NCEP Visiting Scientist Program

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National Centers for Environmental Prediction

Managed by the Cooperative Programs for the
Advancement of Earth System Science (CPAESS) at UCAR

Applications accepted anytime and are reviewed on a rolling basis.

The National Oceanic Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) National Centers for Environmental Prediction (NCEP) and CPAESS announce a Visiting Scientist Program that will provide opportunities for scientists in the academic community, government laboratories, and the private sector to interact with colleagues at NCEP.

NCEP delivers national and global weather, water, climate and space weather guidance, forecasts, warnings and analyses to a broad range of users and partners. These products and services respond to user needs to protect life and property, enhance the nation's economy, and support the nation's growing need for environmental information.

This program offers an opportunity for the research community to be fully integrated within a national scale operational environment for discrete periods of time. Researchers integrated within “operations” will provide great benefit to NOAA research to operations (R2O) transition activities, bringing new concepts, tools, processes, and innovation to the conduct of “operations” more efficiently. Their presence will enhance ongoing activities and catalyze new efforts at several of the onsite test-beds while promoting an environment ripe for innovation. By immersing visiting scientists in the NCEP operational infrastructure, they can carry valuable insights and capabilities back to their home institutions, thereby facilitating O2R support.

Visiting appointments will be made at the NCEP locations listed below:

  • Aviation Weather Center (Kansas City, MO)
  • Climate Prediction Center (College Park, MD)
  • Environmental Modeling Center (College Park, MD)
  • National Hurricane Center (Miami, FL)
  • NCEP Central Operations (College Park, MD)
  • Ocean Prediction Center (College Park, MD)
  • Storm Prediction Center (Norman, OK)
  • Space Weather Prediction Center (Boulder, CO)
  • Weather Prediction Center (College Park, MD)

Suggested Collaboration Subjects

Please note that an important criterion for the funding is that the work be truly collaborative. Examples of projects include the following:

  • Activities that improve understanding of forecasting problems
  • Activities that address some critical aspect of operational model development
  • Incorporation of social science knowledge and practices to communicate forecast uncertainty
  • Activities that will increase university research community’s awareness of operational problems and needs
  • Activities that will create new data analysis techniques with wide application and usefulness in operational forecasting
  • Activities that facilitate or improve the use of new observing systems

Types of Appointments

Openings include positions for Visiting Scientists and Graduate Students.

Visiting Scientists: The program places a special emphasis on short-term visits (e.g., one week to a few months) by experienced research scientists from academia, government laboratories, or the private sector. Such visits will permit interested scientists to interact both with model developers and diagnosticians in the Environmental Modeling Center and with forecasters and technique developers in the various service centers of NCEP. Proposed visits that offer the potential for improving the utility of successful research projects in the operational framework are of particular interest to NCEP, but visitors whose interest is principally on some critical aspect of model or tool development are also strongly encouraged to apply.

Graduate Students: Graduate students interested in working on a thesis topic specifically relevant to the efforts of the various service centers are encouraged to apply with the appropriate center. Such student participation will require a close collaboration between NCEP and the student home institution, specifically the thesis advisor. Applications for graduate students should be initiated by a sponsoring scientist.

All participants in this program will be UCAR visitors. Travel and local living costs will be covered and administered by the UCAR Cooperative Programs for the Advancement of Earth System Science (CPAESS) office.

How to Apply

There is no application form or deadline for applications. Applications are reviewed throughout the year as they are received. Qualified scientists are encouraged to apply to this program by submitting the following as a single *.pdf attachment:

1. A cover letter stating the name of this program and the specific center(s) to which the applicant is applying. The letter (2 page maximum) should include:

  • the proposed visit goals and objectives,
  • an approximate time schedule,
  • a general statement of how research interests and experience relate to the specific activities of the NCEP center.

2. Curriculum vitae (3 page maximum)

3. A two-page summary (with a specific title) of the proposed project. The summary must include the following:

  • Current area of work and what new work you would initiate in this project
  • Previous or potential collaborations with NCEP
  • A description of the work in non-technical detail
  • Specific resources you would require
  • Describe the tangible outcomes you expect from the collaboration
  • Budget of anticipated expenses
  • Timeline

4. The names and contact information of three professional references.

Applications may be sent electronically to Kendra Greb (
(UCAR cannot accept *.zip files)

CPAESS also accepts applications mailed to:

UCAR Cooperative Programs for the Advancement of Earth System Science (CPAESS)
P.O. Box 3000
Boulder, CO 80307-3000

Review Criteria

Proposals are reviewed by the NCEP Office of the Director and the appropriate NCEP Center, generally within one month of receipt. Proposals will be evaluated on the quality of the applicant's proposed goals and objectives, relevance of activity to NCEP’s strategic needs, and the availability of funds.

For More Information

Please contact:

Genene Fisher, NCEP Executive Officer ( or
Meg Austin, Senior Advisor, CPAESS (