Major: Outdoor Education
Graduation Year: 2013
I am the Director of Experiential Education at the Oakley School – a therapeutic boarding school tucked against the foothills of the Unita Mountains near Park City, UT. The school serves high-school-aged boys and girls who are transitioning home from wilderness therapy and/or residential treatment. Our team of 10 instructors and myself design and facilitate weekend day trips and several extended-day trips for Oakley students. Activities include climbing, mountain biking, skiing, hiking, canyoneering, and yoga.
Whether skiing Utah’s “Greatest Snow on Earth” or doing trail work at a local bouldering spot, student interaction is what makes the job so enjoyable for me. Watching students develop passion and discover a zest for life is truly the most rewarding part. Additionally, as a director, I enjoy making contributions to the school as a member of the administrative team.
Before working at the Oakley School, I was a lead field guide for Elements Wilderness Program – a wilderness therapy program in central Utah. It was a natural transition after graduating from UNH. Year-round guiding for wilderness therapy combined nearly every aspect of the UNH OE experience – technical skills and leadership; pedagogy and creative facilitation; above all, respect for your work and those you work with. That was at the heart of the UNH OE program, and it’s served me well in every professional experience I’ve had since.