Florida State meteorologists produce weathercasts five nights a week for FSU's cable Channel 4. Each night several weathercasters demonstrate their talents in a weathercast that is transmitted to the FSU Broadcast Center via a fiber optic link. The show is broadcast live at 6:30pm every weeknight and rebroadcast at 11:00pm. The show is a half-hour long during the school year and 15 minutes long during the summer.
Of course, just being in the meteorology program at Florida State does not guarantee a spot on Channel 4. Students must take the weathercasting course for at least one semester before being given the opportunity to go on-air. Occasionally, a talented student progresses quickly enough to earn a spot as an on-camera meteorologist before the end of his or her first semester of the weathercasting course.
Currently, FSU Weather can be seen in Tallahassee as well as all of Leon and Wakulla Counties and eastern Gadsden County in the local Comcast service area.
During September 1998, weathercasting students provided information on Hurricane Earl as it headed toward the Florida panhandle. We began with 90-second updates each hour during the evening before landfall. The next afternoon, WFSU/WFSG-TV replaced their regular programming with non-stop weather information as the hurricane neared the viewing area. Weathercasting students provided live 5-10 minute weather updates each half hour. During the remainder of the half hour, audio was supplied by from WFSU-FM and NOAA Weather Radio, and weathercasting students supplied video in the form of radar and text on hurricane preparedness.
We provided 16 hours of coverage for WFSU including weather updates, school closings, shelter availability, hurricane safety tips, and outdoor reports as the brunt of the storm was upon us. It took a total team effort from the weathercasters at Florida State and without their focused determination and strength, such coverage would not have been possible.