Whitewater Frenzy!

Welcome Back!

After a week long break from programming, our Approach participants all traveled to the Gallatin Canyon to take on the rapids in the iconic stretch of river with Montana Whitewater. The adventure into the cool waters of the mountains was a welcome reprieve from the summer heat wave, and both the freshman and sophomores worked together to safely navigate their rafts as teams. 



After tackling the Mad Mile together, the 9th graders transitioned into a workshop in which they continued to focus on teamwork and supporting each other through challenging situations. As these participants close in on the end of their first summer at BYEP, they are refocusing on bonding as a group through shared experiences and cooperative problem solving. Each of the groups competed in a friendly competition against other groups. Although the participants all seem to feel at home within their respective groups, Ellie and Brian continue to support the participants in laying down a foundation for the rest of their journey through the BYEP curriculum.


Post adventure, our 10th graders participated in a second workshop focused on critical decision making. At BYEP we believe in the importance of building the skills to deal with the dynamic situations life throws at us, just like the whitewater rapids on the river. This week the Program Managers helped participants to recognize the people in their lives that influence the decisions they make. Through an activity called Board of Directors, the sophomores created a visual representation of friends, family, teachers, situations, institutions and others who help shape their choices and direction in life. As these participants are rapidly approaching adulthood it is important to recognize how and why they make the decisions they do. 

New Team Member!

As you may have heard, our beloved Kayla is leaving after this summer session to pursue her dream of becoming a therapist. Kayla has graced BYEP with her presence, intelligence, and enormous heart for almost four years, and has left an imprint on our community that could never be replaced, however we are beyond excited to see her grow and follow her dreams.

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Our new Crux PM

As Kayla transitions out, our new Program Manager Emma is extremely excited to begin her BYEP journey. The BYEP team would like to offer our sincerest welcome to Emma, and from there I will let her introduce herself!

"Hello, I’m Emma. I’ve been a student for the majority of my life. I enjoy climbing rocks in beautiful places. I like molding clay into altered forms on a wheel. I like to explore. I like to write. And I too, know the challenges of being in high school.

When I was in high-school and caught in depression, I was fortunate to have mentors in my life who steered me toward climbing, snowboarding, and art and away from the risks that I was falling into. I realized the importance of mentorship and experiential education to help overcome life’s challenges, so I began pursuing opportunities where I could become a mentor to others. In my professional career so far, I have established and developed safe, reliable, and fun environments that support at-risk youth and young-adult communities.

In college, I pursued professional writing and education. I also sought outdoor education with the Professional Climbing Guides Institute and the American Mountain Guides Association so I could professionally share the transformative power of climbing and the outdoors. I worked and volunteered for the organizations Outdoor Outreach and Aztec Adventures, and learned how to develop sustainable programs for kids who just need a safe and empowering community to see how awesome they really are. 

BYEP’s mission directly aligns with mine—to empower youth to become confident adults, but I don’t want to just tell you that I care about your kids and that I want to make a positive impact in their lives. Let me show you."


This Sunday, July 29th, will be our annual summer family BBQ. From 4:00pm to 6:00pm please join us at Bogart Park with all of your family members. BYEP will provide food and drink for all that attend. We hope to see everyone there for an opportunity to get to know the BYEP staff, volunteers, and other participants that your child works with!

Greg SmithComment