Amanda Schaffer Gindhart

Amanda Schaffer Gindhart

  • 2009 BS - Meteorology, Penn State
  • 2013 MS - Information Systems & Financial Management, University of Maryland University College
  • Configuration Analyst - MDA Information Systems LLC
  • Computer Systems Engineer II/Meteorologist - Raytheon

Biography:

I am proud to say I'm a Penn State Meteorologist. Currently, I'm a Configuration Analyst at MDA working with their IT and Software Development departments. Before MDA, I worked on the AWIPS Contract at Raytheon's Network Control Facility. Our main responsibilities were the IT Help Desk for the National Weather Service. 

Since childhood, I was always fascinated with the weather. My brother was born in Hurricane Andrew in Houston, TX and while watching the TV coverage of that storm, I was determined to become a Meteorologist. After I received my acceptance letter to Penn State, an EF-3 tornado wiped through our town and killed over two dozen people. At that point, I knew I had to attend a school that would provide the knowledge for Severe Weather storm prediction where I could help my community be more prepared for Severe Weather season. I told my parents only Penn State could offer this education, and immediately accepted my letter. This was the best decision I ever made and I am glad I chose Penn State Meteorology over all the other Meteorology programs.

I am forever grateful of my former professor Dr. Clothiaux, because if it wasn't for his Meteorology 473 class, I would've never pursued a career in Information Systems. Even though my focus at Penn State was Forecasting and Weather Communications, his class intrigued me the most. After Penn State, I applied to a job for Raytheon on the Dept's Job page, not knowing what that meant for my future career. After starting at Raytheon, I immediately knew that the IT side of Meteorology was more appealing than anything else.  Soon after, I started my masters program at University of Maryland University College, which lead to my current job at MDA.

The Meteorology Program at Penn State was a perfect fit for me, and I continue to tell everyone how happy I am that I chose Penn State. 

In the Washington DC Metro area, I am an active member of the local Penn State Alumni Association Chapter, where I participate on several of their sports teams.