Leadership Expedition to the Adirondacks

by Leadership Programs


Fri, Sep 1, 2017 7:00 AM –

Sun, Sep 3, 2017 7:00 PM

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Saranac Lakes--Transportation provided


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Leadership Expedition to the Adirondacks

Leadership Programs is excited to announce our second annual Leadership Expedition to the Adirondacks. Students will travel to the Saranac Lakes from September 1 - 3, 2017, where they’ll test and enhance their leadership skills on a three-day canoeing and camping trip. The expedition team will paddle during the day and camp at night, covering a total distance of around 15-20 miles.

The primary goals of this expedition are:

  • leadership development;
  • cohort development; and,
  • camping skills development.

Additional key tenets of the trip are:

  • this is a "leave no trace" wilderness experience; and,
  • this is a cellphone, alcohol, and substance-free expedition so students can be completely present through this shared learning experience.

On this unique expedition, students can expect to: 

  • experience both adversity and the natural beauty of the Adirondacks region;
  • take turns assuming full responsibility for the entire group; and,
  • receive real-time feedback on their leadership and followership efforts.

In short, this is a chance to practice, rather than just talk about, real leadership.

If you are interested in joining this expedition, please carefully review all of the following information. Online application forms will open in late August, after second-year students' classes resume. Please note that slots will be limited and we cannot guarantee everyone a slot.

Leadership Expeditions

Leadership Expeditions are a chance to leave Ithaca and dig in, full-time, to your leadership development. Expeditions are designed to give students the opportunity to go through the Johnson leadership learning cycle of instruction, experience, and review multiple times in an intensive, condensed timeframe.

September 1 to September 3, 2017, with a mandatory gear check and group gear packing session at 5:30pm on August 31. Students must be prepared to leave Ithaca at 7am on Friday, September 1, and should expect to return around 7pm on Sunday, September 3. Transportation is provided.

Eligibility: This expedition is open to all Ithaca-based, full-time residential students studying at Johnson. Please note: You must be comfortable in deep water and able to swim at least 300 meters without stopping in order to participate. No other previous canoeing or camping experience is necessary or required.

Program Fees: This expedition is being subsidized by Leadership Programs. Students will need to cover their lunches on the drive to and from the Adirondacks, and will also be asked to pay a non-refundable participant contribution of $100 to join the expedition. All other meals, plus group gear (tents, water filters, canoes, etc.) and sleeping bag and sleeping bag pad rentals for those students who require them will be provided. Some students may have to purchase or rent some individual gear (headlamp, hiking boots, rain gear, etc.) depending on what they already own; this will be at the student's expense. Discounts on rentals at the Cornell Outdoor Education Rental Center will be available for participants. More information will be provided if you are selected for the expedition team.

To learn more about the Saranac Lakes: The expedition team will travel through Upper Saranac Lake and the Lower and Middle Saranac Lakes in the Adirondacks. 

Graduation Credit: All full-time, Ithaca-based Johnson residential students are eligible to use up to 1.5 credit hours from Leadership Skills Program (LSP) and/or Managerial Skills Program (MSP) toward their MBA degree credit-hour requirements. Students who participate in this expedition will be awarded 0.3 LSP credits

Expedition Origins: This expedition was piloted in 2015 and led by Andrew Maia, class of 2016. As with the past two years, this expedition will be student-run, with four student TAs from the Outdoor Ventures board present to manage logistics and participants' rotational leadership assignments. Daily leadership, however, will be turned over to participants, with the TAs playing only a supportive role. Staff from Cornell Outdoor Education will also be on hand to teach canoeing skills and ensure participant safety. 

Questions? Please contact Laura Georgianna, executive director of leadership programs

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