Editor’s Note: Victoria Cabal, director of the First Ascent Scholars program, talks about the group’s recent trip to Moab and what her students did in order to prepare for the adventure. First Ascent Scholars cultivates, encourages and enables academically focused students from socioeconomically disadvantaged backgrounds to attend the Eccles School, connect with the University of Utah, local and global community, and reach their full academic potential.

Victoria Cabal headshotOn Oct. 27, First Ascent Scholars took in the sunset at the Living Room trail to culminate their Parks, Recreation and Tourism (PRT) course. The course was developed as a partnership between the PRT department and the First Ascent Scholars program to help scholars build community, develop a sense of place in the world, and link outdoor recreation to the boardroom and beyond.

Through a series of classes, students gained an understanding of expedition planning, teamwork and adventure.

Pre-trip courses included understanding how outdoor recreation can directly relate to skills needed in the global economy, including communication, teamwork and problem solving. Scholars also participated in a ropes challenge course at the University Neuropsychiatric Inst