UNCW and NCOAE Offer UNCW Students Outdoor Adventures for Academic Credit

Monday, April 16, 2018

Beginning this summer, UNCW students will have the opportunity to earn academic credit by participating in courses in Alaska, Chile or Patagonia through the National Center for Outdoor & Adventure Education. The university has entered into an academic relationship with the Wilmington-based organization, which offers experiential courses designed to promote critical thinking, environmental stewardship and the acquisition of technical outdoor skills.

“Today’s job market demands that students graduate with as many skills and certifications as possible,” said Jeff Hill, chair of the UNCW Department of Environmental Sciences. “NCOAE’s wilderness training adds depth to our program and value to the degree. We are delighted to add NCOAE’s expertise to our program and are eager for students to take advantage of these field-oriented opportunities.”

Environmental sciences students may earn up to six credit hours through NCOAE Outdoor Educator courses. Among the approved activities are skiing and snowboarding in Chile’s Andes Mountains, whitewater paddling and mountaineering in Patagonia and backpacking in central Alaska.

The courses, which run from 24 to 32 days, are timed to coincide with scheduled breaks during the 2018-19 academic year. In addition to thrilling outdoor adventures, the courses will enable students to earn certifications in wilderness medicine training, avalanche mitigation and snow science training. The courses also offer training in Leave No Trace’s outdoor ethics, remote-expedition planning, wilderness risk management, backcountry navigation and instructor-level use of NCOAE’s accredited curriculum.

UNCW students may enroll in the for-credit courses through SeaNet. Students interested in other NCOAE courses may register through the organization’s website. The three courses, each offered through Environmental Sciences as graduate or undergraduate programs, are:

  • Summer 2018: Alaska Field Experience
  • Summer 2018: Chile Field Experience
  • Winter Break 2018: Wilderness First Aid (Patagonia)

-- Tricia Vance