Every year, in remembrance and celebration of their son, Dr. Stuart Schleien and his wife Dana hand out the Jason David Schleien Scholarship. The $2,000 award goes to one University of Minnesota Recreation Administration major to help support a semester-long internship at Wilderness Inquiry. This year’s winner, 22-year-old Sara Hansen, joined Wilderness Inquiry during this past summer semester with 10 other interns. Sara did a lot of different jobs at Wilderness Inquiry, but her biggest project was working as a mentor and liaison for Outdoor Career Academy attendees. The Outdoor Career Academy is a credentialing and skill-building program that engages teenagers to build life-long connections to the outdoors and a pathway to employment. The work made a big impact on Hansen.
“This summer was unlike any other summer I’ve ever experienced. After graduating, I was granted the life-altering experience of working with an incredible organization, Wilderness Inquiry. For three months I was exposed to an array of different opportunities for learning and growing, all of which helped me with my future career. I cannot be more thankful for gaining such incredible perspicacity. “
“I was an important person to the kids and they looked up to me a lot. Being a mentor was a lot of responsibility, but it taught me a lot more than I ever imagined. I am incredibly thankful for the kids because they showed me what it’s like to be a leader. I know my future will entail working with kids in a very similar environment, as I was ecstatic to go to work every single day.“
“The experience with Wilderness Inquiry was one I will never forget. I believe I solidified my passion while working with the organization. I gained friends, memories, experience, and new skills. The things I took away from this experience I would not be able to find anywhere else. I can hardly put to words how beyond grateful I am for this outstanding experience.”
Learn more about Wilderness Inquiry’s internship opportunities on our website.