Adventure Leadership Institute™

Certificate Program

Course Offerings

Adventure Club

Upcoming Events


Connect with ALI


ALI Partners

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Adventure Club & Outings

Want some adventure in your life? Or maybe just the weekend? 

Join the Adventure Club!

This is a student led organization in association with the Adeventure Leadership Institute™ developed to bring students the opportunity to experience adventure in the outdoors and connect with other students! As a member of the Adventure Club, you are granted access to all the trips and events held through the club from rock climbing to snowshoeing, whitewater rafting to backpacking, the Adventure Club has it all. Have that perfect trip or event idea? Let us know, and we can help make it happen!

The Adventure Club contributes to the educational mission of the university by offering learning opportunities for students pursuing leadership and facilitation certifications through the Adventure Leadership Institute.

The OSU Adventure Club is founded on the principles of experiential learning, using human powered outdoor pursuits to expand knowledge, leadership, service and community.

Join the Adventure Club

Just want to go on that certain trip or attend that specific event?

Great! No commitment necessary, be as involved as you want to be!

Don't have experience? No problem!

Our certified trip leaders and coordinators have gone through rigorous training and have extensive documented field experience through the Adventure Leadership Institute and are there to support you in any way they can!

Backpackers standing on a rock ledge.


The Adventure Club provides a rich learning opportunity for students in the Adventure Leadership Institute to practice and apply their developing skills as leaders and facilitators of adventure pursuits. Executive positions and activity leadership is provided by members of ALI™ in pursuit of leadership certificates.


Participation in Adventure Club meetings, activities and events are open to currently enrolled students at Oregon State University. Active club members shall have attended two consecutive meetings and will have paid the mandated club dues.  

Note: Must be current OSU Student or RecSports Member 

Club Advisory

The OSU Adventure Club is a program of the Department of Recreational Sports with advisory from the Adventure Leadership Institute.

Contact the Club


Call: Adventure Leadership Institute, 541-737-4254

Facebook: Oregon State Adventure Club

ALI Certificate Program

As you work your way through the course offerings within the ALI™, you will work towards fulfilling the requirements for various certificate levels. The theory behind the certificates is that as you progress through each level, you will take classes that help you become both competent with the technical skills involved as well as learn to be a leader in experien­tial education and outdoor recreation.

There are two certificates that a student in the ALI can participate:

Below is information related to both tracks. Hover over the images to find interactive content related to each certificate.


Adventure Leadership Certificate

Level One:

The Level one certificate is an introduction to the ALI program and serves to create a foundation that subsequent classes will build upon. The courses to complete a level one certificate are experience based and will serve to introduce the skills and theory behind later course offerings.

Level Two:

The Level two certificate is less based on activity courses and includes more theoretical and academic components. In order to complete a Level two certificate you will be required to gain documented leadership experience through assisting in the delivery of field experiences and activity courses.

Level Three:

Those who complete the level three certificate will deliver the material for some of the activity courses, while under supervision of the program advisor. The program advisor will work with you each week to ensure that the content and delivery of materials for activity courses is appropriate for the course. While working towards the completion of the level three certificate, you will also be responsible for leading and documenting field experience.


After you move through the various levels of the certificate, you will be left with clear documentation as to your experiences and certifications in adventure leadership. As well, depending on what level you have achieved, it is possible that you have earned professional level certifications in your area of focus and wilderness medicine.




Conservation Leadership Certificates

The Conservation Leadership Certificate (CLC) is comprised of a series of field-based classes that prepare students to become leaders in backcountry environments and front-country conservation efforts. At the heart of the CLC curriculum are three multi-disciplinary courses that meld freshwater ecology, creative and critical environment writings, and fly fishing.

The first course is focused on trout and their habitats and is designed to rapidly introduce students to current and historical conversations associated with sport fishing.

The second is focused on steelhead and their spawning grounds and asks students to begin to participate in the ecological conversations they learned about in course one.

