St. Thomas Aquinas College (STAC) XLAB students built an outdoor weather station this past fall to provide data to the STAC community and local weather services. They also created a webpage and social media presence to display this data and raise awareness about weather changes and environmental stewardship.
Since the beginning of the fall 2021 semester, STAC XLAB students have been assembling the weather station and have been active on social media promoting the weather station with Build-It-Yourself videos for the local community. Dean of the School of STEM, Dr. Bianca Wentzell, explains, “We’re hoping that this project will demonstrate to others that anyone can construct a weather station and communicate its data. We also want to convey the importance of understanding weather patterns that affect our everyday lives and how they are impacted by global climate change.” With this in mind, the XLAB team has been hard at work assembling the equipment necessary to make this possible. The real-time weather report can be accessed at https://wostac.stacxlab.com/
Students have shown firm determination to overcome challenges posed by the setup of the weather station. History professor Dr. Robert Ingoglia states, “Establishing a weather station is dependent on coordinating two key components: one hardware (the physical station), and the other digital (software interface for data collection and website). The students have risen admirably to the challenges posed by each part. The physical station is currently functioning well and the task at hand is integrating it with the software components and the website.”
STAC XLAB students from different fields of study have each worked together cohesively to make the weather station function. During the fall semester, students also realized the importance of having accessible weather data. XLAB team member Brittany Lionarons states, “This Weather Station is an amazing opportunity for students and professors from different fields to work together on a fun and educational project. Weather is something extremely important, especially today with global warming. We hope this project will shine a light on the study of weather and the issues of global warming.”
Students have invested a lot of time and effort into making this weather station productive and providing its data to the local community. XLAB team member Brianna Randazzo reflects, “The Weather Station has been an amazing experience and such a great opportunity to be a part of! Weather is something that affects everyone daily, so creating a weather station is a tremendous benefit to STAC and the surrounding community, especially with all the information that it transmits. It has been a lot of fun working with all the team members towards something that will make a difference to everyone at STAC! I’ve learned so much so far and can’t wait to see what everyone thinks!”