Meteorologist Dr Michael Ventrice Meteorological Scientist at The Weather Company
Dr. Michael Ventrice is a Meteorological Scientist and Software Engineer at The Weather Company, an IBM Business. The Weather Company helps millions of consumers and businesses make informed decisions based on weather data. You may be familiar with Weather.com or Weather Underground – all part of The Weather Company. Michael is also the lead sub-seasonal (Week 3-5) forecaster at the company. He received his Ph.D. at the University at Albany, focused in tropical meteorology and is considered an expert in global circulation. Due to the nature of his background, Dr. Ventrice is often quoted in various media outlets periodically appears on TV or recorded videos on weather.com during big weather events.
Dr. Ventrice is a member of the AMS and was the 2018 Chair for the AMS Board for Private Sector Meteorologists.
What was your most memorable weather event?
Every meteorologist has some memorable weather impact in their life that directed them towards a career involving some component of weather. My story is Hurricane Bob, 1991. I grew up on Long Island, NY and experienced the landfall of Hurricane Bob. While this was just a Category-1 Hurricane, it was strong enough to get my attention. I knew from that point forward in time, I wanted to study tropical meteorology and understand what causes hurricane formation. Hurricane Bob was the foundation of my passion and it eventually led to my PhD in tropical meteorology, which focused on Atlantic tropical cyclogenesis mechanisms and predictability at intraseasonal timescales.
What is your favourite and least favourite type of weather?
On a day to day basis, my most favorite weather day is warm sunny days with low humidity. I do a lot of outdoor activities and do not handle cold temperatures, or hot and humid days all that well. But when it comes to extreme weather, there’s nothing like a strong thunderstorm in the summer or blizzard during the Winter. Living in Boston, MA in the U.S., I get to experience all types of weather. I actually met my wife in a rare tornado warning in Boston.
If you weren't a meteorologist what would you most like to be?
I actually wanted to become a veterinarian when I was a kid. I volunteered a couple years working in a veterinarian’s office while I was in high school. Unfortunately, I was the guy who held the animals down when they were put to sleep. Talk about a dramatic experience. I’d often go home after working a summer’s day at this veterinarian’s office and turn on the Weather Channel to see what was going on in the tropics. It just made sense to bail on the veterinarian path and to start the journey into meteorology.
From a purely meteorological point of view, where would you most like to live?
Anywhere with seasons that can get i) severe thunderstorms ii) blizzards iii) hurricanes. I love living in the northeastern U.S. because this it is a mecca for all sorts of weather!