Newsletter: Spring 2017, Issue 1

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Another Amazing Outdoor Odyssey Season

February 23, 2017 | Spring 2017 | Issue 3


In this issue:

Cornell Outdoor Education Seeks Inclusion

Cornell Tree Climbing expedition to the Republic of Georgia

ADK Instructor Training

Odyssey Reunion

45 Years Strong-Help!

Two Plus Two Equals Four


Cornell Outdoor Education Seeks Inclusion


Angela Winfield, the director of Inclusion and Workforce Diversity, excels in two extraordinary climbs to the top of the Lindseth wall with Rob Cook, the biking and special programs director in COE. “The climbs were no different than the hundreds of others made by Cornell community members – except that Winfield is blind.” As Cook guides Winfield to the path towards up top, Winfield demonstrates to COE staff the possibilities of expanding their impact on everyone of all backgrounds and abilities. The climb represents the very essence of the COE mission, which is to develop teamwork and growth for the entire

Read the whole story here


Cornell Tree Climbing Expedition to the Republic of Georgia

Last summer, Dave Katz and Weston Forster of Cornell Tree Climbing Institute partnered on an expedition to the Republic of Georgia. Traveling with documentary filmmaker Ben Roif and collaborating with organizations such as World Wildlife Fund Caucasus the Trans Caucasian Trail Association, and the Agency of Protected Areas in Georgia, they climbed canopy forests expanding from Azerbaijan frontier to western border of the Russian Federation. The goal was to build understanding of the issues the forests face in order to develop future conservation projects.

Read more here


ADK Instructor Training


ADK Training 1

For some, mid-winter is all about hibernation. For our COE winter Instructor Training crew, it was all about getting deep into the Adirondacks for a long weekend of adventure and good times. Led by Rob Cook, the experienced team included George Black, Liana Margolese, Greg Nostrand, Rebecca Stamp, Camille Rucker and Bob Chiang. And don’t let the sunshine and smiles Noonmark peak group photo fool you, the ice climbing was pretty arduous with it’s own weather challenges. COE delivers advanced trainings to further develop our instructors each season. If you’d like to help support more advanced trainings like this one, please consider making a gift to COE this year.

ADK Training 1


Odyssey Reunion


Late January blew in the start of a new semester as well as three intrepid hikers and their families. One of those hikers, Corky Lowe had now fully recovered from a serious ankle injury which he endured while on the trail in the Green Mountains of Vermont last August. He was joined by fellow hikers Bill Buccine and Herb Armstrong. The three had never been to Ithaca or Cornell University. They had good reasons to visit, having requested the chance to reunite with the Odyssey group that had, by chance, come to find Corky soon after he injured himself after slipping on some rocks in the rain. Over the next 8-hours they worked together to rescue Corky and evacuate him to a nearby hospital. All it took was 8-hours in unforgiving conditions on a narrow, steep and slippery trail, passing the litter hand over hand down the mountainside with Corky strapped in.

We were pleased to host a reunion dinner for the all the Odyssey students and guides, as well as the Odyssey Coordinators, Corky, Bill, Herb and their families. Over the course of the evening Corky, a retired military Colonel and 30-year Boy Scout troop leader, took things well in hand. He recounted a number of stories and made it clear that the group did exactly what many others would have done, while at the same time, they were in a unique position to be of service and they stepped up when it was needed most.

"I'm here to say...when the rubber meets the mud, once you take action, you're committed. You weren't counting on three times hiking that trail, one would have been more than sufficient...what you did was remarkable." - CL



45 Years Strong- Help!

It’s stories like these that affirm all that COE has accomplished over the first 45-years. To all our students, instructors, staff and alumni, we say thank you for keeping the level of success and commitment so high, and so true to our mission. For every student who has the chance to share in a COE experience, and every alum who goes on to build on those lessons and memories, we know the power of the outdoors to shape character and make the difference between years in school and a real education.

Please take a moment and consider making a gift to COE, a gift that will make a direct impact on students and our programs. There are three immediate ways you can help:


  1. Contact us during our Phonathon, next Monday, February 27th, from 7-10 pm EST. We’ll have many students on the phones reaching out to talk to you, to thank you, and to share stories about what they teach and what they’ve learned. And in a fun twist, we are giving you the number to call us too! What a surprise when the phone rings in our Phonathon room. Make the phone ring and make a bunch of instructors smile! 607–254-4475. Our goal, to raise $10,000.

  2. Cornell Giving Day – midnight to midnight on Tuesday, March 14th, or Pi Day as in 3.14. This is a big one because we have the chance to reach $7,500 in bonus cash! All we need is 75+ folks to make a gift at midnight or so because we’re competing with the other varsity teams. Have you ever wanted to say that COE beat most varsity teams in a match? Well this is our chance to do just that. Please help us with this effort as it would mean a lot to receive a $7,500 bonus and there’s much we could do with that. Including providing more Wilderness First Aid to our instructors, replacing our aging gear, like tents and stoves, and supporting more instructor training

  3. Share Your Stories! You can learn more on our COE Facebook, where we’ve posted an Event called Giving Day. And while you’re there, please post a photo or story from the “good old days.” We’d love to share tales and collect more photos and memories with your help.




Two Plus Two Equals Four




We’re thrilled to share the wonderful news that Becky and Matt Cowburn are the proud new parents of twins. Lucy Jane and Olin Clark arrived Tuesday, January 24th, landing softly in the warm embrace of their parents.



Phillips Outdoor Program Center
B01 Bartels Hall, Campus Road
Cornell University, Ithaca, NY 14853

607-255-6183 | Team and Leadership: 254-7474
Climbing Wall: 254-8255 | Gear: 255-1807