Young people today need authentic adventure,” said Josh Miner in a 1964 article in the Princeton Alumni News. The article, which inspired many that year, highlighted Miner’s efforts to introduce a unique experiential education methodology called Outward Bound to the United States.
While Outward Bound had existed for many years overseas, in 1964 it was just beginning to make an appearance in the US. Wilderness schools had opened in Colorado and Minnesota and a third was nearing completion in Maine. Miner’s work to introduce Outward Bound founder Kurt Hahn’s inspirational views on education intrigued many at the time – and in North Carolina, none so much as Marjorie Buckley.
Buckley was working at The North Carolina Fund at the time – an organization nationally renowned for its innovative approach to North Carolina’s “assault on poverty.” At the core, their focus was upon education as the lever for change. Their community-based programs included service corps, internship programs, adult literacy projects, economic development initiatives, and much more. Buckley convinced Jack Mansfield, Director of Special Projects at The Fund, that Outward Bound was worthy of examination. Indeed it was, and soon thereafter she emerged as the driving force for the founding of the North Carolina Outward Bound School.
By the end of 1965, Buckley had assembled a board of directors for NCOBS who convened in December to select a site for the first base camp. Despite earlier hopes to establish a seafaring school on Bald Head Island near the Cape Fear River, the group chose...