They're All 'Survivors' at Denison's Outdoor Orientation Program
Posted: August 18, 2000
Some four dozen entering Denison University freshmen will brave the wilds of West Virginia this weekend as a special orientation for their four-year course of studies at the Granville liberal arts college.
The Denison Outdoor Orientation (DOO) experience, now in its second year, is led by a hardy cadre of trail-tested professors and student campers who survived last year's three-day trek into the wilds of the Monongahela National Park in Eastern West Virginia.
This "unique, challenging and enjoyable transition into life at Denison " promises the backpacking freshmen a chance to form new bonds and friendships without the usual interference of CD players, cell phones, walkmans, discmans and other distractions of dorm life, according to Denison's Dean of First-Year Students Don Schilling, professor of history.
The program starts at 9 a.m. this Friday (Aug. 18) with the Wilderness Training Institute (WTI), when all participants will gather at the Mitchell Recreation and Athletics Center for an on-campus series of sessions led by art historian Karl Sandin and other facilitators. Among their topics: Expectations of hiking in the Otter Creek Wilderness, including lessons in wilderness hygiene by Chemistry/Biochemistry Assistant Professor Peter Kuhlman.
This will be followed by a series of workshops on:
After completing the WTI on the Denison campus, including a trial hike Saturday afternoon in Denison's 350-acre Biological Reserve, the group departs Sunday morning for West Virginia.
There, they divide up into teams of eight students and one faculty/student leadership team and spend two and one-half days exploring the Otter Creek Wilderness Area in the Monongahela National Forest near Elkins, W.Va. The DOO'ers return toTuesday (Aug. 22) to join the other 600-plus members of Denison's Class of 2004 in August Orientation activities prior to the Aug. 28 start of classes for the fall term at Denison.
Denison University, founded in 1831, is an independent, residential liberal arts institution located in Granville, Ohio. A highly selective college enrolling 2,100 full-time undergraduate students from all 50 states and dozens of foreign countries, Denison is a place where innovative faculty and motivated students collaborate in rigorous scholarship, civic engagement and the cultivation of independent thinking.
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