Staff Notes Daily Announcements

Human Resources is launching a two-year phased project to review and update our performance evaluation process in response to feedback from staff through the Culture Survey and from NSF’s Site Reviews.

During January through March, HR will be gathering everyone’s input to inform the design of the new process. This will involve a series of staff information sessions, focus groups, and an organization-wide survey in mid-January.

Please mark your calendar for the information sessions taking place in January and February:

  • Mesa Lab: January 29, 1-3pm, ML-239: Damon Room
  • Mesa Lab: January 30, 3-5pm, ML-239: Damon Room  
  • FL2: January 31, 10-12pm, FL2-1001: Small Seminar Room
  • FL2: February 1, 10-12pm, FL2-1001: Small Seminar Room

Registration is required for these information sessions (see below for instructions).

Once feedback has been collected from staff and the new performance evaluation process has been designed, HR will roll this out to the early adopter groups for use during the 2018 performance evaluation process. Your President’s Council representative for your lab or program will let you know if you are involved in the early adopter group and provide further information. About 140 staff will participate in this phase of the project.

Once 2018 performance evaluations are complete, HR will gather further feedback from early adopters on the new process and make any necessary modifications ahead of the 2019 evaluation cycle. The entire organization will then adopt the new process in 2019.

We look forward to hearing your feedback so we can make improvements to the process. Questions? Please contact Lameece Erwin (

The four Staff Information Sessions are available for registration via Connect. To register please log into the Connect Website:

  • Select the link: "View the EOD Training Calendar and Register for Courses"
  • Search for course: “Staff Information Session: How to Get Involved - Performance Evaluation Project”
  • Select the link: "Click here to view Dates and Register"
  • Register based on date preference

Posted by Katrina Kiefer at ext. 2135,

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Please join us for the second ASP Thompson Lecture of 2018.

This seminar will feature Doctor Jonathan E. Martin from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, Dept. of Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences.

It could well be argued that modern synoptic-dynamic meteorology was christened by three intellectual advances; 1) the adoption of isobaric coordinates as a means of simplifying the equation of continuity, 2) the development of the quasi-geostrophic system of equations to approximate and simplify the equations of motion, and 3) the formulation of an omega equation that could both qualitatively and quantitatively diagnose regions of upward and downward vertical motions at the cyclone scale as well as explain the ubiquity of the transverse circulations at fronts.  Though many eminent thinkers in our field contributed to these developments in the two decades after WW II, all three of them originated before and during the war from aspects of the work of a single scientist – Reginald C. Sutcliffe.

In this talk I will share the experiences I had over the past three years chasing the scientific and personal history of this giant in the field.  His life included moments that testify to the great power of inspirational teachers, the horror and waste of war, the inevitable momentum of good ideas and the necessity of broad vision in both human and scientific affairs that leads to the creation of important and successful institutions.  The exhilarating adventures and discoveries I was fortunate enough to enjoy in my sabbatical year will serve as the backdrop for my account of a journey into biographical research.  I hope to relate a number of interesting stories from Sutcliffe’s impactful and interesting life as well as from my personal pursuit of his history.

This seminar will begin promptly at 1:00 pm., January 18th in the Mesa Lab Main Seminar Room, refreshments will be provided beforehand.

Posted by Scott Briggs at ext. 1607,

Tuesday, January 16, 2018 to Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Please join us for the first ASP Thompson Lecture of 2018.

This seminar will feature Doctor Jonathan E. Martin from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, Dept. of Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences.

A partition of the geostrophic vorticity into shear and curvature components is employed to consider the influence of differential vorticity advection on the development of upper level jet-front systems in northwesterly flow.  The analysis reveals that negative geostrophic shear vorticity advection by the thermal wind, inextricably coincident with regions of geostrophic cold air advection in cyclonic shear, forces subsidence that is distributed in narrow, quasi-linear, frontal-scale bands aligned along the warm edge of the upper baroclinic zone.  This component of the quasi-geostrophic (QG) subsidence makes the largest contribution to upper frontogenetical tilting.  Since QG omega forced by geostrophic vorticity advection is of the shearwise variety, the analysis shows that the traditional emphasis on the role of laterally displaced transverse circulations is an incomplete description of the upper frontogenetic tilting that arises is such environments.  In fact, the results suggest that Mudrick’s emphasis on negative vorticity advection increasing with height combined with Shapiro’s insight regarding the lateral displacement of frontogenetic transverse circulations offers the most comprehensive way to conceptualize the forcings that promote rapid upper level jet-front development in regions of geostrophic cold air advection in cyclonic shear.

