The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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Training for wilderness emergencies

Photo by Courtesy of Sarah Schneider
Wilderness Course

For many, venturing into the wild is a common hobby, yet it comes with it’s own set of dangers. Texas A&M Recreational Sports offers a course covering treating injuries and illnesses in the wild when professional help is a ways away.
The upcoming Wilderness First Responder Course, conducted by Outdoor Adventures of Texas A&M University, will be carried out on the A&M campus on Jan. 6-14, 2018 and cost $760 for students and $910 for non-students. This certified course will be the standard for those who work in environments where 911 is out of reach, according to Sarah Schneider, Outdoor Adventures coordinator.
“Outdoor Adventures is designed to meet the needs of the student population that isn’t interested in a ballcourt sport or a fitness center — we reach the others,” Schneider said. “Our core values of our group are discovery, community, courage, development and integrity. The thing for us is to give people access to opportunities and to encourage them to try new things and ultimately, hopefully, to help them discover these wells of ability that they didn’t even know they had.”
Schneider said the wilderness medicine courses will give people basic instruction to recognizing and treating illnesses when other help is lacking.
“The wilderness medicine courses give participants some basic information about the functional anatomy that works in our body to sustain life,” Schneider said. “The reality in Texas is that almost everybody is spread out from help. So these courses will provide steps that you can use to assess and give first and secondary steps that you can do to support somebody until you can get more definitive help.”
While some take the courses of their own accord, others, such as Kaylyn Knight, recreation, park and tourism science junior, take the class because of degree requirements. Knight took the Wilderness First Aid course on Oct. 14 and said she credits the class with providing her the knowledge on how to respond in the case of an emergency while outdoors.
“It was great to learn how to bandage wounds effectively,” Knight said. “The class allowed for a hands-on experience to learn how to provide proper care. Because of the training experience, I feel comfortable using these skills on myself and others.”
Not only does this course help during remote outdoor emergencies, but it can give advantages to people in their daily life, according to Knight.
“People should take this class because it challenges one to step out of their comfort zone to learn how to help themselves and others,” Knight said. “This course is extremely beneficial to anyone going into the outdoor industry that wants to learn how to take care of themselves and others, but it also provides knowledge that can be applied to everyday life.”
Preparing for a volunteer trip to Nicaragua, water management & hydrological science graduate student Lindsey Aldaco-Manner took the Wilderness First Responder course in January 2015 and will be taking the course again on Dec. 1-3. Aldaco-Manner said she took the course to prepare herself for a volunteer trip in Nicaragua.
“WFR is a great course to take and prepares you well for medicine in the backcountry,” Aldaco-Manner said. “My experience from instructors is they are passionate about what they teach and they are tough in training because the result of their graduates means there is an expectation that you could be saving someone’s life.”

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