Friday, October 26, 2012


Middleton's Sign Greets Guest Reed Timmer
Reed Timmer of Discovery's Storm Chasers television show roused a packed assembly room full of Middleton High School students yesterday with videos and stories of his work as a storm chaser and a message about the value of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics) education. 

Timmer was brought to Middleton thanks to a grant from the J.A. and Kathryn Albertson Foundation and Students Come First. Students Come First works to create equal access and opportunity for all students by integrating more technology and digital resources into the classroom.

Timmer and Middleton Students Spot a Storm

As Discovery Education's chief meteorologist and a fixture on the Storm Chasers show, Timmer can often be seen heading the wrong direction when a tornado is coming. Hunkered in a custom-modified vehicle, spikes sunk into the ground, Timmer and his storm chaser team intercept tornadoes to collect scientific data and capture high definition video to help scientists document and better understand these powerful storms.

For Timmer, the job is a dream come true. A lifelong science enthusiast, Timmer turned his passion into a career. But it wasn't always this way.

Reed Timmer shared with the Middleton High School assembly that his passion for science and learning started at an early age. It wasn't always "cool," laughed Timmer, as he shared the fact that he collected bugs until he was sixteen, but he loved learning about science and the world we live in.

Timmer started chasing storms long before he thought it might become a lucrative career. He and his friends would chase storms in his $500 vehicle. Eventually, he was able to buy an SUV, and after the first season of Storm Chasers was a hit, he was able to begin creating the "Dominator" vehicles.

Timmer Addresses a Full Auditorium

Despite the distraction and success of the Storm Chasers show and all the hands-on learning that has come with it, Reed Timmer has continued to pursue learning inside the classroom as well. He is currently pursuing his Ph.D.

The students of Middleton High School were excellent hosts, gifting Timmer a Middleton Vikings football sweatshirt and listening intently as he shared his story. Timmer was a gracious guest as well, signing autographs and taking pictures with students, as well as sitting for an interview with Middleton High School's video production team.

Middleton's Video Production Class Interviews Their Guest

When asked about his success thus far and his recommendations for students seeking careers in STEM, Timmer had some simple advice: "Follow your passion. Do what you love. Practice. Study. Learn." 


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