This #GivingTuesday, Support Scholarships that Create Outdoor Leaders

On today's global day of giving we want to introduce you to Joanna, a scholarship recipient that went on to become a Super Volunteer with our Basic Climbing Course. Read on to hear Joanna's story and how you can help support outdoorspeople like her.
The Mountaineers The Mountaineers
November 30, 2021

Mushroom hunters, kayakers, climbers, hikers, canyoneers, and more – The Mountaineers is proud to support our community of passionate adventurers and the many ways you engage with our natural landscapes. However, though all are welcome, many people people find that they are unable to join our community without additional support.

Financial barriers are the top-cited reason why hopeful members turn down course spots or choose not to apply. Thanks to support from the donor-funded Mountaineers Access Program (MAP) Scholarship Fund, each year over 150 youth and adults across all branches receive the help they need to fully engage in our community.

This #GivingTuesday we ask that you consider a gift to support our scholarships program and help open the door for others to dive into our community.

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This was the case for Joanna Maltbaek, an immunology PhD student at UW who had an interest in climbing from a young age. Being a full-time student in a rigorous program leaves little extra money for course fees, and Joanna reached out in the hopes of receiving a scholarship to support her entrance into our Basic Alpine Climbing Course.

As it turns out, both Joanna and The Mountaineers benefited greatly from her scholarship. She not only graduated from Basic Climbing, but has gone on to become a Super Volunteer and is working toward becoming a rope leader for future Basic students. Read how this scholarship has impacted her, and why she was inspired to give back:

Joanna’s Story

“Having the financial support to pursue my passion for rock climbing is a dream come true. I am so proud of the work I do as an immunology graduate student, but we are paid a small stipend to cover living expenses, which in Seattle can be high. Thank you, from the bottom of my heart, for your financial contributions, which have helped me fulfill my dream of leading alpine trad climbs. I am now applying to become a rope leader for rock climbs for Basic climbing students, and your support was essential in the pursuit of this goal. 

In 2018-2019 I graduated from the Basic Alpine Climbing course with the Seattle branch. I enthusiastically joined the admin team for the course, and now run the application cycles and instruct at the field trips and overnights. In 2021, I graduated from the intermediate Single and Multipitch trad climbing modules. All of this was made possible by the scholarship program! These courses have had an enormous impact on my life. I'm in my final years as a PhD student in the University of Washington immunology program, and joining The Mountaineers has given me the opportunity to escape the lab in ways I never thought possible, and see the most amazing spaces in our beautiful state. The confidence I have built and the skills I have learned are directly translatable to my scientific career.

Thank you, volunteers, for investing your time and energy into helping me become a safe and competent alpine rock leader. I look up to all of you and hope to also give back and teach these courses in the future. I am so appreciative of your support and careful instruction!”

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Annually, The Mountaineers awards over $50,000 in need-based scholarships to members and volunteers like Joanna. Your charitable support is critical to ensuring we can meet the growing need of our community.

How to Participate in #GivingTuesday


The Mountaineers® is a 501(c)(3) organization supported through earned revenue and elevated through charitable contributions, tax ID:27-3009280, 7700 Sand Point Way NE, Seattle, WA 98115.