We'd like to introduce ourselves.
Alpenglow's creators have a combined 50+ years of experience in outdoor education. After several years of working in various different outdoor programs and organizations, we found something to be desired in the field of outdoor education. Namely, mental health wellness in programs is in need of attention, the field needs more research to increase its legitimacy, and there is a lack of technical skill expertise in many programs thus reducing access to outdoor recreation. We developed Alpenglow to address these needs in our field.
First, we developed the Behavioral First Responder, an online certification to teach enrollees skills to support our clients, students, and peers who may be going through a tough time or dealing with mental/behavioral health challenges. Often times when participating in outdoor programs, students are in a novel environment without their usual coping mechanisms. Without their go-to coping strategies, they may struggle to cope with the new stresses. Alternatively, many outdoor programs encourage reflection and self-awareness. A person may discover that they are struggling with something and need support. The Behavioral First Responder teaches skills founded in counseling and social work so that outdoor educators can best support a person in their time of distress and continue that support beyond the moment.
Secondly, we consult with outdoor education organizations to discover their program outcomes, how the company is mitigating risk, and what students are walking away with after their course. Through program research and evaluation, we hope to contribute to the growing body of evidence that shows that outdoor education has important outcomes for our students and our communities.
Lastly, we recognize that sometimes outdoor programs may not have access to technical expertise in house for the outdoor recreation activities they may want to offer to students and staff. We can help! Alpenglow has access to dozens of highly skilled outdoor educators that can facilitate staff training or custom adventure courses for any group! We want to help you get outside and feel empowered!
The inspired founder of Alpenglow Education, Curt received his Ph.D. from Indiana University. He is especially interested in increasing mental health awareness in outdoor education and interested in the process of how people actually learn things. This shows through in Curt's teaching style as a professor: rarely does he tell students what to do, how to do it, or what "the answer" is. Instead, he fosters an environment where students figure out "the answer" for themselves. In addition to mental health and experiential learning, Curt is interested in technology (and how it influences learning and lifestyle), climbing, backcountry skiing, and really good coffee.
As Director of Operations, I get to put my unique combination of field experience and love for spreadsheets to use! I get to support the mission of Alpenglow by instructing some of the courses and organizing the logistics for our contracts for research and evaluations, trips, and trainings. Alpenglow spoke to me because of its emphasis on increasing empirically-supported techniques for working with students in the field toward improving mental health and behavioral health. In addition to spreadsheets and increasing mental wellness, I love dogs, reading, skiing, and trivia!
We have an amazingly talented group of outdoor educators, instructors, professors, and administrators that we get to call our staff! Working in organizations like Outward Bound, NOLS, university outdoor programs across the country, and much more, we have a well-rounded staff who are highly skilled, whether it be in mountaineering, research methods, risk management, or social work.
Thank you for taking the time to get to know us!
We hope you reach out to us so we can get to know you too. Look for upcoming blogs about our latest adventure: touring France, Switzerland, and Austria to develop outdoor adventure courses for Indiana University!
Sneak peak: too much gelado, the most amazing mountain views, and cultural learnings!