Texas Tech University

Student Chapter of American Meteorological Society Hosts 10th Annual Severe Weather Awareness Day

Glenys Young

February 22, 2016

Texas Tech master’s student and The Weather Channel co-host Sarah Dillingham is the event’s special guest.

Severe Weather Awareness Day
Severe Weather Awareness Day

The Texas Tech University student chapter of the American Meteorological Society (AMS) will host the 10th annual Severe Weather Awareness Day from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday (Feb. 27) at the Science Spectrum and OMNI Theater, 2579 S. Loop 289.

The free community event will feature special guest Sarah Dillingham, a Texas Tech master's student and co-host of The Weather Channel's “Weather Underground TV.” Dillingham will have a booth to answer questions from attendees. She has been a severe weather producer at The Weather Channel for three years.

Sarah Dillingham
Sarah Dillingham

“We are beyond excited to have Sarah Dillingham as our special guest this year,” said Ashley Morris, president of the AMS student chapter. “While at Tech, she was involved in both the AMS student chapter and the organization of this annual Severe Weather Awareness Day event. It is very neat to see her go full circle from planner to guest at this event. She has a very special background due to working at CNN and now The Weather Channel, which is sure to excite guests and bring on many questions regarding her experiences. She is sure to make the 10th annual Severe Weather Awareness Day event a special one.”

Activities will include hands-on weather experiments for children of all ages, live weather demonstrations with tornado and lightning simulators, information on severe weather preparedness and door prizes. Storm chasing vehicles and weather instruments from Texas Tech's Severe Storm Research Team will be on site and open for all to see.

The American Red Cross will offer two sessions of The Pillowcase Projects, in which children from third through eighth grade can learn severe weather safety and make their own storm kit in a free pillow case they will get to decorate.

Forecasters from the National Weather Service (NWS) office that serves the South Plains area will provide Skywarn Storm Spotter Training at 1 p.m. and Tornado/Severe Weather Safety talks at 11 a.m. and 3 p.m. NWS mascot Owlie the Safety Owl will be available to meet and take photographs with children.

“I expect families and citizens alike to have a great time learning valuable weather safety information at this event,” Morris said. “We cannot wait to share our knowledge to better prepare our community for potentially dangerous severe weather this spring and summer. We hope everyone will come out and learn something new that could change their lives for the better when the situation arises.”

Special OMNI Theater screenings of the film “Tornado Alley” also will be featured in celebration of the day's events. “Tornado Alley” lets audiences ride along with tornado researchers and chasers and get closer to real tornadoes than most would ever dare.

In addition to the student AMS chapter, other sponsors are KCBD-TV, the National Weather Service and the Science Spectrum.