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Affiliation: 
Pennsylvania State University
Title: 
Associate Professor
Department: 
Department of Meteorology and EMS Environment Institute
Expertise: 
Inter-annual tropical variability, tropical cyclones

Biography

Evans' background in applied mathematics _ particularly, geophysical fluid dynamics _ led to her interest in teaching dynamics classes at all levels. Interpretation and manipulation of the equations provides a sound basis from which to understand and forecast the atmosphere. Her love of tropical meteorology was the impetus for teaching both that class and climate modeling. Tropical storms (from thunderheads to hurricanes) have fascinated Evans since Cyclone Tracy devastated Darwin on Christmas Day in 1974. We can draw upon some basic concepts for understanding of the role of the tropics in the global climate system. Variations in the tropics (whether individual storms, seasonal or longer) can impact higher latitude weather, thus having implications for forecasting all around the globe. Although she stumbled across meteorology while studying mathematics, her teaching at Penn State has inspired her to relate the equations more to weather forecasting. This drew Evans to teaching numerical weather prediction: numerical models are the cornerstone of modern forecasting, yet meteorologists can become formally qualified without any understanding of the complexities (and sometimes the extreme simplifications) of these models. Evans teaching interests also include mentoring of independent research. Achievements of her undergraduate students include journal articles, conference presentations, AMS website contributions, development of online documentation for Navy forecasting software, Honors theses and more. She regularly offer graduate seminar courses.