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Celebrating NOLS in the New Year

By NOLS on Jan 9, 2020
Paul Petzoldt instructing a group of NOLS students in the early years of the school. Photo from NOLS archives.

January 2020 is a month of great reflection and celebration at NOLS. It marks the:

  • Welcoming of our first female president,
  • Paul Petzoldt's 112th birthday,
  • our 55th year educating students in the outdoors, and
  • 50 years of NOLS in homes across America.
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Topics: NOLS, events, anniversary, history, paul petzoldt, documentary, announcement, stories, Terri Watson, 55th anniversary

Netflix Co-Founder Marc Randolph on Leadership and How to Learn It

By Marc Randolph on Jul 28, 2016

We caught up with Netflix co-founder, executive mentor, and Chair of the NOLS Board of Trustees Marc Randolph to hear his thoughts on how learning resilience in the wilderness helped him build the grit to be a business leader.

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Topics: Alumni, NOLS, leadership, Behind the Scenes, education

Why I Moved 1,600 Miles to Intern at NOLS

By Sarah Zimmerman on Apr 6, 2016

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

5 Things You Already Do That Make You a Female Outdoor Leader

By Annalise Grueter on Oct 19, 2015


The author looking out at the Sangre de Cristo Mountains in southern Colorado from Mount Adams at 13,931 feet. Photo by Ryan Richardson.

Backpacker magazine recently posted this piece online touching on the fact that, regardless of outdoor experience, their female readership were less likely to view themselves as leaders than their male readership, and that needs to change. We agree.

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Topics: Alumni, NOLS, leadership, National Outdoor Leadership School, climbing, cooking, communication, backpacking, adventure, kayaking, Outdoors, Live the Dream, mountaineering, all-women, wilderness, backcountry

Happy Fourth of July!

By Molly Herber on Jul 2, 2015

Whether you're on a beach, in the mountains, or in a city, we hope you enjoy celebrating the United States' birthday this weekend! If you don't have plans yet, take a look below to get some inspiration from the way these NOLS alumni celebrated the Fourth of July in the backcountry.

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Topics: Alumni, NOLS, Behind the Scenes, National Outdoor Leadership School, backcountry

Which NOLS Course Are You? [Quiz]

By NOLS Blog on Jun 25, 2015

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Topics: Alumni, NOLS, Behind the Scenes, National Outdoor Leadership School, expedition

Expedition Denali stories inspire in Lander and beyond

By Casey Adams on Mar 4, 2013

Last week, the Expedition Denali team traveled to Lander, Wyo., where they spent a day at NOLS Headquarters for their final gathering before they attempt to summit Denali in June. As part of this visit, they held a forum for local NOLS staff in which they shared their motivations, fears, and expectations for joining Expedition Denali. Each brought his or her own story to the team, creating a strong, diverse group that will be able to impact the lives of a variety of children across the nation.

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Topics: NOLS, Behind the Scenes, Seattle, Adina Scott, Expedition Denali, Ryan Mitchell, National Outdoor Leadership School, active, adventure, youth of color, Outdoors, youth, Tyrhee Moore, expedition, climb, summer camp, Pacific Northwest, D.C. Philadelphia, Denali, wilderness

Wyss Campus to open its doors

By Casey Adams on Oct 31, 2012

Located along the Little Popo Agie River that flows through the largely federally protected
Red Canyon near Lander, Wyo. is the new NOLS Wyss Wilderness Medicine Campus,
dedicated Oct. 12. This week, the campus will welcome its first Wilderness EMT

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Topics: NOLS, Wilderness EMT, Behind the Scenes, Wyss Wilderness Medicine Campus, Popo Agie, Lander, Red Canyon, technology, National Outdoor Leadership School, wilderness-medicine, Wyoming, Wyss, students, energy use, viability, Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem, cabins, undeveloped, wildlife, caretaker, Hanjorg Wyss, educational facilitiy, efficient building, habitat, campus

Expedition Denali: Team in Training

By Casey Adams on Oct 8, 2012

After a summer of training hard in Washington's Cascade Range, British
Columbia's Waddington Range, and Alaska's Chugach Range, the Expedition
team is poised to embark on their journey to Denali in June 2013.

