Over the past six months, Collin Breheny has been researching and developing a pilot program for ATC’s Konnarock Trail Crew. It will provide young people ages
14 to 17 with outdoor opportunities and hands-on environmental education, while also looking to the future of ATC’s volunteer Trail crews.
Collin has reached out to several organizations who work with youth to cultivate relationships and to research and develop a model program for the youth crew. He has produced marketing materials, program timelines, and a curriculum and is currently drafting standard operating procedures.
According to ATC’s Regional Trail Resources Manager Leanna Joyner, “Collin jumped into his volunteer role full of gusto, and his commitment hasn't waned. He has taken time to understand the complexities of our cooperative management system, and has generated an SOP that should see us launching a pilot program in 2016.
"It's a pleasure to work with volunteers when you can tell they are in their element, and Collin was definitely swimming (er, hiking) in his on this project."
A senior at the University of North Carolina, Asheville, Collin will graduate next spring with an environmental studies degree. In addition to his coursework and volunteer internship with ATC, he has worked as a student environmental coordinator for UNC Asheville and as an outdoor educator and backpacking guide. He also volunteers with Everybody's Environment, a local organization that promotes diversity in Asheville and surrounding counties.
Collin began section hiking the A.T. in 2009 and looks forward to completing that journey later in life. Besides backpacking and hiking, his interests include cycling, running, reading, dog training, and enjoying all that Asheville has to offer with his family and friends. Newly married, Collin and his wife will celebrate their honeymoon in Alaska later this summer.
Collin has two personal philosophies: “One, love is all you need. And two, nothing is more important than family.”
We hope his efforts and enthusiasm will bring more young people into our “family” as Trail volunteers and supporters.