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McCombs School of Business

Leadership Expedition

Photo: Betsy Winston, Allison Yang, Betsy Winston

Patagonia is a frontier of campos (ranches) hidden in isolated mountain valleys and surrounded by ragged icy peaks, brawling rivers and cathedral-like fjords. The hallmarks of traveling in this landscape are exploration, remoteness and a tough climate–the weather in this part of the world is often unpredictable. However, these conditions help nurture forethought and resilience, skills relevant in today's global economy.

The McCombs Leadership Expedition is a 10-day field-based training that develops practical leadership skills and technical outdoor skills within the context of this rugged and ambiguous environment. On a daily basis, you will be challenged to exercise individual decisiveness while simultaneously facilitating excellent teamwork. There will be a strong focus on self-awareness and how to optimally navigate the roles of “team member” and “team leader”. Curriculum delivery will concentrate on situational leadership skills transferrable to school, business and many other social aspects.

On a wilderness expedition lessons are immediate, lasting, and applicable to your life. We’ve found that successful expeditions require many of the same skills that are essential in the professional world, including effective communication, influencing others and strategically delivering results. You will learn through experience and reflection in this intense learning environment, so prepare to exercise courage, focus on growth and have fun.

The above description supports the McCombs classroom portion:

The Patagonia Leadership Development Class will teach students leadership and offer an opportunity to practice these skills in an ambiguous environment.  Although many classes on leadership introduce frameworks, skills, and approaches that are integral to leadership effectiveness, this class enables students to put into practice their personal leadership philosophy and gain significant feedback from students, alumni and trained coaches.  The class will feature a classroom component consisting of four class sessions and a field component, which will take place in Patagonia, Chile from January 6-15 2015.  The class sessions are intended to facilitate self-reflection on students’ leadership approach and goals for this unique experience.  The field component is intended to provide the opportunity to enact such approach and assess the critical factors enabling students’ effectiveness in achieving success as leaders.


McCombs School of Business Leadership Expedition


NOLS representative visiting McCombs classroom: TBD
Patagonia field dates: TBD
Tuition: $2500.00
Group size: 8 (minimum) - 10 (maximum) participants
Course start/end: Coyhaique, Chile
Fly in/out: Balmaceda, XI Region, Chile
Activity: Backpacking
Enrollment starts TBD Application: Apply here
Due on TBD

Course application

Course deposit $500

Due on TBD

Tuition balance $2000

Equipment deposit $300

Additional required paperwork:

  • health form
  • insurance form
  • student agreement


Send Paperwork To:

By email:

By fax:

attn: Zach Snavely


By mail:

Zach Snavely

c/o Professional Training

284 Lincoln St

Lander WY 82520

Supplemental Information: Course Description
  Equipment List
  Travel and Logistics
  Backcountry Hygiene
  Fitness Recommendations
  Boot Fitting Advice
Tuition Protection Plan (TPP): Optional tuition insurance costing an additional 6% of the full tuition cost ($150.00) above the $2500.00 course tuition.
  • After paying your deposit, this 6% fee will automatically be included in your remaining balance unless you explicitly decline the additional coverage and cost by signing and submitting the TPP document along with the required paperwork (Due Oct 12, 2015).
  • If you decline you can not opt back into the plan and if you pay your balance down to $0.00 you cannot later elect to add TPP.

Tuition Protection Plan (pdf)

Cancellation Policy: Non-Refundable Deposit
60-45 days before course: NOLS retains 25%
30-44 days before course: NOLS retains 50%
less than 30 days before course and once the course has begun: NOLS retains 100% tuition
For more information contact: NOLS Professional Training
Phone: 800-710-6657 ext. 2720





A behind-the-scenes look at what a NOLS wilderness expedition is all about:


You’ll learn how to lead your expedition-mates and even how to be a leader when following.

Photo: Rainbow Weinstock

"If you can figure out how to cross rapid-flowing, waist-deep rivers or how to bushwhack through almost impenetrably dense brush on extremely steep inclines, then you can figure out how to turn around a declining business or bring new innovation to a category—they both require dedication, brainstorming, and teamwork."

Allison L. Yang
MBA Candidate
Marketing, Strategy, Finance
Kellogg School of Management

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