In the lead up to the 8in8in8 project Dr Niall Doran from the Bookend Trust called after hearing an interview on the local radio. He thought Expedition Class could join forces with Bookend to inspire students and the community to build positive and effective environmental careers. After four years of going it alone I thought this sounded like a tremendous idea. Now Expedition Class is one of the diverse range of projects of the Bookend Trust. Together we took out the 2010 Tasmanian Award for Environmental Excellence in Education.
Bookend is funded through the time, energy and donations of private individuals concerned about building a positive and co-operative environmental future for our students and community. We welcome the feedback and comment of anyone prepared to Be involved.
The connection with the Australian Geographic Society goes way back to 2003 when they sponsored our north to south traverse of Tasmania. That was in the days before we'd developed an adventure learning model for expeditions but it provided the reassurance that it's okay to have big ideas and no clear plan to fund them! Since then AG has paddled with us from Hobart to Cape York, come on a journey around PNG by sea kayak and ridden, walked and paddled around Australia with the 8in8in8 project. In 2009 they rewarded Expedition Class with the Spirit of Adventure award.
The University of Tasmania Faculty of Science, Engineering and Technology is a mouthful, so they shortened it to UTAS SET. Their ongoing support goes back nearly as far as AG. In 2006 our first crack at combining real life adventure with kids in schools was struggling to get noticed when UTAS SET stepped up to the plate. They've been with us ever since. In return we promise to try our best to show students how excellent science is in real life.
The Bookend Trust received an Innovative Flexible Education Grant to support the continuing work of Expedition Class in taking adventure learning to students wherever they may be, and also to begin the exciting new Skullbone program. Skullbone will allow selected students from four Tasmanian high schools to be part of the adventure on the ground and communicate it through a new website.
Every Tuesday during the school year the Mercury has a learning page. Every now and then they let us sneak in there and push the adventure learning wheelbarrow. In 2009 Expedition Class reached a whole new audience through a weekly Mercury blog live from the 8in8in8 expedition. Since then the partnership has remained an integral part of the success of the program.
Equipment and Services Sponsors
Dave and the team at Moutain Creek Outdoors help us out with great gear at a good price. Equipping expeditions that range from the jungles of PNG to the Tassie high country requires specialised knowledge and these guys have it.