Stoutward Bound (SWB) is a popular living and learning community for first-year American ethnic minority students sponsored by Multicultural Student Services.  This program is designed to "jump start" the college experience by providing support for a successful transition to college.

Early Start

Students come to campus two weeks before the start of the fall semester, live in South Hall, eat their meals at Price Commons and attend classes Monday through Friday.  There will also be fun activities and group study sessions throughout the week.  Student will be required to participate in a leadership retreat during one of two weekends prior to the start of the fall semester.  There are no additional costs/fees to students to participate.

Academic Year Support

Students will meet monthly with a Stoutward Bound advisor.  The advisor will be able to link students to campus resources and offer encouragement and support.  There are monthly college success workshops to help build "college know-how."  Mentors will serve as role models to help navigate through campus life.


  • Early academic success through building confidence for college-level coursework
  • Become familiar with the campus and the community, locate resources, and learn about opportunities for involvement
  • Out-of-the classroom activities that reinforce classroom learning
  • Develop a sustainable learning community throughout the first year of college
  • Leadership development through experience
  • Provides an environment for making lifelong friends

Learning Community

All Stoutward Bound students take two common courses together that start two weeks prior to the fall semester. These classes are on the students' fall schedule and continue throughout the semester:

  • SPCOM 100, Fundamentals of Speech (3 Credits)
  • PSYH 110, General Psychology (3 Credits)

Living Community

All participants are required to live on campus. Students will move in early to South Hall, their permanent residence for the academic year.

Leadership Weekend

When students sign up for Stoutward Bound they are also committing themselves to participate in leadership training. The weekends during the two-week early start are reserved for leadership training. Since the training is meant for small groups, the cohort of 40 is split into two groups; each group attends training on one of the designated weekends.

Leadership from the Heart is an intense, two-day leadership training designed to be an executive development course and has been adapted so college students can experience the world-class facilitation and personal and professional development that successful business people have access to. Leadership from the Heart will give students tools, strategies and confidence as they move forward. Our goal is to empower our students for academic, personal and professional success. We believe this wholeheartedly! We have seen the program work for many of our students; some of our alums have become senators in Stout Student Association (government), resident assistants (RAs) and leaders in various student organizations. For many participants, leadership training is one of the main highlights and favorite parts to Stoutward Bound. This is why we have made it part of the Stoutward Bound commitment, as we are fully invested in your potential.


Staff Support

During the academic year, intentional one-on-one attention is given to Stoutward Bound participants.

Coordinator/Advisor, Vickie Sanchez works in the Multicultural Student Service office. Her role is to support students with academic, financial, involvement and job placement guidance.

Two Peer Mentors will serve as peer leaders as they have experienced and transitioned into college life successfully. They will be a listening ear for students and assist in organizing activities, workshops, socials and community service projects.

Throughout the academic year, you will meet at least twice per semester with the Stoutward Bound Coordinator/Advisor. You will be able to participate in monthly workshops specifically for Stoutward Bound students on topics such as Scholarships, Financial Aid and Academic Advising. Participants will also have organized socials and community service projects to learn community engagement both on and off campus.

Meet the Peer Mentors

Jisela Cornejo

Major:  Vocational Rehabilitation with a concentration in Social Work 
Hometown:  Apple Valley, Minnesota 
Favorite Cartoon: Pepper Ann, Doug & Recess 

If you can have any super power or superhero power what would it be: The ability to travel through time anywhere or travel in general. 

What is one of the student organizations you belong to and why: I have not been as involved with student orgs as I would like to be (attending meetings regularly) but I am usually at their events on campus because it is a great way to socialize and meet new people. 

Favorite restaurant in Menomonie:  Definitely Cancun! 
Favorite activity to do with friends:  Play board games &Cards Against Humanity. 

What is one piece of advice you'd give to a new freshmen:  Do not be afraid to be your complete self! As cliche as this sounds, this is the time to find yourself. You should not feel embarrassed about the quirky cool things you love, or the "nerdy" games you like once in a while. Be yourself, there are so many clubs and people who will accept you. Get involved! 

What is one thing on your Menomonie (area)/Stout bucket list item that you want to do before you graduate?:  Watch as many concerts or open mics as I can at the Acoustic Cafe! (Another favorite hot spot/ restaurant). 

Favorite inspirational quote:  "We can never obtain peace in the outer world until we make peace with ourselves."  - Dalai Lama 

How to Register

Call Vickie Sanchez, Student Services Coordinator at (715) 232-1108 to state your interest in participating in Stoutward Bound or complete the online application HERE.

We encourage you to apply early; space is limited!



Contact Information

Vickie Sanchez, Student Services Coordinator
203 Bowman Hall
Phone: 715/232-1108


Why join Stoutward Bound?

During these two weeks, I felt as if I'd met my family away from home. These new friends and mentors pushed me to step outside the box and never be afraid to do something that I have a passion for. By the time the actual academic year began, I was prepared and ready to begin the journey of my four years at Stout with my fellow Stoutward Bound family.

~ Antoinette Lyte-Evans, 2012 Stoutward Bound Student

Stoutward Bound Community

Stoutward Bound Favorite Moments

Stoutward Bound Brochure