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For freshmen Reagan Oakley, joining the UW Oshkosh Ski and Snowboard club during the September 2014 Taste of Oshkosh wasn’t about joining a club, it was about joining a family.

“Going into college I only knew a few people coming to Oshkosh, so I was really nervous about not being able to find friends,” Oakley said. “Everyone in the club is super-friendly, and it’s really helped me become more comfortable with myself and to branch out more. I couldn’t have asked for a better group of people to get involved with.”

The UW Oshkosh Ski and Snowboard club, in its first year as a student organization at UWO, has more than 50 members, with many more students joining them for skiing and snowboarding trips.

The Ski and Snowboard Club is open to skiers and snowboarders of all skill-levels and is a great community to get involved with, said Derek Betz, senior music recording technology major and club president.

“Everyone is welcome,” Betz said. “I did not expect the friendships that we have developed throughout the year.”

Our mission is to allow college students to enjoy winter sports at a reduced cost and to provide students with a skiing and snowboarding community at UWO, Betz said.

For Nick Wirsching, a junior communication major and the Ski and Snowboard Club vice president said starting the Ski and Snowboard Club with Betz was an opportunity to have a community with other skiers and snowboarders and to continue skiing and snowboarding while in college.

“What doesn’t make the Ski and Snowboard Club fun?” Wirsching said. “We go skiing and snowboarding all of the time, it gets you away from the stresses of school and it is more than a club—it’s a community.”

Ski and Snowboard Club members bring with them diverse backgrounds and varying majors, strengthening the relationships and club environment.

“There’s always people with different concerns we need to address, and being a communication major has really helped me take what I learned in the classroom and address those concerns,” Wirsching said.

“You don’t have to be amazing to join the club. No one is judgmental, “Oakley said. “I’ve had the best experience with this group and others have really encouraged me and helped me improve.”


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