Leadership in the Outdoor Recreation Economy in Oregon

Language Requirement: None
Academic Standing by Program Start: Sophomore
Location: Americas
GPA: 3.0
Program Overview

This program has been canceled for Summer 2022

The outdoor recreation economy is thriving in the Pacific Northwest. Beyond the guiding and outfitting services, the outdoor recreation industry employs product developers, small and large retailers, and other professionals. Fishing trips, Columbia Sportswear, RVing, national parks, #vanlife, ice-axes, expensive climbing gear, and wilderness therapy are all connected to this industry that is growing rapidly, according to the Bureau of Economic Analysis.

This eight-week study away program examines leadership and social impact in this large and multidimensional sector of the U.S. economy, right here in the outdoor adventure hub of Oregon.

The course will begin with an intensive experiential learning component in the form of a week-long river rafting trip on the Deschutes River. You will learn to coordinate an extended river trip, read water, pack gear and cook outdoors for a river trip. River equipment, transportation, and food are provided. You will bring personal camping gear, a willingness to learn, the desire to have a good time, and the expectation of working as a team member. No experience is required. This expedition is accessible.

After this leadership immersion, the course will continue through remote lectures, independent leadership development activities, and remote research projects highlighting examples of non-profit, government, and business efforts to promote sustainability, equity, and inclusion in the outdoor recreation economy.

Example Itinerary

Week 1: Two-day orientation in Eugene & start rafting trip!

Week 2: Finish rafting trip

Week 3-8: Remote leadership activities and research projects

Dates and Deadlines
Term Year Priority Deadline Deadline Arrival Date Departure Date
Summer 2022 N/A 5/1/2022 6/21/2022 8/12/2022
Academic Details

BA 410/510 - 4 Credits

Equivalent to "Resilient Leadership for Social Impact"

Course Equivalencies

UO students: please refer to the UO Course Equivalency Process and the UO Office of the Registrar Course Equivalency Database.

Non-UO students: Actual credit awarded is determined by the relevant department at your university in consultation with the study abroad office. Check with your study abroad advisor for more information.

Application process

This program has a rolling admission application processGEO staff (and the program faculty leader, if applicable) will complete a review of the application materials of complete applications in the order that they are submitted (“first come, first serve”). Decisions about acceptance will be made shortly after you submit a complete application. There are some programs that fill fast, some even before the deadline. Students are encouraged to complete applications and commit to programs early.

Acceptance is based on a holistic review of your application.  This includes a review of your GPA, transcripts (including courses taken and in-progress), any additional requirements or prerequisites (see section "Additional Requirements"), and the short statement. Some programs require a letter of recommendation from a faculty that is not the program's faculty leader. If a letter of recommendation is required, you will find more information in your GEO application portal.

Faculty and Staff

Wilderness expeditions lead Eric Boggs to his career in teaching, training and leadership consulting. Through backpacking and sea kayaking adventures in remote corners of the world, ranging from Arctic Scandinavia to Chilean Patagonia, Boggs discovered the incredible transformation of individuals and teams capable of resilience, community-building and great achievements. These powerful experiences catalyzed his passion for teaching and fascination with leadership development.

Boggs has worked in the field of leadership development for 20 years in contexts ranging from outdoor adventures, working on trail crews with adjudicated youth, teaching high school, and designing and facilitating corporate leadership workshops for companies like Google, Intuit, and the Technology Association of Oregon.

Travel Advisories

GEO programs are under continuous review during this period of global uncertainty and limited travel. All program details outlined on this page, including program cost, are subject to change if global or location-specific conditions require modifications to program structure.

To learn more about COVID regulations while studying abroad, visit our FAQ page.