A Leader Among College and University Outdoor Programs
As the oldest nationally accredited university outdoor education program in the nation, we attract students with a sincere desire to share their appreciation for the outdoors with people of all ages and abilities. We build strong teachers and leaders who can create and deliver enriching programs focused on healthy physical activities.
Focus on Teaching and Leadership
Strong leadership and teaching skills are critical for emerging outdoor professionals. Well-designed, real-world "apprenticeship" experiences provide the best support for up-and-coming practitioners. Our students gain valuable practical skills through required leadership days, practicum experiences, and internships. Students' participation in leadership activities throughout the curriculum enhances their theoretical understanding of the field.
A Progression for Success
Early in the program, students take on supported leadership roles during field-based courses. In this stage students are given "leader of the day" responsibilities that include developing a trip plan, teaching basic lessons to peers, and motivating and managing the group. As students advance through the curriculum they are introduced to local schools and organizations, planning and instructing day and weekend experiences. Later, students participate in a supervised teaching or leadership position in a community organization that ultimately leads to a culminating experience: a 400-hour internship.
A Connected Community
Outdoor Education is a small program within a larger university setting, which provides students with a wealth of opportunities while also establishing strong working relationships among their peers. On-campus employment is available through the Outdoor Education climbing wall, the Browne Center for Innovative Learning’s youth & student programs, Campus Recreation’s Outdoor Adventures program, and many work study jobs. Students can access a wealth of outdoor resources to practice skills with nearby paddling in Great Bay, surfing at the Atlantic coats, climbing at Pawtuckaway State Park, and hiking and backpacking in the White Mountains.
The curriculum is deliberately structured so students can complete minors or second majors in other subject areas, receiving valuable cross training for lifelong learning and career advantage. Each faculty is able to teach field experiences that build personalized relationships with individual students. Many students work closely with faculty on research projects and as teaching assistants, and these connections help with job placements in the future.
Program Coordinator: Nate Fitch