Dr Sylvia Knight

Head of Education Services

I took over the education role at the Society in 2007 after a PhD at Reading University and various post-doctoral research posts at Reading, Oxford and the Open University, ending with some time being responsible for the communication and education side of the climateprediction.net project. Geography and physics were always my favourite subjects at school, and meteorology is one of the natural meeting places of the two. My Dad had enjoyed being a met observer during his National Service, and, although I never liked being asked what I wanted to do when I left school, it was always an area I suspected I would really enjoy.

exploring weather fieldwork

Exploring weather fieldwork ideas with PGCE geography students at the University of Ulster

I am the member of staff who is least frequently in Reading, as I work remotely from Manchester and am frequently out and about elsewhere in the U.K. Sometimes it is quite a challenge to find my desk under the piles of accumulated weather instruments which have been returned from being on loan to schools when I do appear!

One of the best things about my role is that it is constantly evolving, bringing new challenges and opportunities, sometimes with very little warning. In the last couple of years I have trained several hundred geography PGCE students, responded to government consultations, chased weather balloons, experimented with instruments, produced teaching resources for MetLink, our website for teachers and schools, talked to school students, written for print publications, designed experiments: the list goes on!

I’m a mother of 2 girls, and play the flute in a local community concert band (as well as at any other opportunity I can find!), occasionally drive a 1930 Austin 7 Chummy competitively and am trying to improve my open water swimming.