Tropical Storm Isaac
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Denise Isaac

Denise Isaac
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After graduating from Florida State University in 2005 with a bachelor's of science degree in meteorology and minors in math and communications, Denise Isaac started her on-air career as a broadcast meteorologist at WZDC in Washington DC. Eventually Isaac moved north to broadcast for WeatherNation in Excelsior, Minnesota, before coming to WSCV-Miami, where she produced, forecasted, and broadcasted daily weather segments, and wrote and produced hurricane packages during the hurricane season. Isaac is a member of the American Meteorological Society, and recently left her post at Telemundo in Miami to pursue English broadcasting.

What kinds of math, science, engineering, or technology classes did you need to take in school to prepare for your current career?

Denise Isaac: Everything from algebra to engineering math. Also chemistry and physics.

How are weather forecasts created?

DI: I go through different weather models to look at how the day will shape up. In South Florida, you focus on the wind direction and cloud cover, makes a HUGE difference.

When determining a weather forecast, what kinds of data are needed?

DI: Temperature, dew point, wind direction and speed, synoptic feature that is currently in play.

How do computers factor into creating these forecasts? How would these forecasts be created prior to today’s more sophisticated technology?

DI: They used papers and color pencils before. Do we even use those nowadays on a regular basis??!

What would you say has been your proudest accomplishment on the job, or your favorite part of the job?

DI: To receive a national Emmy in 2014 and to prove that I can talk about weather but that I can also report on sports and be a Jackie of all trades.

Is there a specific breakthrough or event in your field’s history that stands out to you as a milestone? Why would you say it is so important?

DI: The coverage of my first tropical storm that coincidentally [was named] “Isaac,” my last name. It was my 2nd year on the job and viewers wrote in to say how they appreciated my information and that I performed like a hurricane expert on air. Most recently, during an active “El Niño” period this winter, I was able to go on air live with the development of tornadoes in the region. A first for me, as all I’ve always focused on was tropical meteorology. It was another job well done and well explained.

 

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