but experienced new states and areas while storm chasing.

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“This trip has enhanced my educational journey by confirming what I was considering doing after I graduate,” said Emily Stanton, junior geography major. “It has made me realize that I love weather and everything that comes with it, and that my time at SIUE has definitely been worth it.”

“Storm chasing is a great experience for visual learners,” added Makenzi Keller, senior geography major. “To be able have the chance to go out in the field safely with a knowledgeable meteorologist in Dr. Black while receiving course credit is a once in a lifetime opportunity.”

To learn more about the SIUE Department of Geography and Geographic Information Systems visit

Central to SIUE’s exceptional and comprehensive education, the College of Arts and Sciences offers degree programs in the natural sciences, humanities, arts, social sciences and communications. The College touches the lives of all SIUE students, helping them explore diverse ideas and experiences, while learning to think and live as fulfilled, productive members of the global community. Study abroad, service-learning, internships and other experiential learning opportunities better prepare SIUE students not only to succeed in our region’s workplaces, but also to become valuable leaders who make important contributions to our communities.

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