Senior Spotlight: Kaitlin Frost
The School of Meteorology is extremely proud of the students we graduate each year, knowing that OU Meteorology alumni go on to do amazing things. For the last few weeks, we’ve been publishing stories of our students who are excited about upcoming jobs, graduate school placements, or overcoming hardships to reach where they are today. Our next senior in the spotlight is Kaitlin Frost!
Kaitlin is originally from Oklahoma City and told us that she’s wanted to be a meteorologist since she “was a little girl”. This interest first developed after surviving the May 3, 1999 tornadic outbreak with her father, and that she “really had no idea you could actually go to school for it until[…]6th grade!” Later, when she learned about the OU School of Meteorology, she knew exactly where she wanted to be.
According to Kaitlin, she didn’t have an early affinity for math and science, but knew that they were a necessary part of her major. She says “I struggled with math courses when I came to OU, and I was afraid that my dream would come to an end because I couldn’t do the math. I started to seek out help from my more mathematically-talented peers and would work late into the night after work studying as much as I could. Between my full-time job and juggling school, it has been an incredible journey to watch myself grow academically and mentally as a person.” Kaitlin mentioned that there were some detractors who told her that she should consider a change of major, because they assumed she “didn’t have the analytical and mathematical skills required to be a meteorologist” and that she is “glad to say [she] proved them wrong.” This semester, Dr. Howard Bluestein, someone Kaitlin says she has “looked up to [her] entire life and watched on countless documentaries” is serving as her Capstone Research Mentor. Kaitlin told us that the experience has “been a dream come true”, and that she and her team are extremely pleased with the work and hope to publish and/or present it at a conference.
We also asked Kaitlin what advice she would have for those who are in a similar situation, and she said that first and foremost, students should “never let anyone tell you that you can’t do something.” (emphasis hers). She also told us:”I never thought in a million years I would be at the best School of Meteorology in the nation, yet here I am leaving with a Bachelor of Science in Meteorology! If you keep listening to those people, sometimes you start to believe it. It was tough to watch all my peers grasping material so quickly, and I became very discouraged. I am a slow learner, and hey that is okay!” Kaitlin encourages others to see struggles as strengths: “I see myself struggling as me getting more time with my professor, more time to get in depth with the material, and the struggle is just a challenge for me to overcome. ”
Furthermore, Kaitlin advises students to never be afraid to ask for help. “Your teachers, your tutors, that is what they are here for! Swallow that pride, and ask for help when you are struggling.” Lastly, she shared that “passion is what has helped fuel me through the late nights and the days where I just wanted to give up…That fire in my soul is what lead me to OU, and has kept me here to graduate! To those students out there struggling: Don’t give up just because it’s hard. It’s hard because it means something!”
“I’m finishing my degree with offers from the United States Air Force and pathways into private sector meteorology. I will be receiving a Bachelors of Science in Meteorology with a minor in Geographic Information Systems, and I could not be more proud to live my childhood dream.” Congratulations, Kaitlin! We’re happy to see that all of your hard work has paid off, and we look forward to seeing you take that same passion into the next part of your journey.
Kaitlin provided us with some pictures of her journey from May 3, 1999 to May 12, 2018 – see below!