Leader Bios: Meet our Pacific Coast Leaders!

Our 2021 Leader Bios are nearing an end, but not before we learn about the fantastic folks working on the Pacific Coast this summer!

Leader Name: Nellie Simmonds (she/her/hers)

2021 Trip: Pacific Coast 

Hometown: Gill, Massachusetts

School: Vassar College, Class of 2023

Major: Biochemistry 

Certifications: Emergency Medical Technician (EMT), Lifeguard & CPR

Favorite Outdoor Activities: Skiing, biking, and running

Highlights of 2020: Nellie did a backpacking and biking trip in the White Mountains with a few friends. 

Where you can find Nellie when she isn’t on the trail: She loves listening to podcasts of all sorts and just started learning how to play the guitar! 

There are so many reasons that we think she’s the bee’s knees, but here are just a few of those reasons: When she was ten, she watched the movie “Ella Enchanted” so much (we are talking multiple times a week, people) and now she can recite huge portions of the dialogue in the movie. She is an intern in the Biology department of Vassar College and does independent research and works with a variety of marine creatures such as coral, sea anemones, and brine shrimp. She was also born in Germany and has dual citizenship there!

Leader Name: Alex Dumont (he/him/his)

2021 Trip: Pacific Coast

Hometown: Pennington, New Jersey

School: University of Michigan, Class of 2023

Major: Public Policy

Certifications: Wilderness First Aid, Lifeguard & CPR

Favorite Outdoor Activities: Running and mountain biking! 

Highlights of 2020: Alex completed his first marathon in 3 hours and 7 minutes! 

Where you can find Alex when he’s not running: He loves cooking and is a huge fan of making different types of pastas (especially with butter and garlic…) 

Awesome facts about Alex: He has been to ten different countries. Alex has worked as a camp counselor and has led mountain biking, hiking, and running camps since 2016 and has been running competitively in triathlons and other races since he was 10. He also has been practicing meditation since 8th grade. Lastly, Alex is a three-time Apogee alumnus and went on our Vermont to Montreal, (now defunct) Montana Service Adventure, and our European Coast to Coast trips!

Leader Name: Ajed Zimet

2021 Trip: Pacific Coast Support

Hometown: Larchmont, New York

School: Auburn University, Class of 2022

Major: Media Studies & Visual Media; Minor: Marketing 

Certifications: Wilderness First Aid, Lifeguard & CPR

Favorite Outdoor Activities: Playing basketball, snowboarding, biking, hiking, and fishing

Highlights of 2020: Ajed road tripped to Dallas from Auburn! 

Where you can find Ajed when he’s not playing basketball or studying: He can usually be found hanging out with friends or working out. He loves watching all different types of movies! 

Ajed is amazing, and here is just a little glimpse into why: Ajed has been on seven Apogee trips as a student – including America Coast to Coast! He also went on our Cape Cod & the Islands, Vermont to Montreal, Caribbean Service, Pacific Coast, Maine Coast College Essay, and Maine Coast Photography trips. Other fun facts include that his name is an acronym for his four great grandparents on his father’s side and that he plays lacrosse at Auburn.