The third course translates the academic work of the first two courses into non-academic public and private spheres through an internship with a concentration in research, advocacy, or restoration. Internship partners include Trout Unlimited, the Institute for Applied Ecology, the USGS, and many others.

ALI™ Calendar

ALI™ Instructors and Staff

Shell, Malinda
Human Group Dynamics Instructor

Kristen Atwater

Atwater, Kristen
Mountaineering, Ice Climbing & Backpacking Instructor

Ty Atwater

Atwater, Ty
Climbing & Wilderness Skills Coordinator and Instructor

Mark Belson

Belson, Mark
Challenge Course & Faclitation Coordinator and Instructor

Clark, Marco

Wilderness First Aid Instructor

Sara Dalotto

Dalotto, Sara
ALI Support staff

Sheila Evans

Evans, Sheila
Club and Custom Trips Coordinator
Intro to Adventure Programs Instructor

Aaron Hartz

Hartz, Aaron
Mountain Rescue and Avalanche Instructor

Jennie Moore

Moore, Jennie
Snowshoe and Hiking Instructor

Josh Norris

Norris, Josh
ALI Director

Adventure Leadership Institute Partners


Stone Hearth Open Learning Opportunities (SOLO )

SOLO Wilderness

Stone Hearth Open Learning Opportunities (SOLO) is the longest continually operational Wilderness Medicine Provider in the United States.  Both our Wilderness Frist Aid (WFA) and Wilderness Frist Responder (WFR) courses are taught by SOLO instructors on staff.

Professional Climbing Instructors Association (PCIA)


The PCIA was formed in 2008 to help meet the need for professional climbing instruction in the United States.  Because of their strong focus on educational techniques and proficiency the ALI has chosen to be a partner organization from the beginning.  In addition to training our climbing staff to PCIA standards, the ALI is also regional training hub for PCIA course providers.

American Canoe Association (ACA)

American Canoe Association

The American Canoe Association is the United States largest paddling organization.  With course offerings in a variety of disciplines and a focus on high quality instruction the ACA is a great partner organization for the ALI.  Not only does the ACA certify instructors in the teaching of paddle sports they also are an active voice for paddler access and rights in regional and national government.

Leave No Trace (LNT)

leave No Trace

Leave No Trace is a nonprofit organization dedicated to the education and empowerment of outdoor recreationalists and educators.  With two LNT Master Educators on staff the ALI has partnered with LNT to help provide a well-rounded outdoor experience for our students and to help them realize the impact that our recreational activities may have.

Association for Challenge Course Technology (ACCT)


The Association for Challenge Course Technology is the standard setting body for the challenge course industry.  At the ALI our challenge course staff are trained to the ACCT standards and our facility was designed and is maintained by ACCT sanctioned builders.  In addition to providing standards for the ALI challenge course operations the ACCT provides a voice for the challenge course industry and is active in the research side of experiential education. 

Adventure Leadership Institute™ Raft Guide School

Raft Guide School ALI

Become a confident and competent paddle raft guide. ALI is offering a week-long course that focuses on developing raft guide skills.

Become a confident and competent paddle raft guide. ALI is offering a week-long course that focuses on developing raft guide skills.



Raft Guide

Adventure Living-Learning Community (ALLC)

Adventure Living-Learning Community

Whether you are new to outdoor adventures or you’re developing skills in any number of outdoor pursuits, this learning community will stimulate and challenge you. In this community, students develop lifelong leadership qualities in combination with environmental ethics and outdoor skills.

If you want to establish friendships, explore the landscapes of Oregon and live in a community that shares your passion for the outdoors… this is the place for you!

Adventure Living Portrait under stars


Residents of the Adventure Living-Learning Community (ALLC) will learn new skills in a collaborative environment under the mentorship of ALI faculty and student staff.

Participants will;

Experiential Learning, Reflection and ALLC Programs

The Adventure Living-Learning Community offers students a dynamic experiential learning environment. Students embark on compelling and interesting experiences which are a catalyst for personal growth, foster inter-personal development and create a culture for robust academic inquiry.

