Posts Tagged ‘adventure education degree program’

Telemark Skiing AE 141-Backcountry Skiing in the San Juan Mountains around Fort Lewis College

Monday, November 26th, 2012


This course, offered by the Adventure Education B.A. degree program at Fort Lewis College in Durango CO, is an introduction to telemark and backcountry skiing for the adventure educator.  It includes turning, body position, selection, use and maintenance of equipment, safety procedures, group management, and winter alpine Leave No Trace practices.  This course is restricted to Adventure Education majors and minors. 


Prerequisites: Adventure Education major. Students who anticipate declaring an Adventure Education minor should speak with the instructor about waiver of prerequisites.  Additional course fee: $150, paid when you registered (which covers gear maintenance and replacement, ski passes, and transportation).

WFR for Your Outdoor Education-Get Your Certification Through Adventure Education at Fort Lewis College

Wednesday, October 31st, 2012


What kind of a course lets you play with great green globs of greasy grimy piggy guts?!  Wilderness First Responder, of course!  But seriously, this course provides the knowledge needed to handle medical emergencies requiring extended care in remote settings. Emphasis is on prevention, decision-making, and treatment. National certification requires this course to meet for approximately 80 hours. Students who successfully complete the course and pass the WFR exam receive a Wilderness First Responder certificate good for three years.


Course Learning Objectives:

  1. Develop a general understanding of human anatomy and physiology that will facilitate a more thorough understanding of medical pathophysiology.
  2. Demonstrate an understanding of common trauma, environmental, and medical related problems that are encountered in wilderness expedition settings.
  3. Demonstrate the ability to perform accurate wilderness medicine related patient assessments and provide appropriate treatment.
  4. Demonstrate the ability to perform essential wilderness medicine rescue skills related to the curriculum (basic life support, extremity splinting, wound cleaning, spine exam, dislocation reduction, spine management, epinephrine injection, and litter and improvised carries)
  5. Develop an understanding of wilderness CPR/AED treatments and demonstrate effective CPR and AED skills.

Course AE 101-“Foundations of Adventure Education” Introduces the Meaning of Outdoor Education

Thursday, October 11th, 2012

The primary purpose of this course, is for you to explore the match between you and adventure education. You will have opportunities to determine how you wish to be involved in the profession of using outdoor education, by discovering professional career paths—those that generally require a college degree—in schools, outdoor and environmental education programs, therapeutic adventure programs, and more.



Think of Foundations of Adventure Education as your 15-week adventure expedition. Adventures involve risk, expanding one’s comfort zone, and embracing the unknown. Successful expedition teams work together to accomplish common goals, with everyone giving 110%. Here in this course, the risks usually won’t be physical ones, but you may encounter potential academic risks. Just like in the wilderness, these risks are best managed when everyone is prepared and committed to learning, which promotes a community of trust and mutual support. Although broad topic areas and much of the reading material that takes us toward our goals is determined, you will be involved in some of the decisions along the path.

If this sounds like a course you would like to take as part of your degree path for Adventure Education, learn more at:  Fort Lewis College/Adventure Ed  or see what our current students, alumni and faculty are talking about in the world of Adventure Education on our Facebook Group page

Adventure Education Immersion Semester among “Wildest”

Monday, October 1st, 2012

As our outdoor education program grows, with Fort Lewis College offering a Bachelor of Arts degree in the field of Adventure Education, so does our “notoriety”.  

The former CEO of, Jim Spanfeller, has launched an outdoors/active-lifestyle publication, The Active Times, based in New York-and chose to feature our Immersion Semester as one of  “6 wildest college semesters”.   Read the article here

Fort Lewis College has offered the outdoor education-based degree for the last 5 years and has grown in enrollment an average of 30% per year since it’s inception.  Highlights that separate our program from others include an internship in the field for credit, senior research project and the immersion semester, where you take only Adventure Education courses for a full semester.

