Two months into his first year, Maison DeJesus ’22 was talking with meteorologists at a professional conference at Stowe resort. As a climate change science major, the valuable networking opportunities he had at the American Meteorological Society conference potentially opened doors to internships for him.
He learned about new technologies and new jobs in the field and talked with the state climatologist of his home state of New Jersey. “It prepared me for what the future’s going to look like,” Maison said. “It was awesome.”
Nationally Recognized Atmospheric Sciences Program
Maison, from Howell, New Jersey, chose the Lyndon campus because of the strength of its nationally known atmospheric sciences department. He was impressed with the weather center, observation deck, and computer rooms used by students in the department.
When he visited the campus as a high school student, “The facilities, study options, teachers, and staff, in general, were very impressive. All the opportunities and the job placement rate of students getting work out of college looked good,” Maison said.
The Faculty is Committed to Student Success
One of the best parts of Maison’s experience is the personal connections he has with faculty and other students.
“Here, you know everyone in your classes, and you know all your professors just like they’re friends of yours. It’s pretty incredible,” he said.
The faculty support and small classes help students excel. “There’s a lot of one-on-one with professors,” he said. “If you don’t understand something, you can meet with them, and they’ll explain it. The amount of help they offer is great.”
Building Skills Through Involvement in Student Groups
Maison shares his passion for meteorology and climate change science outside the classroom, too. He’s involved with the student chapter of the American Meteorological Society, which hosts the annual Northeastern Storm Conference, the largest such student-run event in the country.
He also is a member of the campus Climate Consensus group, which educates kids and others in the general public about climate change science. “Through Climate Consensus, I’ve learned how to talk to different ages and relay the message of the seriousness of climate change. People ask really great questions,” said Maison, who spoke at a climate change rally at Vermont’s Statehouse in Montpelier.
The opportunities for public interaction through NVU tie in with Maison’s career plan to work for a climate advocacy group such as 350Vermont, which educates about local issues. “I want to be the communicator between the science and the people,” he said.