With my move back home after graduation came many opportunities. One of which being a chance to go back to high school to volunteer with various programs.
Now my high school is kind of unique with a very special program called Adventure Education. It gets students out and in nature with a variety of trips. As a student myself I participated in a week long river trip when I was a junior, and then later that same year I backpacked with the Canyoneering Leadership program. The following year, my senior year, I was able to lead the Canyoneering Leadership trip.
The trips that Adventure Ed put on require a lot of planning and a lot of help from the community. Because I enjoyed the programs so much as a student, I volunteered to help with the sophomore river trip this past fall.
From a student’s perspective, it seems like the Adventure Ed trips are an easy excuse to get out of class, but in reality its an experience that changes perspectives and allows you to step out of your comfort zone.
I, personally, had amazing experiences on the trips and I learned a lot about myself. (Now I know that sounds super cheesy, but it’s the truth.) A large lesson that I learned was that sometimes it’s okay to not know what you’re doing or where you’re going because there’s someone right next to you feeling the same way and sharing your fears with another person made everything feel real and more comforting.
I am and will forever be grateful to have experienced the Adventure Education trips and I’m even more grateful to now be a part of the volunteer staff.
In addition to volunteering for the Adventure Ed trips, I’m also a volunteer coach for the high school’s Alpine Ski Team. I was a part of the team all four years of high school and I’m delighted to be back on the hill as a coach.
The same two coaches I had as a student are still dealing with the ever-changing group of rowdy high-schoolers. Scott and Peter are saints to say the least and I’m excited to be a part of the team again beside them as a mentor and leader now.
Being a part of a high school sports team was vital to my sanity in high school and I know its an opportunity some kids never get. Thankfully the alpine ski team is one that welcomes everyone, no matter their ability. Equipment is handed out if necessary and it gives students an opportunity to enjoy winter sports. Grand County alone has two ski areas and miles upon miles of trails for snowshoeing and cross country skiing, so why not give students the opportunity to ski twice a week?
I’m excited to be a coach this year and learn more about the sport I loved when I was in school but from a different perspective.
Stay tuned for more updates about my involvement at the high school. Ski season is just beginning and in the spring, Adventure Ed trips will begin again.