Physical endurance, strength, and preparation were certainly necessary for hike up Mount Olympus completed by WCC math professor, Jason Lachniet, this summer.
Lachniet, a native of Grand Rapids, Mich., joined WCC faculty in 2007. He is currently assistant professor of mathematics. When not in the classroom, Lachniet spends time on the trails, scaling mountains, and caving. In fact, he has been involved in the mapping and exploration of many caves in our region.
This summer, he and a group of colleagues hiked atop one of the most isolated peaks in Washington. Mount Olympus is the highest point of the Olympic Mountains, and many hikers strive to reach the remote mountain top each year. With tough terrain, steep climbs, and freezing temperatures, the trek is extremely difficult, even for the most experienced of hikers.
“The most challenging part of the hike was carrying the heavy equipment,” said Lachniet. “I’ve previously hiked Mount Ranier, and this climb proved to be just as challenging.”
Students at WCC have the opportunity to hear and learn from Lachniet through the WCC Outdoor Club. The club is co-advised by WCC history professor Bill Grose. The club participates in various outdoor activities, including hiking, backpacking, rock climbing, caving and canoeing. This year, the club hopes to continue exploring the many outdoor recreation opportunities available in our region, while promoting student leadership and self-reliance in wilderness settings.
Lachniet encourages students to sign up for the club, and he says they don’t need to worry about buying expensive backpacking gear. “I enjoy spending time with students and teaching them various techniques and skills through the outdoor club,” said Lachniet. “We have plenty of gear, so students rarely have to worry about expensive supply purchases when they explore with us.”
There are a variety of student clubs and organizations at Wytheville Community College for student participation. Clubs and organizations can be founded by students, faculty, and staff of WCC. Each club or organization must have at least one faculty or staff member serve as club sponsor. For guidelines for club and organization fundraising activities, please contact the Student Activities Coordinator. More information about WCC’s student organizations can be found at www.wcc.vccs.edu/clubs-organizations.