It was a treat to both attend the WEA conference and help in the background as a HoneyRock grad student/staff member this past spring. This past year, I was introduced to the WEA by my supervisor at HoneyRock, Mike Odberg, as we worked to integrate our summer wilderness staff training and the WEA 6+1 curriculum. It was an exciting process to utilize the curriculum as a framework and see its success play out in our staff as they led trips with skill, empowerment, and enthusiasm.
This conference was an exciting opportunity to see more of the WEA as an organization and, even more so, a community. It also helped me as an outdoor professional to connect (and reconnect) with other professionals, which has been helpful as I’ve stepped into a new position working with an outdoor orientation program at a college. I’m looking forward to staying connected with the WEA crew as a source of community, learning, and growth!
In my new position as the Assistant Director of Outdoor Programs at Kalamazoo College, I help to organize and lead our pre-orientation wilderness program, along with developing our student leaders throughout the school year. Already, a handful of the connections made at the conference have been helpful as we have had to adapt our spring programming due to the coronavirus. I also anticipate that the WEA curriculum will be helpful in our leader training here in Kalamazoo.
2020 Student Leader Award Honoree
|Board President Emily McKenzie, Honorre Jess Port, Award Nominator Michael Odberg|