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Topics: NOLS, Behind the Scenes, Waddington Range, team, Expedition Denali, Mt. Baker, black, Cugach Range, African American, National Outdoor Leadership School, Cascade Range, Outdoors, British Columbia, Alaska, Denali, Washington

Lightning Safety in the Backcountry

By Nate Robbins on Aug 27, 2012

Photo by Brad Christensen.

On Tuesday Aug. 21, NOLS Curriculum and Research Manager John Gookin gave a presentation about lightning safety in Lander at the Noble Hotel classroom. The presentation focused on the brochure developed by NOLS and the National Weather Service on lightning safety.

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Topics: Ground Current, NOLS, Lightning Safety, Lightning Positions, Lightning, Lightning Strike, Educators Notebook, backcountry, National Weather Service

What's On Your Roof?

By Aparna Rajagopal-Durbin on May 25, 2011

"108 solar panels are on ours," says a Noble Hotel window panel display to passers by. Yesterday, NOLS hosted Celebrating Our Past by Sustaining Our Future, a gathering to celebrate the unveiling of the solar array on NOLS Rocky Mountain's Noble Hotel. Despite cloudy skies and a thunderstorm, the panels did their job.

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Topics: NOLS, National Outdoor Leadership School, Environmental Stewardship, Noble solar array, Noble Hotel

Camping Recipe: Kelly’s Gluten-Free Cinnamon Rolls

By NOLS on May 3, 2011

Emerging from my sleeping bag on a chilly morning I can think of no better breakfast than a piping hot concoction of butter, four, and sugar.

There’s just one problem: I don’t like gluten and it doesn’t like me back. Gluten intolerance can be tricky, especially in the backcountry.

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Topics: NOLS, Expedition Prep, Breakfast, recipe, baking, cooking, Whisperlite, health, cooking in the woods, Educators Notebook, dessert, cooking in the wilderness, "gluten free", the cooker, "cinnamon rolls", backcountry, backcountry recipe

The NOLS Podcast - Leadership Progression

By NOLS on Feb 2, 2011

In this episode of The NOLS Podcast, John Kanengieter, NOLS Director for Leadership, sits down with Jamie O’Donnell, NOLS instructor and program supervisor, to discuss the leadership progression on a course and speak to the unscripted nature and subtle nuances of how we teach leadership.

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Topics: NOLS, leadership, jamie o'donnell, leadership progression, discussion, Expedition Prep, leaders, experiential education, learn, John Kanengieter, curriculum, NOLS Professional, teach, Educators Notebook, instructor, outdoor education

Time Magazine Cover Features NOLS Grad Capt. Jeremiah Ellis

By Aparna Rajagopal-Durbin on Apr 27, 2010

Below Photo By Adam Ferguson, Time

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Topics: NOLS, Afghan War, NOLS Pro, National Outdoor Leadership School, Captain Ellis, wilderness-medicine, Jeremiah Ellis, April Time Magazine Cove, WMI, Pir Mohammed School, Live the Dream, Time Magazine, NOLS Professional Training

Touchdown for NASA NOLSies on Shuttle Discovery

By Aparna Rajagopal-Durbin on Apr 20, 2010

This morning, the Space Shuttle Discovery touched down at the Kennedy Space Center, with all on board safe, sound, and back at home. The crew (pictured above) includes Commander Alan (Dex) Poindexter, Pilot Jim Dutton, and Mission Specialists Rick Mastracchio, Dorothy Metcalf-Lindenburger, Stephanie Wilson, Clayton Anderson, and Naoko Yamazaki.

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Topics: NOLS, leadership, Shuttle Discovery, National Outdoor Leadership School, NASA, NASA Leadership Expedition, Live the Dream, Astronauts