Wednesday January 28, 2015

Frosh Trip Leader Newsletter

It's time once again for that most incredible adventure, Frosh Trip! Please read this newsletter carefully. The link to the online Application is below.

Applications are now Open
The Application Deadline for current Leaders is Friday, March 1

Once again it’s time to start thinking about our next great endeavor, FT 2013! OA runs the largest wilderness orientation program in the United States. We hope you can be a part of FT 2013. If you are still in the process of completing leader training you can still apply. Your acceptance for Frosh Trip 2013 will be based on your successful completion of leader training this spring.

The Frosh Trip itself runs from Saturday, August 31 – Friday, September 6. Leaders need to arrive on Tuesday, August 27 at 5:00 PM in Dillon Gym for Pre-Trip Training and Preparation. Leaders should plan to arrive on August 27.

Some leaders including Biking Leaders, Canoeing Leaders, Climbing Leaders, Sustainable Farming Leaders, Nature & Spirituality and Base Camp/Outdoor Adventure Leaders need to arrive earlier, see the detailed schedule below for arrival dates.

Frosh Trip Dates 2013

ALL Leaders have to be back on campus on Tuesday, August 27. If you are assigned to one of the trips that requires additional training (see above) you will need to return on the date specified.

  • Tuesday, August 27 from 12:00 - 5:00 PM. Advance Teams finishes final Frosh Trip prep
  • Tuesday, August 27, 9:00 AM - 4:00 PM. Leader move-in
  • Tuesday, August 27, 5:00 PM. Leader Check-in Dillon
  • Wednesday, August 28 - Friday, August 30 - Training Workshops
  • Saturday, August 31 - Frosh Arrive
  • Sunday, September 1 - Friday, September 6 - Frosh Trip 2013
  • Saturday, September 7 - Leader Clean-up

Early Training Dates 2013

If you are selected to lead one of these trips, you need to return early for special training: Biking, Canoeing, Climbing, Sustainable Farming, Food & Gear Packers, Nature & Spirituality or Base Camp/Outdoor Adventure

  • Monday, August 19 - Food & Gear Packers Return
  • Thursday, August 22 - Climbing Leaders Return
  • Friday, August 23 - Biking & Canoeing Leaders Return
  • Saturday, August 24 - Outdoor Adventure & Sustainable Farming leaders return
  • Sunday, August 25 - Nature & Spirituality Leaders return


What's New This Year

  • We ARE the biggest program in the country.

  • Nature & Spirituality Program and other COOL New Programs - The Nature & Spirituality Backpacking Trip last year was a HUGE success so we'll be bringing that back again. We are also exploring other new types of trips.

  • Invite cool faculty and staff! We had great success in having a faculty or staff person come and spend a day or a night with a trip. We want to identify those people you think would be cool (think Professor Gager). You can indicate people on your Leader Application in the Suggestions for FT 2013 section.

  • Early Food & Gear Packers: We'll be hiring 8-10 leaders to come back a week early (around August 23) to do final equipment and food packing. You'll be able to move into commigled housing (free) and we are paying $11.50/hour. Sign up for Food & Gear Packers on TripStore under the Leader's Only section.

  • Orientation Week Jobs: We'll be hiring a group of people to work in the ER after Frosh Trip during orientation week to get equipment sorted out for the year. If you want to make some extra cash, indicate your interest on the application.

  • Help OA Expand Next Year: Thanks to the Polartec Grant Money ($10,000) we are going to be able to do a lot more trips during the year next year. If you want to make OA even bigger, indicate your interest on the application.

  • The arrival date for Leaders is Tuesday, August 27 and OA check-in is at 5 PM in Dillon Gym. Leaders will be able to move into their regular year dorm rooms on August 27. No Leaders can arrive before that date unless specifically approved by the OA Director (e.g students coming back for early training). Leaders approved to come back for Early Training arriving before August 27 will be housed in co-mingled (shared) housing with other OA students and will move into their regular year dorm rooms on August 27. Information on co-mingled housing.

CPR Certification

All Leaders must be certified in Adult CPR (either Red Cross or American Heart Association) before leading a Frosh Trip. If you did not take your class through OA you will need to provide a photocopy of your certification card. We are offering a number of classes this spring for those who need to recertify. There will be CPR Refresher Courses after spring break. See the OA TripStore for dates & times. American Heart Association taught by OA is good for 2 years. Red Cross Certification is good for one year.


Frosh Trip Application & Health History Forms

To apply, fill out the Frosh Trip Application and Health History Form on the Web. Applications for returning leaders are due by Friday, March 1.

If you are in the process of completing the Leader Training requirements this spring you should go ahead and submit an application to lead. Your application will be reviewed at the end of the year to confirm that you have completed all of the leader training requirements and are eligible to lead a trip.

Advance Team

We are looking for a group of leaders who can come back early on Tuesday, August 27 to work as an Advance Team on Tuesday afternoon to help in final preparations for FT 2013. This group will be responsible for such things as last minute packing and all the thousands of little things that need to be done in the final hours before the Frosh Trip starts. Advance Team starts working on Tuesday, August 27 from 12:00 PM- 5:00 PM. If you are interested in volunteering for the Advance Team, please indicate this on your application.

Are You Going to Be on Campus this Summer?

If you are going to be on campus this summer, please check this on your application form. We need help all summer long to get ready. Every week we do Thursday Pizza Night at the ER - free pizza in exchange for packing first aid kits, and fixing packs and stoves. If you are going to be in Princeton, please mark this on your Frosh Trip Application.

