Scholarships Announced for Alaska Mountain Ultrarunning Camps

A couple weeks ago I wrote about the lack of diversity in trail running, most specifically economic diversity. As I wrote that piece I thought numerous times about the running camps I direct in Alaska. Ever since coming up with the idea of directing a running camp, I’ve been drawn to the notion of offering discounted or free camp entry to runners who are interested in attending the camp, but who can’t afford the expense of both the camp and the cost of travel. Over the past two years I’ve thrown this idea around in my mind, but until now it’s never made it outside of the space in my head. Developing running camp scholarships was such an obvious response to my last piece that there was even a comment in that column from a reader who had a similar idea. The fact that I wasn’t the only one thinking about this got the wheels spinning faster in my mind, and I have now decided to make this idea a reality.

Alaska Mountain Ultrarunning CampI am excited to announce that beginning with the sessions next summer, Alaska Mountain Ultrarunning Camp will be offering scholarships based in part on financial need. Our hope will be to offer three total scholarships (one for each session) which will cover all camp fees and most/all travel expenses. Alaska Mountain Ultrarunning Camp is putting $1,500 into a scholarship fund, and will accept contributions from those interested in further underwriting these scholarships. We will take contributions between now and the end of the year, at which time we will announce how many scholarships are available. We will then begin taking applications and nominations for the scholarships on January 1, 2013. The application will consist of a few short questions which will focus on the applicant’s running background, reasons for wanting to attend, and financial circumstances which prohibit them from doing so. We will accept applicants until the end of February, and then notify the recipients in early March.

We very much encourage people to nominate individuals who they feel would be a good fit for these scholarships.

I think the trail running community is an amazingly open and accepting group, and I’m excited to put in place this program that will consist of runners directly contributing to other runner’s potential for  growth – or at the least for a very unique experience.

Please check out the Alaska Mountain Ultrarunning Camp website for more information on this program, or if you are interested in contributing to the scholarship fund. You can also contact me through the camp website if you are interested in nominating someone for a scholarship.

There are 18 comments

  1. Ben

    Geoff…I know you don't do this to be told that you're an amazing person, but you are. You walk the walk and literally put your money where your mouth is…and probably a half-dozen other cliche sayings that mean the same, but it's true. I know it's just a running camp. You're not solving the world's problems, but this is a great thing for some folks out there and I'll be talking it up to some folks I know to spread the word and get some good applicants. Best of luck to you.

    1. Geoff Roes

      The camps are intended for experienced trail runners, but most definitely not specifically elite level runners. As long as you have some experience trail running and are in good enough shape to run for several hours at a time you will be ready to take part in and hopefully benefit from these camps.

      1. Mic

        That's awesome, thanks for clarifying. I've run a 24 hour event so the time spent running is not a problem.

        I wouldn't need a scholarship and it's nice to have this as an option for travel.

  2. MikeC AK

    Awesome Geoff. I wish my poor high school self could have participated in your camp, I would have loved it and likely found the joy in running that took me until my later 20's to discover…

  3. ken michal

    Love that you're doing this, Geoff!! I had a couple friends who attended this year's camps and they had a profound effect on their running! It's awesome that you are making the camps more accessible to everyone!!

    Haven't been to the post office yet but I'll have that book in the mail soon!

    All Day!

    ~Ken

  4. Mike Hinterberg

    Good stuff. Would love to see someone from the city or someone that never imagined they'd have the chance to go to Alaska. Perhaps a "requirement" for this scholarship would be a short writeup, or at least a picture with a big smile on their faces? Can't wait to hear about that. Awesome.

  5. Tarzan

    Justin took the words right of my mouth, yes, you are an ambassador of this great sport and a fine example of what an athlete should be. Can't wait to hear about how these camps go…and also can't wait to hear about upcoming races!

  6. OOJ

    Excellent effort!

    FYI – to be clear, there is a Paypal donation button on the bottom of Geoff's website. It takes roughly 18 seconds to donate!

  7. Lulu Guerrero

    This is an amazing opportunity, thank you! Speaking for myself, not only is it difficult to explain to your family and friends why you're running all the time & especially paying for a race, but allowing yourself to say "I'm training, I'm an athlete, and yes I'm female!" An athlete in my community means your male & you play soccer!

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