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Endowed Adventure

CMU Outdoor Program to host gala and silent auction to raise funds for student trip leaders

Located in the heart of the Grand Valley, Colorado Mesa University is a prime destination for outdoor enthusiasts, offering over 300 days of sunshine each year and an abundance of outdoor recreational activities. To help students get acquainted with their surroundings, the CMU Outdoor Program provides students with opportunities to explore Colorado and beyond through student-led trips. These trips range from hiking and mountain biking to river rafting and rock climbing.

To ensure the safety of all trip participants, student trip leaders are required to obtain industry standard certifications such as Wilderness First Responder, Avalanche Rescue and Single Pitch Climbing Instructor. However, these certifications can cost students up to $1,000 each. To help combat the cost, the Outdoor Program established an endowment scholarship last fall.

“These certifications not only help our students become better trip leaders here at the Outdoor Program, but it helps them to be safer recreators in our community, and gives them more opportunities as they graduate and begin to look for careers in the industry,” said Outdoor Program Coordinator MacKenzie Holbrook.

Thanks to the endowment scholarship, the Outdoor Program has already awarded $2,000 worth of scholarships, allowing students to obtain their Wilderness First Responder and AIARE 1 - Avalanche Recreation 1 certifications.

This year, the Outdoor Program is hosting a Black-Tie Masquerade Gala and Silent Auction to support trip leaders through adding funds to the endowment scholarship. The event will take place on Friday, May 12, from 6-9pm on The Plaza. Tickets go on sale March 30 for $45 each.

The ticket price includes dinner, non-alcoholic drinks, beer, live music by Shea Bramer, a photo booth and a silent auction. Some of the silent auction items include a fully rigged 16' oar frame raft, a Stand-Up Paddle Board Package, tickets to the Palisade Bluegrass Festival, art created by Outdoor Program students and more!

All proceeds from the event will go directly back into the scholarship fund, providing more opportunities for students to become certified trip leaders and safer recreators in the community.

To purchase your ticket, please visit:


Written by Madelynn Fellet