Summer 2015- Adventure Film & Outdoor Studies in Alaska

As we near our sophomore year of operation, we have gained traction quickly as the *first and only accredited adventure film program within a university system. We have begun some very exciting collaborations with Alaskan organizations, filmmakers, and educators; and, we are ready to offer our students unparalleled access to these opportunities.

Register for classes here! Select Summer 2015, PWSCC Campus, and ODS

Summer 2015 Options:

Dr. Palmer leading a raft trip on the Gulkana River.
Dr. Palmer leading a raft trip on the Gulkana River.

ODS 152- Beginning Rafting: Join us for a multi-day raft/float on the Copper River with the Wrangell St. Elias National Park Service from Chistochina to Chitina, Alaska. We will be shooting a short video for the National Park Service. Students are NOT required to be film students, but can assist as they choose. May 18-21/22

ODS 112- Swiftwater Rescue Technician: co-taught by ODS and Rescue 3 International.

The SRT1 course provides rescuers with the fundamentals of survival in moving water and is recommended for anyone who may be called upon to effect in-water rescues. Students gain knowledge in hydrology and river classifications, size-up, site control and scene management. Practical skills include self-rescue, swiftwater swimming and the fundamentals of shore, boat and in-water rescues. Additionally students are introduced to the basics of boat handling and the fundamentals of rope rescue including mechanical advantage and anchor systems. The SRT1 class also provides the rescuer the foundation to the NFPA Swiftwater Technician level. Swiftwater Technician level is a mandatory training level for inclusion on a Federal Emergency Management Agency Swiftwater/Flood Search and Rescue Team at all Team levels. May 29-31

ODS 295- ODS Internship (by arrangement with Dr. Palmer)

ODS 298- Adventure Research & Creative Activity: Join Dr. Palmer’s summeEFSA Circular Logo- Axes canoes and Aurorar adventure project (film-based). A collaboration with multiple adventure and wilderness-based organizations. As this is a project-based course, students will be selected based on their experience and interests.

Students in ODS 298 do not have to participate in all/any field sections to participate in this course. Participation will be discussed with Dr. Palmer, directly, as this is a creative research project.

ClassesODS 153- Beginning Sea Kayaking: Join ACA Deputy State Director/Level 4 Open Water Coastal Kayaking Instructor, DB Palmer, for two practice evenings and then a day-trip in the Bay of Valdez, Alaska! This course is suited, and designed for, beginning sea kayakers (those with little/no experience). Join us for the chance to paddle your local paradise with small class size. Each student will paddle a solo boat! This course has three sections, and students sign up for just one of them.


Register for classes here! Select Summer 2015, PWSCC Campus, and ODS

Summer 2015 Collaborations (partial list):

BLM logoWSE NPS logoCopper River Watershed project logoRescue 3 logo



*We are the first and only accredited adventure film program housed in an academic degree program, as far as we are aware.

Dr. Palmer selected to present at UAA Faculty Research & Creative Activity Symposium

Grand Opening of the UAA Alaska Airlines Center.
Grand Opening of the UAA Alaska Airlines Center.

While his specific presentation time is still being selected, Dr. Palmer has been selected to travel to Anchorage during the First Annual UAA Faculty Research & Creative Activity Symposium, held in conjunction with the grand opening of the Alaska Airlines Center, from September 5-8th. He will speak and present a video of his current creative activity, namely Expeditionary Film School of Alaska and the Outdoor Studies department at Prince William Sound College in Valdez, Alaska.

Here is the formal abstract that was selected by the panel:


Dr. Palmer will present a behind the scenes film showing how the oft misunderstood field of Outdoor Studies can rebrand itself to address current economic and social realities, as well as be a catalyst for global health, environmental conservation, sustainability, social equity, and other critical movements. Since joining the faculty of Prince William Sound Community College, Dr. Palmer’s research activities have focused on Group Leadership and Decision-Making within Outdoor Leadership, Safety and Risk Outcomes, a full rebranding of the Outdoor Leadership program in Valdez, and the development of his newest research platform, “Expeditionary Film School of Alaska”. The adventure filmmaking concentration at PWSCC is the first, and only, degree program of its kind, anywhere. He has worked extensively with UAF Film program to develop a course articulation agreement for students transitioning from his adventure filmmaking concentration into undergraduate degree in Film Studies. He has also developed courses with Outside Magazine’s Outside Adventure Film School, and 3-time Emmy winning director, Michael Brown, of Serac Adventure Films. Michael Brown and Dr. Palmer led a 10 day adventure filmmaking field course during the spring of 2014. Dr. Palmer is leading the next adventure filmmaking field course (ODS 293) in September of 2014 with Sky Rondenet Media of Lake Tahoe, in Cordova, Alaska. Showcasing his work in, and around, Valdez, Alaska; Dr. Palmer utilizes adventure filmmaking as lead faculty of Outdoor Studies to craft student learning experiences that are laser-targeted toward career employment while engaging students within a robust experiential, liberal arts education.