Early Arrival Housing Information

Due to summer construction projects please be aware that some dormitories might not be available for early arrival students. Check the Housing Web site for the latest information. If you draw a room in any of these locations and you are in a pre-approved early arrival group, you may not be able to access your room until September 7. In that case you must find alternate arrangements before this date, as the Housing Department will not have temporary housing available. In most cases you would need to stay with co-leaders or friends until Frosh Trip returns on September 6. We will be working with Building Services to identify storage areas for your belongings until you can get into your room.

Leaving Things in Storage for the Summer

If you have items like clothing and gear that you need to get to before the Frosh Trip there will be limited Early Arrivals Storage for OA Leaders in Gauss Hall. This means 1-2 boxes only and should only be gear you need for the trip. This will be the ONLY area that you will be able to get into on August 27 when you return. Gauss Storage will be open:

  • Monday, 5/13 - Friday, 5/18 9:30 a.m. - 12:00 noon, 12:30 p.m. - 3:00 p.m.
  • Saturday 5/18 9:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.
  • If you need to leave before 5/13 Contact Building Services about getting access to Gauss.


Positions for FT 2013

The Frosh Trip is a massive logistical enterprise. Ours is the largest program in the country in terms of participants and number of days. This means we need lots of qualified staff: leaders, support team staff, and Command Center managers. In order to be eligible to lead a Frosh Trip you should have completed all of the leader training requirements. If you haven’t completed everything yet but are planning to so by the end of the year, you should still submit an application. You will be considered for a leader position based on your successful completion of the Leader Training requirements and the evaluation after your Leader Training Trip.

When you apply to be part of FT 2013, you are agreeing to serve in the role and location, which you are assigned to, without complaints.

We will do our best to place you in the position that you request and will take into account your location preferences and pairing requests. In a program of this size, we can't fulfill everyone's requests and we cannot switch people around at the last minute. You will find out just what position and location you have been assigned to when you return in August.


You need to have successfully completed all of the leader training requirements by June 10. You must also have current CPR certification for September 2013. If your certification has expired or will expire you need to re-certify your CPR before Frosh Trip.

Types of Trips

OA is offering a broad range of trips for this year’s Frosh Trip. Please rank your trip interests on the application form.


Most OA trips involve backpacking. This year we will be using the same areas we have used in the past. Catskills, NY; Shenandoah National Park in Virginia; Central Pennsylvania - Black Forest, Laurel Highlands, Loyalsock; AT in Massachusetts, Pennslvania, Maryland, Connecticut, Vermont, and New Jersey.

Base Camp/Outdoor Adventure Trips: TripStore for Required Early Training

These trips have been extremely popular and we anticipate even more frosh requesting them. Groups camp out in backwoods sites at the Princeton-Blairstown Center for the week and do a different activity each day including: the high ropes course & zipline, outdoor climbing wall, rappelling, an overnight on the Appalachian Trail, and a trail maintenance service project. Leaders selected to lead a Base Camp/Outdoor Adventure trip will need to return to campus on Saturday, August 24 to participate in a 2-day training and orientation at Blairstown that begins at 9:00 AM on Sunday, August 25.

Sustainable Farming Trips: TripStore for Required Early Training

These trips have opened a whole new aspect fo Frosh Trip. Groups spend the week at a local organic farm in New Jersey or Pennsylvania learning about sustainable agriculture from local farmers while providing and important service during the busy harvesting season at the end of the summer. Leaders selected to lead an Sustainable Farming trip will need to return to campus on Saturday, August 24 to participate in a 2-day training and orientation at on the farms that begins at 9:00 AM on Sunday, August 25.

Biking Trips: TripStore for Required Early Training

Bike Trips will explore back roads along the GAP Trail and Chesapeake & Ohio (C&O) Canal towpath biking 30-50 miles per day. Leaders selected to lead an Biking trip will need to return to campus on Friday, August 23 to participate in 3-day training that begins at 9:00 AM on Saturday, August 24.

Canoeing or Backpacking/Canoeing Trips: TripStore for Required Early Training

There are a number of canoeing trips including flatwater and whitewater. There are also some trips that involve both backpacking and canoeing. All of these are in the Delaware Water Gap. Leaders selected to lead a canoeing trip will need to return to campus on Friday, August 23 to participate in 3-day training that begins at 9:00 AM on Saturday, August 24.

Nature & Spirituality Trip: TripStore for Required Early Training

This is a new trip designed to create opportunities for freshmen to focus on exploring the natural world during Frosh Trip. Leaders selected to lead Nature & Spirituality Trip trip will need to return to campus on Sunday, August 25 to participate in a 1-day preparation with others leading this trip to explore how you will incorporate this extra focus into your trip. The training begins at 9:00 AM on Monday, August 26.

Backpacking/Rock Climbing Trips: TripStore for Required Early Training

There are several backpacking and rock climbing trips in the Delaware Water Gap and Connecticut. Leaders selected to lead a climbing trip will need to return to campus on Thursday, August 22 to participate in 4-day PCIA Base Managed Climbing Instructor training that begins at 9:00 AM on Friday, August 24.

Apply Online

Here is the special information you'll need to put in your application. Dig it up before going to the online application.

  • Summer Address information if you won't be living at home and what dates you will be there
  • Your Health Insurance Provider (what insurance company)
  • Your Health Insurance Group Number and your Subscriber Number
  • Doctor's Name and Phone Number

Apply Now


Students who are on foreign study or taking time off

Sometimes people who are on foreign study have difficulty logging in. You have to go through Princeton's Central Authentication Service in order to access the application page.

Since there is no way for us to test this from our end to fix the problem it is important to find out if you are getting some type of error message and if so what in order to diagnose the problem or if you simply can't get to the login page. Please email Outdoor Action with detailed information about the problem you are having and any error messages. It's best to use Internet Explorer and you must have Session Cookies enabled in the browser. If you are coming in from an Internet cafe cookies may be disabled. You may be better coming in from a connection at a University or library.