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July 20, 2018

ATS team wins top prize in North American forecasting competition

Graduate students, researchers and faculty in CSU’s Department of Atmospheric Science took home the team trophy for the top combined weather forecast score for the 2017-18 season of the WxChallenge, the North American collegiate weather forecasting competition comprised of 1,800 participants from 62 meteorology programs.

During the 20-week contest season, participants apply their knowledge of atmospheric processes and interpretation of numerical weather guidance to predict the daily maximum and minimum temperatures, accumulated precipitation, and maximum sustained wind speeds for designated cities across the U.S. The CSU team managed to out-forecast 40 other teams for the season team trophy, placed first in the two-week 12-team playoff round, had eight members qualify for the individual tournament, and won five individual forecaster trophies.

While this is the first season for CSU to take home the top prize, the team has historically done well in the competition. They placed second overall in 2016-17 with eight individual forecaster trophies. The team is looking forward to the start of the 2018-19 contest season this fall and a chance to defend their title as North America’s top collegiate weather forecasters.

2017-18 individual forecaster trophy winners

2017-18 CSU team members

Photo at top: Front row: Cory Baggett, Russ Schumacher and Faith Groff; back row: Erik Nielsen, Kyle Nardi, Sam Childs, Greg Herman, Chris Slocum and Zach Bruick.