Outward Bound was founded in the treacherous waters of the North Sea during World War II, to provide young sailors with the experiences and skills necessary to survive at sea. Named for the nautical term for a ship’s departure from the certainties of the harbor, Outward Bound was a joint effort between British shipping magnate Sir Lawrence Holt and progressive German educator Kurt Hahn. In 1941, the first Outward Bound school, located in Aberdovey, Wales, offered courses based on training, service, reflection, and team-building. [Outward Bound USA] courses and programs are based on six core values:
Adventure & Challenge
The inherent adventure and challenge of an Outward Bound Wilderness expedition teaches you the skills that great leaders rely on. Explore your capabilities.
Learning by Doing
Every day you will be learning by doing, gaining skills and taking pride in your work and pushing yourself to reach your goals. Your growing competence will result in growing confidence.
Compassion & Service
A shared compassion will develop between you and your course mates as you encounter and overcome the challenges of wilderness living. Working together towards common goals builds life skills such as communication, tolerance, problem solving, the ability to embrace our differences and ultimately yields a true sense of teamwork.
Social and Environmental Responsibility
Experiencing social and environmental responsibility by practicing Leave No Trace and participating in community service makes your stake in the success of your own community abundantly clear.
Character development stems from pushing yourself and testing your limits to be successful in the challenges presented while on course. You will be given time to reflect on these experiences while still in the wilderness - away from life's distractions. By revisiting your accomplishments, you will grow as an individual as you realize your true potential.
Inclusion & Diversity
Welcoming and respecting differences strengthens the richness of ideas and perspectives brought to bear on challenge and learning. The transformational experience of Outward Bound is more powerful when it takes place in the company of others as diverse as the society in which we live.