• Katie Wozniak

Colleges Take On Outdoor Nation Campus Challenge

On September 18, was the first day college campuses across the nation began to compete in the Outdoor Nation Campus Challenge. Outdoor Nation is the largest and most active community of young people, particularly college students, encouraging outdoor participation and recreation. Students a part of Outdoor Nation attend colleges across the country, making the group very wide and diverse. Outdoor Nation hopes to get more young people involved in outdoor activities, leading a major cultural shift. They noticed that college students spend hours on screens and only minutes outside. Wanting to change this, they created the Campus Challenge.

The University of St. Francis is taking part of the 2017 challenge and is encouraging everyone to get involved. The Outdoor Campus Challenge begins with downloading their free Campus Challenge App. Anyone can download this app and get involved, from students and faculty, to alumni and parents! Once one's personal information is entered and a school is chosen, it is time to start logging activities. By simply taking a picture of yourself and offering a brief description, Outdoor Nation rewards points to individuals and schools based on the activity. The most important part of the picture is that Outdoor Nation wants it outside and want to see you! That means seeing a part of you or a shadow in the picture submitted on the app. Students have from now to October 15 to log their outdoor activities and earn points for their school.

The points system is mainly determined by the type of activity submitted. 20 points is awarded to outdoor activities such as hiking, yoga or adventure racing. Ten points are given to jogging, paddle sports, fishing, caving, camping or biking. Hammocking, walking or slacklining are worth five points, which are most of the activities logged onto the app. Stargazing, gardening and bird watching also count in the challenge, but only earn two points. The minimum duration of each activity is 30 minutes, aiming to avoid those logging activities that only last about ten minutes. Extra points are earned if the activity includes three or more people, is an overnight activity, or is a school organized event.

Prizes are given out by both Outdoor Nation and the USF Recreational (Rec) Club throughout the next four weeks. Each day has a particular activity that can help schools and individuals earn bonus points. The University St. Francis is giving away prizes to those who participate in the special event assigned each day, such as water bottles, camping chairs, duffel bags and towels. To get involved, download the Outdoor Nation app and follow the USF Rec club on Facebook or on Instagram at www.instagram.com/usf_rsm (@usf_rsm).

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