For more information on our program, visit our website at

AE321-Lead Rock Climbing Prepares Adventure Education Majors at Fort Lewis College

Tuesday, September 18th, 2012

AE 321 is an advanced climbing skills course focusing on traditional lead climbing, including selection and placement of protection, route finding, lead climbing and belaying techniques, multiple pitch climbing, advanced anchor building, rescue systems, and climbing instructional strategies.


Like other AE outdoor skills courses this course is not an activity course, per se, but a professional skills course for preparing adventure educators in the field of outdoor education to work effectively in institutional settings. 

 For those without leading experience, your climbing knowledge and skills will grow dramatically. For those with leading experience, this course will introduce you to the institutional context, expand your repertoire of lead climbing skills, and begin to prepare you to work directly with the kinds of clients/students you may encounter in an adventure education program which uses lead climbing to accomplish educational goals. If you’re interested in working as a professional climbing guide or for an organization like Outward Bound or NOLS with a well-managed climbing or mountaineering program, then I suggest you eventually look into seeking certification through the American Mountain Guides Association (AMGA).  This course provides a strong foundation for moving in that direction, particularly if you’ve had limited exposure to lead climbing in institutional settings. 

 What this course is not:

  • If you have limited traditional lead climbing experience, this class will not turn you into a masterful lead climber – there’s simply not enough time for this. However, it will serve as a “spring-board” for further education and development. 
  • The focus in this course is not on making you a stronger climber, but a smarter climber. You can get strong on your own time. 




  • AE 101 (Foundations of AE) & AE 121 (Top Rope Rock Climbing).
  • At least one year of personal top-rope climbing experience. 
  • AE major or minor.



  • Proficiency in all AE 121 skills, including:
    • Being able to set up and manage a top rope rock climb using a “top” or “sling-shot” belay system.
    • All knots and basic rope work taught in AE 121.
  • You are active and healthy enough to be able to follow 5.8 and carry a 50 lb. pack uphill for 30 minutes. 

Adventure Education in one of America’s Best River Towns

Thursday, September 6th, 2012


 Having your college located in a town like Durango that has 4 rivers flowing in a 20 mile radius is awesome.  Having  a college located in Durango that offers a degree in Adventure Education and uses those rivers to teach is priceless!

Read the article here Durango Is Best.

Fort Lewis College is doing just that-offering up an outdoor education degree program in Adventure Education.  For more information about Fort Lewis College in Durango Colorado click here  and for more information about the Bachelor of Arts degree in Adventure Education click here

Adventure Education Immersion Semester Highlights

Thursday, August 30th, 2012

One of the unique program offerings that the Bachelor of Arts degree has is the “Immersion” semester.

This is a 15-credit immersion semester where you take only Adventure Education courses, spending 4 to 10 days at a time backpacking and canoeing in the mountains and deserts of the Four Corners region. Courses include Wilderness Expedition (AE 201), Adventure Leadership (AE 210), Teaching Methods for Adventure Educators (AE 220), Wilderness First Responder (230), Challenge Course Fundamentals (AE 251). Students participate in outdoor education, learning by doing what they will be teaching others.

Check out our Facebook Group page “Adventure Education at Fort Lewis College” for more photos of these expeditions, as well as other AE courses, or learn more about this Bachelor of Arts degree program at

5 Great things about Adventure Education at Fort Lewis College

Tuesday, August 14th, 2012

Some highlights of the Adventure Education program for your consideration! Listed below are some of the reasons our students choose our outdoor education program:

Don’t block the view!