Experiential learning uses reflective processes that guide students to examine personal values and relationships with others in their community. Reflection is a critical component in forming conscious and lasting cognitive structures.


River Raft teams


Participant Expectations

Members of the Adventure Living-Learning Community (ALLC) are instrumental in contributing to the environment for themselves and their peers. In such, community members are expected to fulfill the following;


Team building, aerial perspective of Team

About ALLC Residents

The ALLC Community consists of 40-50 students from any course of study at OSU.

ALLC students are

Challenge Course



The Adventure Leadership Institute's™ Challenge Course Program provides unique and engaging teambuilding experiences to develop cohesiveness among group members. Activities range from ground based community building and problem-solving to walking across a balance beam or zip lining 30 feet in the air.



Each program to best fit your groups’ specific needs and objectives. We have designed programs for groups ranging from six to 850 people.



Portable, Community Builder — 2 Hours

Through the use of play and problem solving initiatives ALI™ facilitators will lead your group through a sequence of individual and group challenge activities. is program type generally occurs at an offsite location away from the challenge course.

Short Day Team, Low Course Elements — 4 Hours

This, program occurs at our challenge course facility and is similar to our Portables program however this experience generally utilizes various low challenge course elements to create a supportive environment among group members.

Short Day, High Course Elements — 4 Hours

Through the use of ground based activities, low course elements and high course elements this program allows participants the opportunity to practice success and choice within their personal comfort level. is fast paced program is by far our most popular.

Full Day, High Course Elements — 6 Hours

This program utilizes portable games and problem solving initiatives as well as both low and high challenge course elements to engage your group in a focused and intentional teambuilding experience.



A certificate from the Adventure Leadership Institute is a great resume builder and the experience you get while working towards the certificate are unlike any other experiences available on campus. Learn more about this on our certificates page.

Program Options

Portable Mini Program (2 hours)

We bring a variety of props to your location in order to do games, initiatives and community building.

Team Program (4 hours)

This program consists of games, initiatives and low elements at the OSU Challenge Course.

High Program (6 hours)

This program combines the low elements and high ropes at the OSU Challenge Course.

Program Themes

Recreational Programs

Recreational programs are designed for groups to have fun and get to know each other better. This often results in participants building community, enhancing camaraderie, and beginning to establish the foundation of a group.

Educational Programs

Educational programs are designed for groups to have fun, get to know each other, and to focus on group development. These programs create awareness of group problem solving strategies and to develop individual leadership skills.

Developmental Programs

Developmental programs are designed to incorporate fun and group development. In addition, these programs emphasize taking a group’s current state of performance to a higher level. These programs are ideal for newly formed or intact work groups and sport teams.

Use Guidelines

Challenge by Choice Philosophy

The OSU Challenge Course abides by a Challenge by Choice philosophy, which enables each participant to determine the type and level of participation that is most appropriate for him/her. While we encourage each group member to challenge themselves, we recognize that not everyone will want to and/or be able to participate in every activity in the same manner. Individuals may choose to contribute to the planning and strategizing and not necessarily the physical action of any given activity. Utilizing the Challenge by Choice philosophy allows everyone to be involved and to challenge themselves, but at their own pace and in their own way. We will make every effort to design programs with the specific goals, needs, interests and concerns in mind.

Group Size

We’ve established minimum (6) and maximum (40) group sizes as a general guideline. These numbers are flexible, depending on the specific goals of the program, the maturity of the group, and the availability of support staff. Much of our preparation (and cost) is dependent on the number of participants in your group; so it is especially important to relay any changes in this area as quickly as possible. The number of participants that you indicate when making your reservation is the number we will use for billing purposes. We will make every effort to accommodate an increase in group size, but cannot guarantee our ability to do so. Please note that if your group size increases, your balance due may increase to reflect the actual group size. If your number of participants decreases, please refer to the cancellation/refund policy below.

