Leader Profiles: New England Mountains & Coast

Another rainy Tuesday here on the beautiful coast of Maine, another perfect opportunity to daydream about more perfect summer days and read up on the hard-chargers who will be headed up to the foggy summit of Mount Washington this summer as part of our New England Mountains & Coast trips!  

Philip Duval

Philip DuvallPhilip is a rising Junior at Cornell University, where he is studying Mechanical Engineering.  Philip is a Pittsburgh native who is now enjoying his residence in Ithaca, New York, and taking full advantage of the wilderness that surrounds Cornell.  Philip works as an Outdoor Education Instructor at Cornell, where he regularly holds outdoor skills classes for fellow students.  He has also worked as a high-ropes facilitator at Cornell’s rope course, leading groups through the course, and helping to to moderate team-building activities.  Philip is a co-president of Cornell’s Yoga Club, and practices yoga daily.  Philip loves to spend time outdoors, especially hiking, and has experience backpacking and mountaineering in the White Mountains and Adirondacks.  Full of zest for life, Philip can’t wait to share his Downward Facing Dog and his best bowline knot with his New England Mountains & Coast groups this summer! Philip is a Wilderness First Responder and certified in CPR.

Emma Perkinson

Emma PerkinsonA rising Senior at Bates College, Emma Perkinson lives with her family in the quiet coastal Maine town of Blue Hill.  Though she is now a Maine resident, Emma is a Charlottesville, VA native and a self-proclaimed “Virginia Girl.”  At Bates, Emma is studying American History, plays intramural basketball, and works as a tour guide for the Admissions department.  During the busy semester, Emma spends as much time as she can outdoors, taking regular trips to Acadia National Park and Baxter State Park.  And at the end of this summer, she’ll be leading a pre-orientation backpacking trip for incoming freshmen in Baxter State Park.  Emma spent last fall studying abroad in New Zealand, where she was able to spend lots of time hiking and exploring her majestic surroundings.  At home on Maine’s Downeast coast,  Emma spends summer days sea kayaking and sailing in Blue Hill Bay.  She’s worked both as a camp counselor and lacrosse coach in previous summers, and is excited to work with kids again this summer!  Emma is certified in Wilderness First Aid and CPR.

Matt Neckes

Matt NeckesA rising Senior at Bates College, Matt Neckes hails from Needham, Mass and is the oldest of three.  Matt is majoring in Rhetoric at Bates, and loves the access to the Maine outdoors that the school’s location affords him.  An avid snowboarder, biker, hiker, swimmer, and triathlete, Matt keeps himself active and busy through all four seasons.  Matt spent this past fall studying abroad in Argentina, and toward the end of his semester, was able to plan and lead a group of his friends on a five-day backpacking adventure through the southern part of Chilean Patagonia, in Torres del Paine National Park.  Stateside, Matt has backpacked through Baxter State Park, and summited Mount Katahdin several times.  Matt has led two outdoor pre-orientation trips for incoming freshmen at Bates, and is slated to lead a third at the end of this summer.  Matt also plays the tenor saxophone in the jazz band at Bates, and was the saxophone section leader this year.  Last summer, Matt interned at Octagon, a sports marketing group that represents athletes like Seth Wescott and Michael Phelps.  In previous summers, Matt has enjoyed his work as a camp counselor.  Matt is looking forward to sharing stories of Olympians, jazz combos and the howling winds of Patagonia with his Apogee groups this summer!  Matt is certified in Wilderness First Aid and CPR.

Victoria Schmidt

Victoria Schmidt - croppedVictoria Schmidt is a rising Junior at Yale University, where she studies History.  Growing up in Irvington, New York, a hilly, picturesque town on the Hudson River, Victoria fostered a keen interest in the outdoors from a very young age.  In addition to her love of the outdoors, Victoria has always been a serious athlete.  She’s played soccer, track, and ice hockey, and is an outstanding swimmer and skier. At Yale, Victoria is a member of both the club soccer and club cycling teams.  She is interested in sustainable farming, and has worked as a livestock and vegetable field tour guide, as well as public programs intern at New York’s Stone Barns Center for Food and Agriculture.   Last summer, Victoria spent six weeks in Provence, France, studying in a French language immersion program, and spending her weekends traveling and hiking throughout France.  In previous summers, she has worked as a camp counselor in Vermont, and ,as a camp counselor, had the opportunity to go on hiking and backpacking trips with her groups.  Victoria has backpacked in the Swiss Alps, Chilean Patagonia, and Turkey.  She can’t wait to share stories of her adventures, and her love of food with her groups this summer!  Victoria is certified in Wilderness First Aid and CPR.