NOLS Blog

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Tips for Visiting 12 Iconic National Parks

By Molly Herber on 7/8/16 10:18 AM

We know you love to get down and dirty in the wilderness for weeks at a time—it's what you do.

Luckily, for the times in between when you have just one day to explore, our national parks have plenty of activities—and will spark your appetite for bigger trips in the future.

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Topics: Behind the Scenes, climbing, Backpacking, adventure, education

When Urban Environments Go Wild: Wilderness Medicine in the Aftermath of Disaster

By Sarah Buer on 7/5/16 9:41 AM

“Wilderness has no handrails, no telephones, and no simple solutions for complex emergency situations. It does have dangers. Some are obvious: rock fall, moving water, stormy weather, avalanches, crevasses, and wild animals. Others are subtle: impure water, dehydration, cold and damp weather, altitude illness, and human judgment.” -Tod Schimelpfenig, NOLS Wilderness Medicine

The importance of wilderness medicine knowledge and protocols in disaster zones is tenfold. When resources are depleted, emergency access is delayed, and safely functioning environments become austere, an urban setting ultimately transforms into a modern-day wilderness.

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Topics: Alumni, Behind the Scenes, wilderness medicine, risk management, education, wilderness, NOLS Wilderness Medicine

Putting Leadership into Practice: AmeriCorps and NOLS

By Travis Davis on 6/22/16 11:46 AM

Travis reflects on his experiences serving with AmeriCorps and his NOLS courses, thinking about how their intersection has helped him grow and develop as a leader.

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Topics: Alumni, Behind the Scenes, whitewater, AmeriCorps, education, leadership

NOLS Courses Are So Much Pun!

By Sarah Buer on 5/20/16 8:51 AM

We believe in the value of education—and in having fun.

Get your daily dose of humor with some of our favorite NOLS-related puns:

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Topics: Behind the Scenes, adventure, education, backcountry, leadership

Leadership Reads for Housebound Adventurers

By Kim Freitas on 4/12/16 9:05 AM

It’s not always possible to take off on an adventure. Sometimes, life gets in the way. Picking up a book is a great way to escape your day-to-day routine, wind down, and relax.

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Topics: Behind the Scenes, National Outdoor Leadership School, leadership

Scott Briscoe on NOLS: It’s a Game Changer [Interview]

By Kim Freitas - no bio on 4/7/16 8:13 AM

Scott Briscoe was a member of Expedition Denali in June 2013, the first all African American team to attempt this climb. After returning from the expedition, several expedition members toured around the country, where they told the story of the climb.

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Topics: Alumni, Behind the Scenes, Expedition Denali, NOLS Alaska, education, backcountry

Why I Moved 1,600 Miles to Intern at NOLS

By Sarah Zimmerman on 4/6/16 8:00 AM

When I decided to travel about 1,600 miles from home to the middle of Wyoming for an internship in public relations and marketing, my friends and family wondered why I couldn't do the same type of thing a little closer. Coming from a full-time position at a full-service PR and marketing agency in Tennessee, people also couldn’t see why I would choose an internship for my next career move. But what they didn’t understand was that I wanted to deepen my knowledge of PR and marketing within the frame of the outdoor industry, from the leaders in wilderness education.

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Topics: NOLS, Behind the Scenes, Lander, NOLS Rocky Mountain, National Outdoor Leadership School, education, leadership

How to Choose Wildness Every Day

By Molly Herber on 4/2/16 8:00 AM

If you’ve spent any time in the wilderness, you know that how you feel there is special. Wilderness isn’t just a space, an empty shoreline or a quiet grove of trees—it’s a state of mind, too.

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Topics: Behind the Scenes, Backpacking, adventure, wilderness, backcountry

Where Should You Take Your Gap Year? [Quiz]

By NOLS Blog on 3/21/16 8:40 AM

You’re ready to spend some time exploring before heading to college—but where should you go?

Take the quiz and find out!

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Topics: Behind the Scenes, adventure, Gap Year, education, quiz

3 Steps to Successful Conflict Management

By Molly Herber on 3/11/16 9:29 AM

If you've ever spent any time with a group of people (which you probably have, unless you were born a hermit), you've noticed that no matter how much you adore everyone or how many watts of synergy you're generating, you come to a point where ideas clash and frustrations rise.

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Topics: Behind the Scenes, education, leadership

The NOLS Underground: Caving

By Sarah Zimmerman on 2/25/16 10:46 AM
Photo by Lindsay Nohl.
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Topics: Behind the Scenes, Semester, adventure, NOLS Southwest, education, caving

Expedition Denali: Where Are They Now?

By Kim Freitas - no bio on 2/24/16 9:26 AM
Photo by Brad Christensen.
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Topics: Alumni, Behind the Scenes, Expedition Denali, instructor, mountaineering, education, backcountry, leadership

Come Meet Our 108-Year-Old Founder

By Sarah Zimmerman on 2/23/16 1:24 PM

At NOLS, we have a tradition of celebrating our history. To honor and commemorate the leadership of our founder, Paul Petzoldt, colleagues, longtime friends, and NOLS faculty and staff gathered to dedicate a “bronze Paul” at our headquarters in Lander, Wyoming.

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Topics: Alumni, Behind the Scenes, Lander, National Outdoor Leadership School

Why You Should Get Outside for Your Gap Year

By Molly Herber on 2/12/16 1:27 PM

Each year, more students choose to take a gap year before college, spending the year after graduating high school to travel, work or volunteer. A gap year is a great way to gain experience, learn about yourself, and take a break from the traditional classroom before buckling down for another four years of school. Choosing the right gap year program can be tricky. If you type "gap year" into your search bar, you'll see what feels like an endless list of options.

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Topics: Behind the Scenes, Semester, Backpacking, adventure, Gap Year, education, backcountry, leadership

5 Ways to Use Vision and Action to Get Stuff Done

By Molly Herber on 2/10/16 11:56 AM
Photo courtesy of Alex Chang - Cornell Leadership Expedition in Patagonia.
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Topics: Behind the Scenes, education, leadership