Center Constructed to Promote Leadership
was the hardest thing I've ever done," said Registrar Sara Brackin
after successfully scaling the 50-foot north wall of the university's
new climbing tower.
Brackin and five
others were undergoing a weeklong training program this summer to become
facilitators for the new Outdoor Education Center. The project, consisting
of a 50-foot ropes tower, climbing wall and six, shorter stations, is
located in the five-acre wood on north campus.
Funded from a federal
grant and constructed by Alpine Towers International, the center was
dedicated in March, 2002 and will be used by students, faculty, staff
and the community at-large. University officials said it would benefit
the campus and the community in many ways.
The cost of the
project is $98,700 and was paid for by a grant obtained from the U.S.
Department of Labor through the Lumber River Council of Governments
(COG). The Health and Physical Education Department will manage the
up the project for the PE Department were Associate Professor Mary Beaver,
Instructor Denise Renfrow, Women's Tennis Coach Robyn Langley and Scott
Haith, a graduate assistant. They were assisted by Ottis Murray, a grant
writer for the Office of Sponsored Research, Sylvia Pate, director of
the Regional Center and Associate Vice Chancellor for Outreach Richard
The university worked
with Lumber River Council of Goverments (COG) on the funding. The Student
Government Association (SGA) chipped in a $500 gift and Physical Plant
prepared the site for construction.
A ropes course is
designed to build teamwork, leadership, problem-solving skills and self-esteem.
Diverse community groups such as Communities in School, Juvenile Services
and Upward Bound have expressed interest in the center, and there is
a great deal of interest among diverse groups on campus.
anticipate using this program a lot with our Leadership Service Opportunies
Program (LSOP) as well as other student groups, such as Student Government,
Greeks and clubs," said Melanie Clark, assistant director of Leadership
and Community Service programs for the Office of Student Activities.
Other uses possible
for the wooded site include fitness trails, camping sites and other
outdoor activities and instruction.
praised all involved for their teamwork.
that happens has to have people who take the lead," he said. "This
is a wonderful addition to campus."
Towers is headquartered in Jonas Ridge, N.C., and is a world leader
in building, training and maintaining outdoor programs like this one.
The shorter challenge
initiatives include a "trust fall" and a 12-foot obstacle
to University Newswire