A week in the wilderness

Friday August 13 2010


Seventeen incoming first-year students will spend Aug. 17-21 in the great outdoors camping, climbing, caving, and paddling at LC's Claytor Nature Center in Bedford County and in the Jefferson National Forest at Goshen.

The ABOVE (Above and Beyond Orientation Values Experiences) program was established by Paul Stern, coordinator of LC's New Horizons Outdoor Adventure and Leadership Program, to help first-year students with the transition to college life. Students make friends before their first semester gets under way.

"We believe the challenges associated with wilderness adventures provide a unique classroom for teaching and developing the judgment, self-confidence, and social skills critical to a successful first year in college," Stern said.

Students must have the ability to carry a 30-pound-plus backpack each day, participate in wilderness camping, climbing, caving in wild caves, and paddling on class II whitewater. Being comfortable working in close proximity to others is expected.

Part of a learning community, students will also become Leave No Trace Trainers and enroll in two academic classes in the fall: a health and physical education class called "cooperative and competitive movement challenges" and an introductory earth and environmental science class.

For more information, contact Shannon Brennan, director of media relations, at 434.544.8609.