Outdoor Nation Campus Challenge Inspires More Than 40,000 Outdoor Activities

Crowns First-Ever “National Outdoor Champion”

Outdoor Nation Campus Challenge
Fueled by The North Face, Campus Challenge engaged thousands of college students and campus community members in outdoor recreation — demonstrating potential of initiative
The Outdoor Foundation
The Outdoor Foundation

Washington, DC -(Ammoland.com)- For the first time, ten universities and colleges took part in the Outdoor Nation Campus Challenge, going head-to-head to determine which school is the most outdoorsy in America.

Think Mother Nature meets March Madness. After eight weeks, Outdoor Nation is pleased to announce almost 44,000 outdoor activities were logged by 8,390 participants, with many universities reporting a major surge in the campus-wide interest in outdoor recreation. A full report of the challenge is available, just click here.

Though individual competition was steep, the clear National Outdoor Champion and winner of the competition, was the College of Saint Benedict and Saint John’s University in Collegeville, Minnesota. Collectively, CSB/SJU logged 16,289 activities and signed up 1,906 people who participated in the Challenge. The university will receive an awesome gear bank sponsored by The North Face that includes items like technical packs, tents and sleeping bags as well as sleeping pads, camping pillows, water bottles and more. The school will also have a campus-wide celebration to honor their accomplishment.

“These ten schools demonstrated the extraordinary power and potential that college students have to motivate and mobilize their peers to get active outdoors,” said Chris Fanning executive director of the Outdoor Foundation. “Next year, building on this success, we plan to engage 50 colleges and activate 75,000 young people in outdoor recreation. We hope additional outdoor industry companies will join us in this exciting opportunity to reach the next generation of outdoor enthusiasts and consumers.”

Built on the belief that lasting cultural change must be led by those most affected by the outcome, Outdoor Nation empowers young people, primarily college students, to mobilize and motivate peers to get outdoors — enabling these influential leaders to redefine outdoor recreation as more relevant and reviving a passion for the outdoor lifestyle. The Outdoor Nation Campus Challenge capitalizes on school spirit as a way to reach diverse, new audiences and reinforce a healthy lifestyle message at age when many college students are forming the habits, values and brand allegiances they will carry the rest of their lives.

“Having a truly great experience in the outdoors is the first spark that can ignite a lifelong passion for nature and protecting the places we all love to play,” said Ann Krcik, director of Outdoor Exploration at The North Face. “The North Face is proud to be a founding partner of the Outdoor Nation Campus Challenge which enables students and their communities to experience the outdoors in new ways. These events are helping us create a global movement of outdoor exploration.”

Five individuals from across the country were named Outsiders of the Year – each with 285 approved outdoor activities logged. Winners included Pearce Jensen from CSB/SJU, Nathan Miller and Vincent McClain from Michigan Technological University, Emma Gummerson from Appalachian State University and James Ablang from Cal State Long Beach. Each of these students will be outfitted by The North Face and will have the opportunity to intern with Outdoor Nation during the 2015 ON Campus Challenge.

The schools that competed in the 2014 Challenge include:

  • Appalachian State University
  • California State University
  • Long Beach
  • College of Saint Benedict and Saint John’s University
  • George Mason University
  • James Madison University, Michigan Technological University
  • University of Central Florida
  • University of Iowa
  • University of Wisconsin-Madison
  • Spelman College.

In 2015, Outdoor Nation will build in its foundation of great college work, expanding activities to 50 campuses across the US. The organization will also open the Challenge opportunity to any school that wishes to compete. Information will be available in the spring of 2015 at outdoornation.org with the competition kicking off in the fall.

About the Outdoor Foundation & Outdoor Nation

The Outdoor Foundation is a not-for-profit organization dedicated to inspiring and growing future generations of outdoor enthusiasts. Through groundbreaking research, action oriented outreach, and education programs, the Foundation works with partners to mobilize a major cultural shift that leads all Americans to the great outdoors. In 2010, the Foundation launched Outdoor Nation, a pioneering initiative that aims to empower young leaders to champion the outdoors on campuses and in communities across the United States. For more information visit: OutdoorFoundation.org and OutdoorNation.org.