The outdoors as a classroom FAQs
Yes. While there is a requirement for students to participate in a minimum number of activities throughout the year, most students find they enjoy the program so much that they sign up for additional trips.
Students with equipment are encouraged to bring it to Montezuma when they come in the fall. However, we understand that many of our students come from countries where weather and the kinds of traditional outdoor activities vary greatly. UWC-USA has an equipment room — generously supported by alumni who are dedicated to the Wilderness Program –so all students can participate in our trips.
The American Southwest provides limitless hiking, camping, and outdoor activities. Almost half of all UWC-USA first-year students go on a Southwest Studies trip to the Grand Canyon in Northern Arizona. The Wilderness program also sponsors day hikes close to the UWC-USA campus, longer excursions for the purpose of training Wilderness leaders, and rock climbing and canoeing activities.
One of our fundamental beliefs at UWC-USA is that every student is capable of more than they think they are. We encourage students to find activities that match — and challenge — their skill level. More importantly we provide extensive training to help students learn the basics of campcraft and wilderness survival. We know that being challenged by the outdoors and being a little uncomfortable creates great learning opportunities provided students have the necessary support and encouragement.
UWC-USA’s Wilderness leadership encourages UWC alumni and other adults to volunteer or work with our students. For 2019 we are pleased to announce fellowships ideal for recent alumni or those starting out in the outdoor education field. Interested candidates should complete the 2022 Wilderness Fellow- Call for Applicants.
In New Mexico and Arizona, UWC-USA is operating under 10-year special use permits with the Santa Fe National Forest, Carson National Forest, and Apache-Sitgreaves National Forest. These permits allow access to remote wilderness areas and provide an excellent setting for teaching navigation, decision making, and leadership. UWC-USA is an equal opportunity provider and complies with the Federal Government’s requirements for Civil Rights laws.