Thanks so much for your interest in this project. Exploring the lives of women in adventure education who become mothers was an obvious quest as I was simply exploring my own metamorphosis. In becoming a mother, it was clear that I was changing, so why not study the process and share it with others. I personally believe it is an important topic and have been surprised that so many others do too.
I am a faculty member at a small liberal arts college in central Arizona. Our Adventure Education program is unique in its curriculum delivery. We have a commitment to experiential education and a commitment to field based, real life, adventures. In as such, an instructor at Prescott College can find her or himself in remote, rugged, and rigorous environs much of their career. The second and third decades of my life have been spent backpacking, climbing, and exploring mountains and rivers. The fourth decade of my life however is to be spent on a new challenging endeavor: motherhood.
Prescott College has been generous enough to grant faculty members a sabbatical for every seven years of service. In years past, I envisioned sabbatical in Norway guest teaching at a university, or further studying wool and landscapes in New Zealand. When the sabbatical finally came around, however, I knew I had to spend my year close to home. I had a one year old daughter and a husband who would not have the luxury of a year “off”. Little did I know that I would also spend the coming year pregnant. My required project, then, would have to synchronize with my family. I chose to write - and to write about mothers who have or had lives and lifestyles in adventure and the wilderness. Hence, this project was born.
I have chosen to share my writing in this ePortfolio format because I want it to be accessible. I am not ready to publish in book form as there is more writing to do. However, the stories and chapters will only benefit from exposure and I want the work to grow from many mothers’ experiences, not just my own. If it takes a village to raise a child, I’d like to invite the village in. Using the "comment" function, I ask that readers give feedback.
Thanks for Reading,
Erin Lotz, faculty member in the Prescott College Resident Degree Program Adventure Education program has been on sabbatical for the 2008 calendar year. Time has been spent researching, interviewing, and writing both creative and non-fiction pieces on the intersection between motherhood and adventure education. Her pioneering work has been the first to address this topic in the U.S. and includes perspectives from women from several countries. She received an appreciative and enthusiastic reception from participants at the International Association for Experiential Education conference in Portland, Oregon and is excited to share her findings on campus. Erin returns from sabbatical having also produced a new family member, a baby boy, born in January. Tanner will soon join his two year old sister Violet in their family outdoor adventures.