What students say:
From Wilderness and Civilization I have
gained a new understanding of my home, my world and myself.
The program is a harmony of scientific knowledge dovetailed
with philosophy, ethics, and on the ground experience.
~Mark Ruby, Kalispell, Montana
Through the Wilderness and Civilization program I have
acquired a stronger understanding and a broader perspective
of myself and my relationship to the natural world. It has
sparked both a sense of responsibility and a passion to
learn what I can about the environment, the human relationship
to the environment, and my personal role in the environmental
Wilderness and Civ. has done more to equip me for “real
world” conservation than any regular class could have. I
have learned more about myself, my community, and the land
around me in one year than I had previously in my lifetime.
Through the program I gained a heightened sense of awareness
of the issues that involve myself and the community; an
understanding of the natural world that is deep enough to
be engaged but shallow enough to crave more; and relationships
and bonds that were born of common interests but are maintained
by shared aspirations.
It’s hard. It’s good. It’s tough. It’s worth it. Truthfully,
you may learn more than you want!
I have learned to listen to people more fully and with
an open mind. Also, I’ve been given the opportunity to express
myself fully. I feel my identity was always supported and
that helped me to develop it. I have left the program very
happy with myself and I have learned what is important to
me. I have found my niche so to speak.
The program was life changing. I now look at the works
differently. I see people as a part of nature and pay much
more attention to my environment.
The program gave me a better understanding of the natural
world, a belief in the need for “on-the-ground collaboration,
and a new perspective on indigenous peoples’ land rights.
It is challenging at times but in the end it is all worth
it; you will make lifetime friends.
Through Wilderness and Civ. I gained a tremendous amount
of knowledge about both wilderness and human interactions
with wilderness and wild places. I also gained an appreciation
for communities and everything it takes for them to function
and how improvements can be made. I feel as though I have
gained a sense of direction this year that I will be able
to apply wherever I end up.
The program is intense, captivating, amazing, community-filled.
A once in a lifetime experience. A rollercoaster of an education
where you are the driver. The most incredible educational
experience I’ve ever had, and will continue to have, as
it will stay with me forever.
Through the program I gained a closer connection to the
land-- my home and the natural environment-- and how I find
my place in each. And how others are influenced to interact
with the places they inhabit. Overall, a larger consciousness
about how to exist with the area I occupy.
Undoubtedly this is the most engaged, most interesting
and all-affecting, noblest cause for learning of any college
experience I’ve ever had. The program is a multi-disciplinary
exploration of the ways in which humans in Montana engage
their places at the boundaries of wilderness. This broadens
your own understanding of home, place and natural environment
and crystallizes your ethic toward a place.
Wilderness and Civilization is the best, most complete
academic program I have ever known. It has changed me so
profoundly. I finally feel like an empowered person, informed
and motivated, not afraid to create change and live in the
way my heart tells me.
~Julie Guthrie, Missoula, Montana
I have become better at making connections and seeing the
world around me in multiple ways. I have also gained many
friendships and amazing memories.
~Chelsey Robison, Pocatello, Idaho
Through Wilderness and Civilization I have gained a vast
knowledge of the natural world, communities, society, and
many issues involving the environment. From Native Americans
to gardening to environmental regulation, I now have a strong
understanding of many processes facing the world today.
The program planted seeds about how I'd like to live in
the future. My life was enriched greatly by the program.
~Andrew Henry, Denver, Colorado
Wilderness and Civilization has been life changing; I've
never felt so alive, open to change and aware.
~Beau Larkin, Missoula, Montana
Wilderness and Civilization is what I believe all education,
especially higher education should be-allowing and encouraging
students to make connections between disciplines/life areas,
thinking critically about the world we live in, and how
to cooperate to make positive change.
~Ryan Springer, New Cumberland, Pennsylvania
I wish all four years of college were as engaging as the
W&C program. I've learned more in one year than in all
of my previous school career.
~Leigh Ann Reynolds, Ventress, Louisiana
Wilderness and Civilization is what I'd hoped college would
be like. The context and content are so useful in living
and making good life choices, what could be better?
~Caroline Knickmeier, Greenleaf, Wisconsin
Nothing else has come close to bringing out such passion
and critical thought.
~Mark Thompson, Austin, Texas
¤ A year of life at its most intense. You actually get to examine your own beliefs. But is also a year of life at it most beautiful as you struggle and grow with a network of people you love more every day.
¤ The program helps you learn about yourself, you become a close caring family, and you have many great experiences together. The field trips are amazing and the people you will meet are interesting and have many experiences and ideas to talk about. The classes and internships are all great ways to learn and explore yourself.
¤ It is a very difficult program that is completely worth doing because of the people, the classes, the field trips, and personal growth.
¤ An intense yearlong education experience—inside and outside—where you learn immeasurable things about yourself and the world. You walk away with friends and memories that will last a lifetime.
¤ An engaging, emotional, environmental experience worth taking. Life changing.
¤ A wonderful exposure to environmental, political, social,
and natural issues surrounding Montana and the world. You
develop a family of twenty passionate, interested, and engaged
students. It’s a lesson on life, yourself and how to make
improvements for the future.
¤ Worth every minute. You’ll be challenged but rewarded. You’ll learn about yourself as much if not more than the subject matter; what could be more worthwhile.
¤ An intensive experience involving land/resource issues and the perspectives therein. You learn about your home, community, and most importantly, yourself. You can’t help but to see things in a new light.
¤ It is a great experience, you get what you put in.
¤ Hard work and lots of it; but rewarding.
¤ Life changing. I’ve never felt so alive, open to change, and aware.
¤ Learning that pervades your life beyond the classroom.