This seminar will begin promptly at 11:00 am., January 17th in the Foothills Lab Large Auditorium, refreshments will be provided beforehand.

Posted by Scott Briggs at ext. 1607,

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

All staff are invited to attend one of four listening sessions with UCAR leadership on Friday, January 19. As the name implies, there will be no presentations. Instead, you will have the opportunity to provide feedback and ask questions of directors and leaders from the President’s Office, HR, and F&A on services they provide to support and enable the research in our organization.

UCAR Listening Sessions: How can UCAR leadership support you in 2018?

Friday, January 19

10:00 – 10:50 a.m.    FL-Auditorium for NCAR Foothills and Center Green personnel

11:00 – 11:50 a.m.    FL-Auditorium for UCAR F&A, HR, and President’s office personnel

1:30 – 2:25 p.m.       CG-Auditorium, Center Bay, for UCP, including offsite personnel via webcast

3:00 – 3:55 p.m.       ML-Main Seminar Room for NCAR ML and offsite personnel via webcast

If you would like to submit questions ahead of these sessions, please feel free to send them to either Joanna Schmitz ( or UCAR President Antonio Busalacchi via the President’s Anonymous Suggestion Box.


Posted by Joanna Schmitz at ext. 1653,

Tuesday, January 16, 2018 to Friday, January 19, 2018

Are you interested in working with talented young scientists? Join us as a SOARS mentor for the 2018 Summer Program: May 20 - August 4.

Significant Opportunities in Atmospheric Research and Science (SOARS) is dedicated to broadening participation in the atmospheric and related sciences.  Each year, approximately 20 students spend their summers at UCAR, NOAA and our partner labs collaborating with their mentors to conduct original research. SOARS protégés are partnered with a team of mentors that includes a research mentor (or mentors), writing and computing mentors, and a coach (see more detailed descriptions below). We invite any interested UCAR/NCAR staff to get involved – no experience necessary!

For more information about mentoring, please see To sign up to be a mentor, fill out an application online at or contact Bec Batchelor at

The following is a brief overview of the mentor types and their roles.

Research Mentor: The research mentor works with the protégé on a research topic of mutual interest. On average, a project mentor spends about ten hours per week with a protégé discussing the project, guiding research, teaching scientific methods, and helping the protégé with their research paper and presentations. Research mentoring teams are welcome, especially if you have travel plans during the summer period.

Writing Mentor: A writing mentor offers one-on-one feedback to their protégé on writing and presentations. The writing mentor supplements the instruction protégés receive in their weekly scientific communications workshop and spends about two hours per week with the protégé.

Computing Mentor: The computing mentor helps the protégé learn the computing skills necessary to complete their project. Mentoring includes providing one-on-one tutoring, recommending resources and helping debug or troubleshoot code.

Coach (aka Community Mentor): Each first-year SOARS protégé is assigned a coach. The coach meets approximately once a week to help their protégé develop solutions to troubling situations by helping them define the problem, envision the way they would like things to be, and develop and implement steps to get there.

Posted by Laura Duggan at ext. 2408,

Tuesday, January 16, 2018 to Friday, March 30, 2018

Title: Incorporating Non-hydrostatic Pressure Work in Thermal Energy Conservation – Implication of Thermal and Kinetic Energy Exchange

Speaker: Jielun Sun, NCAR MMM

Tuesday, January 16, 2018 - 11:00 a.m.
Mesa Lab, Main Seminar Room

In this talk, I will revisit thermal energy conservation through total energy conservation. One important outcome of the investigation is to address the important role of kinetic and thermal energy exchange in the atmosphere as well as the oceans. Because heating/cooling of a system can induce a non-hydrostatic vertical pressure gradient, part of the kinetic energy change is contributed by the work done through this internally-generated non-hydrostatic vertical pressure gradient. Constrained by total energy conservation, the energy available for the internal energy change has to be compensated for the amount of the external thermal work done to the kinetic energy change. This thermal and kinetic energy exchange is included in kinetic energy conservation derived from momentum conservation, however, is missed in the traditional thermal energy conservation equation. I will use observations in the atmospheric boundary layer and numerical results from a one-dimensional model to confirm the role of this extra term in the thermal energy conservation equation. The new understanding may provide explanation for simulated air temperature biases in the atmosphere and observed dissimilarity between temperature and water vapor.

