Student Spotlight: Madilynn Seiler
Madilynn Seiler is an undergraduate meteorology student in the Department of Earth, Ocean and Atmospheric Science, part of the College of Arts and Sciences.
Tell us about your academic pursuits and what you enjoy most about your studies.
I am from St. Louis, Mo., and am a junior pursuing my degree in meteorology. I am primarily interested in solar radiation and atmospheric chemistry, and I am also working towards minors in mathematics and computer science. I love the faculty and staff in my department: Every day they inspire me to ask questions, propose answers, and to have fun while doing it. This year has been especially enjoyable as I am now taking Atmospheric Physics, the first of the three upper-level meteorology courses. I also have the privilege of studying under Werner A. and Shirley B. Baum Assistant Professor Christopher Holmes this year in his elective graduate course, Atmospheric Composition, Chemistry, and Climate.
You were recently named to the Torchbearer 100, which recognizes FSU’s exceptional student leaders who have impacted the FSU experience through significant, positive contributions. What does this mean to you?
My meteorology advisor Shel McGuire approached me one day after class and told me that she was going to recommend me as a candidate because of my contributions to the meteorology department. What an honor! I was chosen by the Department of Student Affairs to be a part of the 100 and am so thankful to my advisers and professors for recognizing my work and the accomplishments of all the Torchbearers. It keeps students like me motivated and engaged.
I know that you’re a Freshman Interest Group leader and you are also the president of your sorority. Share some details about your leadership roles and how these have contributed to your academic experience.
I knew being a FIG leader was something I wanted to do as soon as I heard about it. I am from Missouri and did not know anyone when I came to Tallahassee my freshman year. Because the first year is spent more on general education and we did not have many meteorology courses, I wasn’t able to meet a lot of my fellow majors. I almost thought I was the only meteorology student on campus! Once my major-related classes started sophomore year, I realized how great our EOAS community is and immersed myself, but a small part of me wished I had known about the events, clubs, and other activities much sooner.
Being a FIG leader for 18 STEM major freshman allowed me give them a jumpstart on their own experience and connect them with amazing opportunities to get involved as a freshman. They learned that college life outside of the classroom is just as (if not, more) important than life in the classroom and that making connections and gaining experience through events and clubs is so beneficial to overall academic success. It was extremely rewarding to see my students step outside their comfort zones and into new hobbies and projects. By the end of the year, I realized I may have learned more from them than they learned from me. My students encouraged me as a teacher, student and friend. It was an experience I will always cherish.
As president of the Delta Zeta sorority from March through December 2019, I was responsible for the well-being and functions of a 200-plus member organization including running and assisting with events philanthropy events and formal recruitment, liaising between my chapter and the National Board, and representing the Greek community in a positive light on campus and to the Tallahassee community. The main goal that I wished to accomplish during my time as president was helping my members understand their worth and the true meaning of what it means to be a part of something bigger than yourself. My sorority gave me so much during my time at Florida State and I wanted to do my part and give others the same amazing experience.
You are also involved in the FSU Weather show. Describe your involvement and experiences.
Last fall I became involved in the student-run FSU Weather broadcasting show. On the show, I worked as a broadcaster, participating in solo segments presenting weather forecasts against the green screen and in desk segments with a co-anchor. The show is such an educational experience – we make forecasts and predictions about real weather events using all of the skills and knowledge we gain in the classroom. It also helps with public speaking and communication skills. And, it allows us weather nerds to geek out in a really cool way.
What are you up to when you’re not in the classroom or working on FSU Weather?
I have wanted to be a meteorologist since the I was 9 years old and am absolutely obsessed with weather, so it’s all weather, all the time for me. However, I do also love to run, discover new coffee shops around Tallahassee, play frisbee, bake and read. I love all things FSU especially the basketball and baseball seasons.