Outdoor Leadership in 2021

OLP Spring T-shirt design taken from Spring calendar email

Kamryn Schnieder ~ Copy Editor

     The Outdoor Leadership Program (OLP) spring semester calendar is action packed with careful considerations for pandemic restrictions.   

Timothy Slusser, the Outdoor Leadership Program coordinator said he is “looking forward to the sea kayaking expedition and the rafting trips are always a personal favorite of mine” and the return of the ropes that the OLP “had to cancel the open ropes course in the fall because of the weather.”  Slusser is also excited for “some new programs [which] include the Survival Tip Tuesday Clinics and the Survival Overnight Challenge.”

      This semester is not without its hardships, both weather and COVID being forces that are unpredictable at times and Slusser said that while “the Outdoor Leadership Program does have a contingency plan in the unfortunate event that we have to quarantine due to Covid activity,” he encouraged everyone to “please wear your mask and wash your hands.”

     Part of the OLP’s programming is not just the activities but learning leadership skills as well. Slusser explained that “if OLP has to reschedule programs because of weather another concern we usually will try to reschedule those programs. In the event that we were unable to run them all together we do have other ways to provide similar experiences, but one of the best things about the Outdoor Leadership Program is the experiential aspect of actually going outdoors and letting nature and these wild spaces be a partner in education.”

     He continued, “That being said, there [are] still a lot of other ways you can get leadership training without specifically going into the outdoors. However, I found that in my experience wilderness trips are one of the best ways to really learn and practice leadership.” Individuals looking for leadership opportunities and training can still look to the OLP for training and education even if the weather or COVID interrupts the intended schedule.

     Slusser encouraged those considering becoming involved with the OLP to “reach out. Everybody on staff with OLP is very welcoming and friendly. We would love to talk to [them]… we are able to provide [them] with information or training that helps make it easier to get outside.”

     More information can be found in the coming days through email, Facebook, Instagram, and found around campus as mentioned above. Upcoming this Saturday, Feb. 6, is horseback riding. Contact olp@lynchburg.edu to sign up or contact Slusser for questions at slusser_tt@lynchburg.edu.

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