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Gathering at Base Camp Part 2

Part 1 | Part 2

By Susan Brame

Reprinted from The Leader, Spring 2003, Vol. 18, No. 2

 
 
An artist’s rendering of the completed NOLS Base Camp in Lander, Wyo. The project will include a renovation of the historic Noble Hotel, and an educational center, located in between the Noble and the recently completed headquarters building.

NOLS grad and parent Peter Roy serves on the NOLS Board of Trustees and co-chairs the volunteer steering committee for this initiative. “NOLS continues to provide important leadership education,” observes Roy. “The demands of running a global organization like NOLS are immense. I believe it is essential for the school to update its international base camp facilities in Lander, which is why I’m co-chairing this initiative.”

In its entirety, the new base camp will maintain and enhance valuable interaction between NOLS students, staff and volunteers. For the first time in its history, NOLS will conduct its global operations from a base camp designed to best serve our courses and students. The student experience — from Wyoming’s Wind River Mountains to the remote reaches of the Yukon’s South Macmillan River — will be even more powerful with this stronger foundation.

Strengthening our Roots

NOLS students receive an education that is unavailable anywhere else. Graduates leave the school with a connection to the land and an ethic about how they relate to the natural world. Students learn to live and travel safely and confidently in some of the world’s most spectacular wilderness.

“I remain involved with NOLS because of the impact my course had on me, personally,” explains NOLS graduate and steering committee member Judy Heisley, “and because I know thousands of others benefit from a similar education every year.

“NOLS has an important message,” says Heisley, when asked why she has taken on a leadership role in the Base Camp Initiative. “The NOLS curriculum has proven itself to be viable on a local, national and international level. That message must have some kind of presence. A strong, stable presence from the Base Camp in Lander lends weight to the message that NOLS conveys through all of its programs around the world.”

Supporting Wilderness Education

Support for the base camp initiative began with the donation of three city lots to the school by Lander resident and Wyoming State Rep. Dr. Harry Tipton and his wife, Alex. The new headquarters stands in this location.

Tipton, who is also the speaker pro-tempore of the Wyoming State House of Representatives, said he and his wife decided to donate the land “because NOLS has been a good citizen in Lander and it keeps them downtown. We didn’t want to see them move out,” notes Tipton. “This will help keep downtown Lander viable.”

Since the Tiptons donated the land for the headquarters, other NOLS supporters close to the school are stepping up to support the initiative. NOLS Trustee Greg Avis and his wife, Anne, both NOLS graduates, recently pledged a leadership gift in support of the campaign. When discussing their gift Greg observed succinctly that “every expedition needs a strong base camp.”

Part 1 | Part 2

 
 
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For the first time in its history, NOLS will conduct its global operations from a base camp designed to best serve our courses and students. The student experience — from Wyoming’s Wind River Mountains to the remote reaches of the Yukon’s South Macmillan River — will be even more powerful with this stronger foundation.

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