Ryan Hoke of Fisherville
is one semester closer to realizing his dream of becoming a weatherman.
The Manual High School
graduate just finished his first semester at Mississippi State
University's program in broadcast meteorology.
And, in true Hoke style,
he found a way to get ahead.
Hoke, 19, had already
been making weather forecasts on his Web site, Ryan Weather,
and his blog, ryanweather.blogspot.com, for
several years before he moved to college.
program recognized his initiative and struck a deal with him that
allows him studio time. He does graphic design for the department, and
in turn, he gets two hours of credit, and one hour per week in the
school's professional-quality studio to tape for his blog and Web site.
Usually, students don't get in front of the cameras until their junior
“They took my motivation
and ran with it,” he said.
was also recently tapped by Channel 5 in Starkville to help cover the
town's Christmas parade. He did weather updates and interviews with
summer, Hoke was one of six high school graduates to be named a
Distinguished Scholar at Mississippi State, one of the school's most
prestigious scholarships. The award provides nearly $60,000 for Hoke's
education, including free room and board in the campus residence halls,
a one-time $1,500 educational enrichment scholarship for study abroad,
internships or other pursuits and an undergraduate research fellowship
award valued at $4,000 over two summers.
won the James
E. Casey Scholarship and the Kentucky House of Representatives'
Academic Achievement Award.
intends to work again this summer for Storm Chasing Adventure Tours, a
company that takes customers on treks in search of powerful
thunderstorms through Tornado Alley. He's volunteered with the company
in previous summers and redesigned the company's Web site.
Hoke said he's
learned a tremendous amount and gained valuable experience in just the
few months he's been at college.
“It's the perfect
place for me,” he said.
King can be reached at (502) 582-4248.