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National Resource Center for The First-Year Experience and Students in Transition

Publication Details

When College Outdoor Orientation Programs End: A Grounded Theory Investigation of Program Discontinuation at Four-Year Colleges in the United States


Author(s): Bell, B. J., & Vaillancourt, C.

Citation: Bell, B. J., & Vaillancourt, C. (2011). When College Outdoor Orientation Programs End: A Grounded Theory Investigation of Program Discontinuation at Four-Year Colleges in the United States. Journal of The First-Year Experience & Students in Transition, 23(1), 103-120.

 

Abstract

Outdoor orientation programs are established at the rate of 10 programs a year, yet discontinued at a rate of six programs a year (Bell, Holmes, & Williams, 2010). This study examined the discontinuation of 10 separate college outdoor orientation programs between 2003 and 2008. Using grounded theory, researchers proposed three reasons for program discontinuation: (a) the lack of integration with other campus programs, (b) a sense of exclusion from and competition with other student support programs, and (c) difficulty overcoming the departure of a key administrator. Outdoor orientation program sustainability seems influenced more by integration with other student development services and than by research validating a programs worth.

 

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