New Ropes Course Provides Entertainment and Education - - The News for South Mississippi

New Ropes Course Provides Entertainment and Education

Names like The Wild Whoozy, the Wobbly Log, or the Zip Line might sound like attractions at an amusement park, but they're actually ways you can learn better communication with co-workers.

"It was wonderful, after you let go, it's wonderful. Maybe not before you let go, but after. it's quite an experience when you come down," MGCCC President Dr. Willis Lott said.

Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College is opening their brand new ropes course with a high-flying adventure from this 38-foot tower.

"We have 12 low elements. Those are really designed for team building, trust, communication, problem solving," Wayne Taylor, Leader of Outdoor Rec Program, said.

And with all these challenges, student facilitators can gain more than just life skills, they can also score a degree.

"It's a two year degree, designed to have people work with commercial recreation, parks and recreation, schools, universities, that sort of thing," Taylor said.

For the students, learning not only takes place in the classroom, but also outside. On one element, the trust fall, you literally have to take a leap of faith.

"The idea is about building confidence in people. Letting them know you can trust others to support them in a time of need. It's going to be very important for our school system, our youth court, for major corporations that will bring their employees," Dr. Lott said.

So whether it's the Wild Whoozy-

"Two people traverse the wires, and they have to learn to balance against each other and trust each other as they go down the line," one facilitator said.

Or the Spider's Web-

"You pass people through to the right and you try to not touch any of the ropes," a facilitator said.

This ropes course is sure to challenge people of all ages, and all backgrounds, for a long time to come.

"It doesn't matter whether it's 6th graders, in an elementary school, to colleges, to corporate. I think if we design it right, everybody can benefit," Taylor said.

The ropes course cost about $41,000 to build and received major contributions from the Jackson County Supervisors and Singing River Electric. To learn how your group can join in on the adventure, call Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College at 866-735-1122.

by Keli Rabon

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