Casey Graham – 2016 Mammut Scholarship Recipient

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AMGA Instructor Team member, Mike Soucy, on the S4 SGC 16 in Crested Butte, CO

Over the course of my professional career in guiding and instructing in the outdoor industry, I have been a part of countless trainings, certification courses, and continuing education programs. Few, however, have compared to the quality and professionalism I have seen in the AMGA courses and exams I have taken.

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Students practicing technical skills on the S4 SGC 16

This winter, I found myself fortunate enough to receive the 2016 Mammut Scholarship which I applied toward the tuition for my Ski Guide Course in Crested Butte, CO. The course was packed with valuable information and practice, as well as pointed and specific feedback from our peers, and our IFMGA certified instructors, Vince Anderson, Steve Banks, and Mike Soucy. I felt well supported in my learning over the 12 days as my effective guiding habits were reinforced, and new ones were learned and implemented, receiving some fine tuning on my guiding craft piece by piece. I came away with a higher confidence in my decision making skills in regards to terrain selection, avalanche assessment abilities, and overall comfort managing a group and mitigating risk while delivering a quality product.

Working primarily for the Air Force Academy military recreation program, I had initially applied for this scholarship in order to attain the type of level of training I knew was necessary to have, but was not necessarily financially viable for myself, or my program supplement. Still, my primary clientele being active duty military and their families, I feel responsible for delivering the highest quality product possible, because they deserve it. They have earned the right to partake in the activities the rest of us can call a lifestyle, and when they partake, they should receive the professionalism and care only active practice and educational opportunities like these can afford their guides. I am proud to be pursuing the lofty standards the AMGA and the guiding profession has set. And I am proud to pass that knowledge and craft on to my clients and staff.

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On top of Mt. Owen, Crested Butte, CO

I am incredibly grateful for the AMGA/Mammut
scholarship. As it has for so many guides in the past, this aid came at a time when I needed it most, and assisted in spring boarding my professional development as a guide and sending me down an exciting track to certification, more experience, and a chance to make a real difference in the lives of my clients.

– Casey Graham
2016 Mammut Scholarship Recipient