Derek Van Dam Earns New AMS
Certified Broadcast Meteorologist Designation
Derek van Dam of eNews Channel (South Africa) has earned the American Meteorological Society’s Certified Broadcast Meteorologist (CBM) designation, a professional recognition of the quality of his weather broadcasts. Derek is the first broadcast meteorologist in South Africa to earn the new designation. Among radio and television meteorologists, the CBM designation is sought as a mark of distinction and recognition.
The AMS grants the CBM designation to broadcast meteorologists who meet established criteria for scientific competence and effective communication skills in their weather presentations. The CBM is a new program, launched in January 2005 as an upgrade to the Society’s Seal of Approval program.
“The Society’s Certified Broadcast Meteorologist designation clearly recognizes that the holders have the educational background and have been tested in their knowledge and communication of the sciences needed to be an effective broadcast meteorologist,” said AMS Executive Director Keith Seitter. “The general public can have added confidence in the quality and reliability of weather presentations made by broadcast meteorologists approved by the Society.”
Derek Van Dam studied at Central Michigan University and graduated with a B.S. in Meteorology and Broadcast and Cinematic Arts as well as a minor in Mathematics. Derek was one of the first person’s to graduate from CMU’s newly accredited Meteorology program. Even before finishing his studies, Derek was asked to present his broadcasting skills as the weekend Meteorologist for WEYI in Michigan. After graduating he was promoted to the M-F morning meteorologist position where he worked to perfect his skills. After spending 3 ½ years at WEYI, Derek’s Philanthropic interests brought him to Africa, where he now resides and is the Head of Weather/Chief Meteorologist for an International 24-hour news and Weather Channel that covers the Continent. Derek was recently voted by local South African’s as the Countries Best Newcomer. Derek’s interests include Philanthropy, soccer, rock-climbing and guitar.
To earn the CBM, broadcasters must hold a degree in meteorology or equivalent from an accredited college or university, pass a rigorous written examination, and have their on-air work reviewed to assess technical competence, informational value, explanatory value, and communication skills.
In addition to the initial educational and test requirements, CBMs have to earn professional development points in order to maintain their certification. These points can be earned by attending scientific seminars or meetings and similar activities.
The AMS is the nation’s largest professional society for those in the atmospheric and related sciences. The Society, founded in 1919, has more than 11,000 members around the world.
For more information on the Certified Broadcast Meteorologist (CBM) Program, go to http://www.ametsoc.org/amscert/index.html