Brooke Ortel

Brooke is a runner and writer who enjoys finding adventure in the everyday. True to her island roots, she loves sunshine, that salty ocean smell, and the sound of waves against the shore.

Recent Posts

Instructor Marco Johnson Gives Gear Patrol Tips on Building Snow Shelters

Posted by Brooke Ortel on December 18, 2018 5:12:32 PM MST

Getting ready for the winter season, Gear Patrol consulted NOLS instructor Marco Johnson on how to build snow shelters. A senior instructor, Marco has plenty of experience teaching students how to construct snow caves and quinzee huts on NOLS winter courses.

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Georgetown MBA Students Reflect on Rocky Mountain Leadership Trek

Posted by Brooke Ortel on December 17, 2018 9:36:45 AM MST

Photo by Eric Page.

In August 2018, nine students from Georgetown’s McDonough School of Business backpacked through Wyoming’s Wind River Range on an eight-day NOLS Custom Education expedition. Students reported that participating in a guided leadership progression in the outdoors was a valuable complement to learning in a traditional classroom setting.

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Naval Academy Midshipman and NOLS Grad Receives Marshall Scholarship

Posted by Brooke Ortel on December 14, 2018 10:39:46 AM MST

Photo by Ari Bruns.

U.S. Naval Academy senior and NOLS Yukon grad Anne Richter was recently awarded the prestigious Marshall Scholarship in recognition of her outstanding academic achievement. An engineering major, Richter will pursue a master’s degree in additive manufacturing and advanced manufacturing at the University of Sheffield, U.K. before entering nuclear power school to train as a naval submariner.

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Joe Austin Receives AEE Servant Leader Award

Posted by Brooke Ortel on December 12, 2018 9:32:37 AM MST

Photo courtesy of the Association of Experiential Education.

On Thursday, November 8, NOLS Health Review Manager Joe Austin received the 2018 Servant Leader Award from the Association of Experiential Education (AEE). Presented at the annual AEE conference, this award recognizes an individual who has demonstrated excellent active leadership in the field of experiential education. Criteria for nomination include commitment to the highest level of ethical practices, dedication to furthering experiential education, and embodiment of the principle that “how and why” is just as important as “what will be done.”

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Naval Academy Midshipman and NOLS Grad Receives Rhodes Scholarship

Posted by Brooke Ortel on November 30, 2018 1:42:34 PM MST

Photo by Kiira Antenucci

U.S. Naval Academy senior and NOLS Alaska grad Margaret Dods was recently awarded a Rhodes Scholarship in recognition of her academic achievement and excellent leadership skills. The Naval Academy’s 52nd Rhodes Scholar, Dods will pursue a masters in philosophy at Oxford before completing her service in the Marine Corps.

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The Power of Active Followership—On the Ocean and in the Office

Posted by Brooke Ortel on November 26, 2018 10:27:49 AM MST

NOLS grad Meredith Lind discovered the power of active followership while sea kayaking in the Marlborough Sounds during her semester in New Zealand. Now a software consultant and developer, Meredith frequently applies the concept of active followership in the office, recognizing that sometimes asking thoughtful questions can be just as informative as years of experience.

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NOLS Cookery Wins 2018 National Outdoor Book Award

Posted by Brooke Ortel on November 20, 2018 4:39:28 PM MST

The NOLS Cookery, edited by NOLS Rocky Mountain Rations Manager Claudia Pearson, won the “Classic” category of the 2018 National Outdoor Book Awards. Now in its seventh edition, the Cookery is chock-full of iconic NOLS dishes like backcountry pizza and cinnamon rolls—as well as tips on nutrition and backcountry cooking techniques.

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Branksome Hall Students Build Character and Climb Mountains with NOLS

Posted by Brooke Ortel on November 19, 2018 4:09:11 PM MST

This summer, two rising seniors at Branksome Hall school received scholarships to fund month-long NOLS expeditions of their choice. One student learned to mountaineer and whitewater canoe in the Yukon, while the other backpacked and sea kayaked her way across Alaska. Both returned home with newfound confidence in their leadership abilities.

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Winterline Students Reflect on Their NOLS Experience

Posted by Brooke Ortel on November 15, 2018 11:07:49 AM MST

As part of their 2018 gap year experience, Winterline students backpacked through the Gila National Forest on an eight-day NOLS expedition. Reflecting on their course, students touched on themes of leadership, tolerance for adversity, appreciation for the natural world—and fun.

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NOLS Med Kit Rated Top Gift for Outdoorsy Friends

Posted by Brooke Ortel on November 2, 2018 8:34:43 AM MDT

For former park ranger Mark Kaufman, the NOLS Med Kit 4.0 makes the short list of recommended gifts for outdoorsy friends. Like wool socks, a good light, and water filtration devices, a NOLS med kit is a must-have for backcountry trips.

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