  1. A 15-credit immersion semester where you take only Adventure Education courses, spending 4 to 10 days at a time backpacking and canoeing in the mountains and deserts of the Four Corners region. Courses include Wilderness Expedition (AE 201), Adventure Leadership (AE 210), Teaching Methods for Adventure Educators (AE 220), Wilderness First Responder (230), Challenge Course Fundamentals (AE 251).
  2. Experiential and project-based instruction where you learn by doing, as well as by reading and writing about what you’re doing. You produce projects and programs for real client groups, attend and present workshops at professional conferences, and have opportunities to do actual teaching.
  3. Accrue at least 60 days of leadership and instruction experience, beyond class time, typically through summer jobs you must plan for with camps and outdoor programs. This is a required prerequisite for the internship for AE majors.
  4. A three-course research requirement for AE majors, where you learn statistics, research methodology, and create and present an original piece of research to the campus community. Research skills make you more employable with programs that analyze data to describe their results.
  5. An internship with an adventure-based program lasting 7 to 15 weeks. The internship for AE majors is often a stepping stone to your first job as an adventure educator.
These are the things that make a Bachelor of Arts degree from Fort Lewis College in Adventure Education a valuable investment for life!

No better Adventure Education location besides NZ? Outside Magazine thinks so!

Monday, March 26th, 2012

Durango makes the list as runner up to Best Adventure Hub WORLDWIDE! Second only to NZ? Thanks, Outside Magazine!!

Best Adventure Hubs

Durango, Colorado
Durango an adventure-sports capital? Go in April and you’ll see why. Within an hour of town, you can ski spring corn, nordic-ski around an alpine lake, kayak the Animas River, catch fat trout, hike a thirteener, ride 10,000-foot passes on a dizzy-making scenic byway, and mountain-bike blue-ribbon singletrack. Packed with college students and young transplants, the populace is uniquely devoted to the pursuit of fun, which might explain the four microbreweries and outsize nightlife for a town of 16,000 three hours from an interstate. Stay at the Rochester, a historic hotel that has a full breakfast and free cruiser bikes for guests (from $129). Large groups can base-camp at the Treehouse, a downtown vacation rental with a hot tub, views of the mountains, and singletrack right out the back door (from $1,400 per week for up to ten).

Did we mention the 300-plus days of sunshine?

Conference brings adventure education professionals to Fort Lewis College campus

Tuesday, March 13th, 2012

Lee Frazer, assistant professor in FLC's Adventure Education major, instructs students.

Lee Frazer, assistant professor in FLC’s Adventure Education major, instructs students.

There’s no better setting for outdoor education enthusiasts to gather than on a campus surrounded by inspiring mountain vistas.

That’s what the members of the Association for Experiential Education will get when the 2012 Rocky Mountain Region AEE conference convenes on the Fort Lewis College campus Friday, March 23, through Sunday, March 25. The AEE’s Rocky Mountain Region includes Arizona, Colorado, Kansas, Nebraska, New Mexico, Utah, Wyoming, and Sonora and Sinaloa, Mexico.

And for students in the Fort Lewis College Adventure Education program, it’s an opportunity to meet and work with professionals and practitioners in the field, as well as other students, professors, and educators.

“This is a a chance for students to get immersed in the professional scene of adventure education, because there will be people here from all over the region,” says Adventure Education Director and Professor Bob Stremba. “And it’s also a chance for adventure education students to present a workshop in front those people. They’ll get great experience and feedback.”

In the Fort Lewis College Adventure Education program, students learn how to lead, teach, and facilitate in a variety of settings that use outdoor and adventure environments, focusing on human-powered outdoor pursuits, including backpacking, ropes-challenge courses, rock climbing, mountaineering, and river running.

Thanks to FLC’s location between the southern Rocky Mountains and the desert Southwest, the program’s students are in the field about 40 percent of the time, some even spending seven-week blocks that include 21 days in the mountains, rivers and canyons of Colorado and Utah, learning about wilderness expedition planning, adventure leadership, and methods of teaching adventure education.

The AEE conference will feature speakers, student research presentations and poster sessions, and the announcing of annual awards for Experiential Leader, Organizational Member, and Rising Star of the Year awards. There will also be dozens of workshops, including telemark ski instructing, swiftwater rescue, and adaptive winter sports guiding.