News Items - Association of Outdoor Recreation and Education
Anna Hisnanick talks about how an AORE scholarship expanded access to networking and professional development opportunities within the industry.

Anna Hisnanick talks about receiving an AORE scholarship and how it increased access to professional development and networking opportunities within the outdoor recreation and education industry.
How did earning an AORE scholarship improve your overall professional development?
Earning an AORE scholarship allowed me to attend the AORE/WEA conference in Snowbird, UT. While at the conference I was able to network and foster both new and long-standing relationships while learning about how other organizations are doing their work.
Outside of just gaining professional development, why do you think AORE scholarships and funds, such as student scholarship endowment, memorial funds, and student/professional development are important to the members of this organization?
These scholarships create access. As the recipient of a student scholarship, this conference was more accessible to me and helped me to further connect with others and learn new ideas.
Please share a quick story about your scholarship or experience that wouldn’t be possible without AORE.
Through AORE I've been connected to individuals who create and deliver affinity programming, and I decided in 2018 that I wanted to start women's specific trips in my role at the time. This trip series and the lessons learned through that are what lead to my scholarship in 2019 and allowed me to continue to expand on the knowledge and ideas I had about equity and inclusion in outdoor recreation and education.
What would you tell other student/pro members thinking about applying for AORE scholarships?
New knowledge and new perspective helps the industry grow and develop. When financial access is a barrier scholarships are a great way to help increase that access. Definitely apply, your voice matters.
What did you learn from your AORE scholarship and/or professional development opportunity?
I learned a lot at the 2019 conference and had the chance to meet really incredible people. I realized that there are a quite a few folks who are doing equity and inclusion work in this field and that there are really tangible opportunities for collaboration and/or idea sharing.
How did you apply the knowledge you learned from your professional development or scholarship opportunity to your career in the outdoor industry?
I've become much more collaborative in the work that I do. Whether it's working with community youth or collaborating with our office for first generation and transition programs, I'm able to take what I've learned about trust, collaboration and relationship building and apply it to programs while delivering outcomes.
What other type of scholarships or professional development opportunities would you like to see at AORE in the future?
I think scholarships that increase access for underrepresented groups is important. Continuing to provide access to students through scholarships. As well as continuing to fund those doing equity and inclusion work in these spaces. Doing JEDI work is challenging, and it can be comfortable for people to continue to dream about what could be in terms of equitable and inclusive spaces.
Why do you think these scholarship and professional development opportunities are important to AORE and advancing the larger outdoor industry?
Access is really key to the whole discussion. When the cost of an opportunity limits access to those with financial means and/or those who work for organizations with financial means, it limits the information and perspective coming into that space. For the outdoor industry, thinking about these development opportunities is one way to begin to think about the structures in place on a larger scale within the industry - how do we create a more accessible industry? And as we create that access, are we also considering the systems that need to be understood and reworked in order to create an environment in which people feel they can grow, develop, and contribute to the discourse or industry-wide knowledge? By providing access, the industry moves towards being reflective of the population, and reflective of the consumers of our services, and helps create leaders for the future who understand the impact, influence and importance of creating access to the outdoors.

AORE scholarships are funded through the generous donations of people like you! Learn more about HOW YOU CAN SUPPORT AORE.

Categories: Advocacy, Career Advancement, Membership, Networking, Professional Development
Published: 12/03/19