No one class can provide instruction on cross-country skiing, outdoor fitness, rangers working with archeologists, and geotechnologies in Utah, but all can be taught in one semester, thanks to the SUU’s Outdoor Education Series (OES) that provides information and instruction concerning all things outdoors for the novice through expert in a free weekly series open to the general public as well as the campus community.
This semester, the community outreach program will include topics ranging from art and snowshoeing, conditioning for outdoor fitness, outdoor diseases, taking children outdoors, and how to find the right outdoor gear for any experience level and budget, all taught by local outdoor experts who know, firsthand, the great advantages of Cedar City’s prime location amongst scenic state and national parks, monuments and public lands.
This week’s class, on Thursday, January 31, will feature a presentation by former Olympic cross-country skier Abigail Larson, instructing attendees about cross-country skiing and racing.
The weekly sessions will continue for 12 weeks on Thursdays at 11:30 a.m. in the SUU Outdoor Center in the Sharwan Smith Student Center. Admission is free to all OES sessions.
In addition to the weekly sessions, there will also be a supplementary Saturday session this semester, on April 6, where attendees will participate in a translocation field experience to help transfer Utah prairie dogs.
Now in its third year, OES Coordinator Anne Smith organized the community program to improve access to outdoor information and opportunities for SUU students, faculty, staff and Cedar City residents.
“Our goal is to provide something for everyone,” explained Smith. “With OES, we hope to break the stereotypes some have about those who are, per se, ‘outdoorsy.’ Every one of us is outdoorsy in one way or another.”
The OES is one of the many efforts by SUU to take advantage of its scenic location. Over the past few years SUU has developed its SUU Outdoors program, built a Challenge Course, began to offer a four-year degree in Outdoor Recreation in Parks and Tourism, installed an indoor climbing wall, offered many outdoor student and community activities, and opened the new Harry Reid Center for Outdoor Engagement.
The OES is sponsored by SUU’s Harry Reid Center for Outdoor Engagement and the Outdoor Recreation in Parks and Tourism program. For the Spring 2013 Outdoor Education Series schedule, please visit the Harry Reid Center for Outdoor Engagement in person or online, at suu.edu/uc/outdoor/.