San Francisco State University, Established 1899, 1600 Holloway Ave. SF, CA 94132

SFSU Public Affairs Press Release

Published by the Public Affairs Office at San Francisco State University, Diag Center.


Contact: Christina Holmes
phone: (415 )338-1665

High-Rise Thrills: Students Help Executives Learn the Ropes, Build Confidence

Advertising firm takes on challenge at Fort Miley Adventure Challenge Course

SAN FRANCISCO, December 6, 2001--In an interesting twist, nine one-time struggling youths will lead 24 business executives through a course on confidence boosting and cooperation during at an outing at the Fort Miley Adventure Challenge course near the Cliff House in San Francisco from 9 a.m. - 4 p.m. on Friday, Dec. 7.

The course, established in 1981 and operated through San Francisco State University, is a series of outdoor exercises that encourages team-building for the participants. At the same time, the Fort Miley staff helps turnaround the lives of local disenfranchised high school students by training them to be leaders of the ropes course.

“The skills that the kids are walking away with are huge,” Ezra Holland, Fort Miley’s executive director, said of the two-year-old Youth Employment Program. “They’re taking with them very marketable skills.”

Two SFSU students, Ian Mosier and Marlo Aleman, will join Galileo High School students to lead the courses for the Wunderman Advertising Agency, a San Francisco-based advertising firm.

Under the umbrella of the Pacific Leadership Institute, a training base within SFSU’s Recreation and Leisure Studies department, the Fort Miley directors have developed a dynamic course of assistance that takes youths from attending the ropes course, to leading it, to ultimately enrolling at SFSU through the Educational Opportunity Program.

EOP allows students from low-income, disadvantaged families to enroll in school and receive advising and other assistance for their academic career. Holland considers Mosier and Aleman, both EOP students, two of Fort Miley’s greatest success stories.

This Friday, rain or shine, participants from the advertising agency will begin the morning by working on low element challenges-no more than a foot above the ground-that build problem-solving and team-building abilities. The afternoon offers high element tasks that demand trust and confidence, like rock-climbing and belaying, a descent technique using ropes.

The Fort Miley Adventure Ropes Course is modeled after a ropes course first developed during World War II to help newly assigned troops work together more effectively.

For more information on the ropes course, contact Ezra Holland, program director and SFSU graduate student by phone, (415) 338-6883 or e-mail, . To contact Holland on the day of the event, call (415) 948-7725.

Fort Miley Adventure Challenge Course is located next to the Cliff House in the Golden Gate National Recreation Area Ocean District. Directions: Go west on Geary Boulevard and turn right on El Camino Del Mar (48th Ave.). Park in the Marine Memorial Parking lot and walk up the service road.

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This release was written by student writer Anastasia Thrift.

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SFSU, 1600 Holloway Avenue, San Francisco, CA 94132
Last modified April 24, 2007, by Office of Public Affairs