Nicole Mitchell
On-Air Meteorologist with KSTP-TV Minneapolis/St Paul
Hurricane Hunter, USAF Reserve

Nicole Mitchell Meteorologist

Synopsis of Job: What do you do?

For television I forecast the weather, then present it on television. For the military, I’m with a group called the “Hurricane Hunters,” and we fly into tropical weather and collect data from inside storms that then goes into the forecasts and modeling of the systems.

Impact of Profession:  How does a your job/career make a difference in the world?

It’s very gratifying, because we literally save lives. From warning people of things like dangerous tornadoes, to getting critical data about a hurricane, there is a very real impact to human safety.

Typical employers and/or industries: (Government, private sector, public sector, geographic areas, etc)

Television is what everyone thinks of, but it is actually only a small percentage. There are military forecasters, researchers at universities and other organizations, people who work for the government such as the National Weather Service, and people who work for private companies impacted by the weather. For example, many airlines employ their own meteorologists because their business operations are greatly impacted by weather.

Educational Qualifications – What do you typically need to enter and/or be successful in this career?

A 4yr Bachelor of Science in Meteorology or something related (eg: atmospheric sciences). I think the outlook for this career is good. People are always going to be interested in weather.

What do you think youth should do to prepare for a career like this?

A good foundation in science and math are important. Once you get into college, there are great internship opportunities at many weather organizations.

Please share any personal reflection on this career.

It’s been a wonderful career for me. I love connecting with people in my TV career, and getting them the weather information that impact their lives. And Hurricane Hunting allows me to serve my country, while making a critical difference in the forecasting for major storms. I also get to be right inside some incredible weather events, which is an amazing experience!