Assumption of Risk

All groups are required to document an assumption of risk before participating in one of our programs. Depending on the type of group, you will be asked to complete/submit one or more of the following:

Certificate of Liability Insurance If your group comes from a formalized organization, outside of the OSU community, you will be asked to submit written proof of liability insurance coverage. Specifics will be provided in an insurance clause in your Facilities, Programs & Services Agreement.

Facilities, Programs & Services Agreement

Groups that are not a part of the Oregon Higher Education system must complete this formal agreement with Oregon State University and return it at least two weeks prior to the beginning of their program. OSU (and other Oregon University) groups are exempt from this requirement.

Liability Waivers

Each and every participant must complete this form prior to delivery of your program. This includes staff accompanying the group. Please note that any participants under the age of 18 are required to have a parent’s or guardian’s signature.

Cancellation / Refund Policy

Programs run rain or shine, but may be cancelled by the Challenge Course due to severe weather conditions. In such cases, we will call you to discuss rescheduling. If the Challenge Course must cancel your program, you will not be charged for any part of the preparation or delivery.

If it becomes necessary for you to cancel your program, please do so with as much notice as possible. We begin planning your program as soon as you schedule with us, but early notification of cancellation can still save us a lot of work. If you cancel any or all of your participants fewer than five business days before your scheduled program, you will be billed for the entire amount of your balance due.

Course Offerings

Disaster and Incident Response Team (D.I.R.T.)



DIRT is a joint effort to provide training in disaster planning and management for the University and surrounding community. OSU DIRT enables a community of veterans, service-oriented students and first responders with a framework to organize, train and prepare for all types of disasters. OSU also provides an academic setting to enhance disaster preparedness and management training for students, community members and Team Rubicon volunteers.


OSU DIRT is uniquely positioned to effect a high level of training and preparedness due to current course offerings of Wilderness/Disaster Medicine training (WFA and WFR), as well as the newly adopted PAC 325 Community Emergency Response Training (CERT) curriculum offered as an academic class.  In partnership with Team Rubicon, DIRT provides a recruitment and training function for Team Rubicon’s Region X.

Our partners:


We meet once every month during the Academic year. Meetings typically follow a format of an organizational meeting for the first 20-30 minutes, followed by drills, seminars, trainings, scenarios and guest speakers. To get involved, register here:



Here are a few example topics:

Team Member levels:

1. Supporting Member  (observer)

       a. Attend one meeting per term

       b. Observation and potential support role during crisis

2. Training Member  (deployable)

a. Currently or working towards WFA/WFR, PAC CERT, and/or military service background, and minimum attendance of 2 meetings per term.

       b. Participates in monthly drills and deploys as a member of OSU Team Rubicon

3. Team Lead

       a. Current WFR and completion of PAC CERT

b. Assumes a leadership role in training and as a deployed member of OSU Team Rubicon serves as a team leader during response and recovery operations.



Introducing the Adventure Living-Learning Community


We are proud to introduce the Adventure Living-Learning Community (ALLC) where students can develop lifelong leadership qualities.

We are proud to introduce the Adventure Living-Learning Community (ALLC) where students can develop lifelong leadership qualities.

Outdoor Equipment Rental & Bike/Ski Shop

Outdoor Equipment Rental

You can view a list of our bike, ski and snowboard shop maintenance and sale item prices, as well as a list of rentable equipment in our "Outdoor Equipment Rental" PDF.

Located at the east entry to Dixon Recreation Center, the Adventure Leadership Institute™ includes outdoor equipment rental; maps; river and snow reports; and the bike, ski, and snowboard shop.

Equipment rental is available to all RecSports students and members. We offer equipment for a number of activities, including backpacking, ice climbing, mountaineering, rafting, rock climbing, bouldering and more.

Gear rental is available for both personal and class use. RecSports students and members have full access to rental equipment. Select items are made available to the OSU community as well.

Stop by the ALI™ desk with any questions on rental or gear availability.

Parking note: Some rental equipment requires curbside pick up. During baseball season, parking outside of the Adventure Leadership Institute is limited for home games. We encourage you to reference the Oregon State baseball schedule when deciding on when to stop by for pick up.

