Trip Start – Build-Up, Preparation, Nervousness, Excitement

Teamwork & Leadership

trip start featured

As any Overland student knows, preparing for your trip can be a bit nerve wracking. Whether you’re embarking on Berkshire Adventure for one week or American Challenge for six weeks, the anticipation of that first day of trip start is the same. Will I like the other people in my group? How will the leaders be? What will I eat? Will I be able to keep up on our hikes or bike rides? Even “experienced” Overland students with a few summers under their belt feel this nervousness — the beauty of Overland is that every trip is different, with new friends, new leaders, and new challenges to discover.

What Overland students might not realize as they pack, prep, and review the Overland website for the millionth time, is that their leaders are a bit nervous, too. It’s the kind of nervousness that is mixed with anticipation, eagerness, and true excitement for what the summer has in store.

Leader Backpacks
Post-dinner Announcements at Leader Training

While students gear up for their trips at home, Overland leaders arrive in Williamstown for 10 days of Leader Training. They learn everything there is to know about leading a teen adventure trip the Overland way: how to reduce risks, the ins and outs of their trip logistics, how to grocery shop efficiently and effectively for 12 students and 2 leaders, and most importantly, how to build a cohesive group and ensure a fun, meaningful summer for every student. Committed and hardworking, Overland leaders hold a high standard for the quality of their students’ experience — no wonder there’s some nervousness! Before each trip start, leaders spend hours reviewing each student’s name, information, and photo so they’re ready to greet them. They triple check their group gear and their trip itinerary. And even with this preparation, there is still a mystery of the unknown for what the group and the summer will bring.

Playing Games at Trip Start
Bike Maintenance at Leader Training

The magic of Overland happens within minutes of the first student’s arrival. Names are put to faces. Hugs are exchanged. Frisbees are tossed. The nervousness turns into full-fledged excitement — for both leaders and students. There is beauty in seeing a group come together for the first time, to see them move past anticipation and ease into each other. Once the trip starts, the adventure can officially begin.

Filed under: Teen Summer Adventures, Teen Summer Biking Trips, Teen Summer Hiking Trips, Teen Summer Community Service, Teen Summer Language Study Abroad

Leader Training Group Work
Getting to Know the Group at Trip Start

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