Senior Spotlight May 2021 – Tara Pettner

Senior Spotlight May 2021 – Tara Pettner

This year we are continuing our tradition of Senior Spotlights! For everyone, 2020 and 2021 have been challenging years, but we want to highlight our amazing seniors for preserving through these difficult times.

Meet Tara Pettner! She is from Darlington, Pennsylvania. Tara says weather has fascinated her from an early age.

“I was always fascinated by weather and watched the Weather Channel all the time,” Tara said. “There was no defining moment when I realized it was what I wanted to study. I just always knew, even from a young age.”

Her love of meteorology drew her to Norman, where she has spent her time getting involed in a variety of different organizations, including the Oklahoma Weather Lab and SCAN. She was even a shift leader for OWL one semester.

Tara says it was difficult to find a balance when it came to academics and mental health.

“Meteorology classes are difficult, and I think the toughest part about college is learning to balance your time in a way that allows you to do well in classes but also take care of your mental and physical health,” she said. “It can be very easy to get overwhelmed in this program, so learning what worked for me was very important.”

Tara says her favorite part of her college career was getting the opportunity to study abroad last spring. She spent the 2020 spring semester in England, where she met new people from different cultures.

After graduation, Tara will be working as a Natural Catastrophe Summer Intern for SCOR Reinsurance before returning to OU for one more year to complete my MBA as a part of the Meteorology/MBA accelerated degree. After that, she hopes to find a job in the private sector.

Congratulations, Tara! The School of Meteorology is excited to see all you do in the future!