Bike, Ski & Snowbard Service:

Our bike, ski and snowboard shop offers maintenance options and has several items for sale.

Hours Information can be found on our hours page

Those in need of a basic tune up, full tune or complete tune can have their bike serviced at Dixon Recreation Center. Accordingly, the bike shop offers flat tire repair, brake adjustments, gear adjustments and wheel truing.

Ski and snowboard service options include new ski tune, quick tune, quick tune plus and full tune.

Bike Loan Program:

Please fill out the Bike Loan Request Form here:

Bike Loan Request

Weekly or day requests please contact ALI directly. 

Bike LoanInterested in participating in our Bike Loan Program? The Oregon State Bike Loan Program is a collaborative effort between the OSU Student Sustainability Initiative, OSU Sustainability Office and the OSU Recreational Sports Department. The program provides OSU students, faculty and staff access to low-cost bike rentals.

Programs & Facilities

The Adventure Leadership Institute is a growing program located at the east wing of Dixon Recreation Center.

You can find more information about our programs and facilities at the links below:

Equipment Rental, Bike & Ski Shop
Adventure Club
Climbing Centers
Challenge Course

The Gear Room Sessions

The Gear Room Sessions

A series by ALI students

Welcome to the Gear Room Sessions, a Behind-the-scenes look into the thoughts and interests of ALI students. The Gear Room is where the rubber meets the road for many of us at the ALI.It is where we prepare for our classes and adventures, and where we dry our gear when we return. When things are dirty and broken, it is where we have the means to repair our equipment and create solutions.

In the Gear Room, we debrief those programs and classes…reflecting our success and opportunities for improvement. Here we recognize the application of our theories, realize who we are as leaders, friends, community and beings. Join us on the series as we talk about the connections and thoughts we have regarding our lives and our journey of adventure.
Check back often as we continue to add conversations.

Anya (The Forrest) Psychology Major

 Todd (Redemption) Natural Resources Major


Sami (Curiosity) PhD Candidate Industrial Engineering

 Stormy (Adventure Art) Exercise Sport Science Major

Theories, Values, and Foundations

We are educators who develop and change students using experience as our textbook and the outdoors as our classroom.

Our Philosophy:

The Adventure Leadership Institute utilizes theories which serve as the foundation for program design and outcomes. Research dictates that educational outcomes and developmental outcomes are equally essential and intertwined in the endeavors of higher education.  Our programs offer intentional, purposeful and directed experiences that enhance learning and contribute to the scholarly development of Oregon State University students.

Our Core Theories:


Click here for a more complete explanation of our theories

Our Foundations and Values:




Leadership through adventure


ALI classroom

Our Goals:

Click here to learn more about our history.
Click here to learn about our start.


What is ALI™?


What is the Adventure Leadership Institute (ALI)™?

What is ALI™?

Originally founded in 1947, the Adventure Leadership Institute™ is the authority in adventure leadership education, providing awe-inspiring, transformative experiences to more than 9,500 students each year.

These students, learn in the wildest and most remote classrooms in the Pacific Northwest — from the forest, to the high desert, to rugged cascade peaks and glaciers. Graduates are active leaders with lifelong leadership-oriented and environmental ethics and outdoor skills.

ALI also offers informal and customized experiences through the ALI Challenge Course, the Climbing Centers, Bike and Ski Shop and the Adventure Club. ALI is the regional hub for SOLO Wilderness Medicine, the leading teacher of wilderness medicine worldwide, the Professional Climbing Instructors Association, and the ACA Raft Guide and Whitewater Rescue curriculum.

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Check out ALI's photo gallery

How do I get involved? 

Work towards a certificate in Adventure Leadership


Take ALI™ classes for credit – activity, leadership, professional certification


Take advantage of programs and services

No experience necessary!

Contact ALI Director Josh Norris for more details.


© Copyright 2008-2013 Adventure Leadership Institute, Oregon State University, All Rights Reserved.