Posted by Barbara Middlebrook at ext. 1366,

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

The Early Career Scientist Assembly is pleased to announce that we are soliciting applications for VISITOR funds for FY2018. ECSA members who would like to bring a visitor to NCAR for a collaborative visit may apply for these limited funds.

These visits have the goals of enhancing partnerships with other public and private institutions, and furthering the science done by early career scientists here at NCAR. These funds are available to all ECSA members. The length of the visit should be appropriate for the purpose, and awards will be limited to $5000. If funding is awarded, you will be required to write a 1-page summary about the visit and what was achieved as a result. Also, depending on the length/purpose of the visit, the ECSA may request your visitor give a seminar.

Please visit the ECSA visitor funds web page for more information, and a link to the online application. 

For questions, please contact Rachel McCrary, Chair of the ECSA Steering Committee:, x2482
Or Diana Zucco in the ASP office:, x1851

Posted by Diana Zucco at ext. 1851,

Tuesday, January 16, 2018 to Friday, February 2, 2018

The next free seminar presented by the Pre-Retirement Planning Institute, Inc., a non-profit organization specializing in financial planning and pre-retirement counseling services will begin on Friday, February 9.

A free seminar series presented by the Pre-Retirement Planning Institute, Inc., a non-profit organization specializing in financial planning and pre-retirement counseling services will begin on February 9. Combining elements of both financial planning and pre-retirement planning, the series is offered in five, mini-session modules. Participants can choose to attend one or all sessions depending on interest.  At the end of each session module, participants may request to schedule private, consultation services with the certified financial professionals (paid by participants).  Employee spouses/partners are welcome and encouraged to attend.  Each module session requires a minimum of 10 participants.

To enroll, access the Connect Employee Self-Service Web site using the link below, click on the "EOD Training Catalog" link.  To see all of these sessions at once, "Select Course Type" as "Informational" and click "Display".

UCAR Benefits, TIAA Retirement Planning Resources
February 9, 2018
12:00-2:00 pm MST
FL2 – 1001 and Webcast
Overview - Learn about UCAR's retirement benefits including the TIAA retirement program and how to maximize their value. 

Financial Planning & Investments
February 16, 2018
12:00-2:00 pm MST (no Webcast due to state licensing issues)
Overview - Discover the benefits of Financial Planning and different types of Investment options

Social Security & Income Protection Planning
February 23, 2018
12:00-2:00 pm MST and Webcast
Overview - Review needs of Long-term Care and Social Security Benefits

Medicare Basics
March 2, 2018
12:00-2:00 pm MST and Webcast
FL2-Room 1022 (Large Auditorium)
Overview - Gain a better understanding of Medicare, what is and isn't covered, how to register, and review various plan options.

Estate Planning and Housing/Transitions
March 9, 2018
12:00-2:00 pm MST and Webcast
Overview - Learn key elements of Estate Planning and what to expect in the work-to-retirement transition

Connect Employee Self-Service Website - EOD Catalog

Posted by Toni Wallace at ext. 8716,

Tuesday, January 16, 2018 to Saturday, March 10, 2018

Howdy! Please join SciEd as we celebrate Karen Smith-Herman’s 18 years of service to UCAR and SOARS in education. We want to thank Karen for everything she has done for all of us so mark your calendars for Friday, January 19th from 2:00pm-4:30pm. It’s a western party folks, so put on your boots and celebrate!

Posted by Shaun Bush at ext. 2590,

Tuesday, January 16, 2018 to Saturday, January 20, 2018

Please view the New Hires and Departures as of Friday, January  12, 2018 at this location:

Posted by Macy Nedelka at ext. 8723,

Tuesday, January 16, 2018 to Friday, January 19, 2018