NOLS: National Outdoor Leadership School Home


Spring 2004 Issue
    Cover Article
    Message from the Director
    Alumni Trailblazers
    Alumni Profile
    Alumni Trip Journal
    30 Years of the Cookery
    Wild Side of Medicine
    NOLS Expands College Credit Program
    Confessions of a Yukon Greenhorn
    Belay Off
Wilderness Facts
Leaders in Wilderness Preservation
Tebenkof Bay
Tribute to a True Wilderness Leader
Paddling at the Edge of the World
Alaskan Rain & the Rivine River
The Way It Was…
Leader Archives
  Address Update Form

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A NOLS classroom in the Denali Wilderness. (Top Inset) Theodore Roosevelt and John Muir, leaders of the wilderness movement.
© Deborah Sussex

This year marks an exciting time in NOLS history. We celebrate two important anniversaries this year — the school’s 39th year teaching wilderness education and the 40th anniversary of the Wilderness Act.

There is a strong and timeless connection between NOLS and the Wilderness Act. It’s no coincidence that NOLS was born in 1965, just a year after Congress passed the Wilderness Act to ensure future generations “the benefits of an enduring resource of wilderness.” NOLS founder Paul Petzoldt testified before Congress in favor of the Act. He had a vision to connect people with wilderness in an enduring way, and today that vision lives on as NOLS students explore the world’s wild places.

Over the years, NOLS has evolved in many ways — techniques have been refined, woolen Army surplus clothing has given way to Capilene and Gore-Tex, and our geographical scope has broadened — but our foundation remains rooted in wilderness and its preservation.

After 39 years teaching wilderness skills and leadership, NOLS graduates have become a population of wilderness advocates — voices in defense of the National Wilderness Preservation System.

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