Bridge Adventure will include outdoor excursions as a vehicle for developing perseverance and socially responsible leadership in individuals, as well as a strong sense of community among cohorts. Students will follow a pattern of preparation, execution, and reflection for each excursion. Undergraduates will participate in three types of experiential learning trips each year: adventure excursions, alternative service breaks, and mentored field research.
Mentored Field Research
Each Bridge Adventure student will participate in mentored research, including a field data collection campaign and a group presentation of findings at a research conference. Students will select a research project that interests them from among options presented by TTU faculty. Opportunities to engage in mentored research during undergraduate studies improve student retention and help students see graduate degrees as more attainable.
Each year, Bridge Adventure cohorts will complete a service learning trip by providing community service for a partner organization while developing a deeper understanding of environmental stewardship. Studies show that service learning improves academic performance and self-confidence in students while providing an opportunity for meaningful civic engagement. Potential service learning activities that our first cohort of Bridge Adventure students might perform include working on a farm that delivers fresh produce to those in need, caring for land, water, and wildlife on protected lands, or helping to manage ecotourism at a national park.
A hallmark of the Bridge Adventure program will be an annual excursion in the outdoors where cohorts will experience three to six days of high adventure. Possible activities may include hiking, backpacking, climbing, and canoeing in the backcountry. These experiences are expected to develop grit, self-confidence, team building, and leadership among Bridge Adventure students. Like the service learning and mentored research trips, adventure excursions will be provided at no cost to Bridge Adventure students.