Welcome to the Montana State University Outdoor Recreation Program. We are dedicated Students, Staff and MSU community members who work to provide outdoor recreation opportunities and education to all members of the MSU Community.

Our Mission

The MSU Outdoor Recreation Program engages, develops, and empowers the leaders of tomorrow using the outdoors as our classroom.

Program Core Values

Leadership: We develop the leaders of tomorrow by utilizing outdoor recreation as our laboratory. Our graduates are well equipped to lead others against the challenges that face our world.

Community: We believe in a robust community of learners and adventurers who grow and develop together. Our graduates embody that belief through intentional community building and effective communication skills.

Self-awareness: We foster a space for students of all backgrounds to develop an awareness of themselves. Our graduates posse a growth mindset and robust critical thinking skills that apply beyond the boundaries of outdoor recreation.

Our Staff:

Ty Atwater

Ty Atwater: ty.atwater@montana.edu

Director of Outdoor Recreation Programs

Ty grew up in the pacific northwest spending as much of his time as possible outside on the river or exploring local climbing areas.  After completing his undergraduate studies at Oregon State University where he worked as a student trip leader and member of the climbing gym staff, he left to pursue a career in fisheries and wildlife biology.  Quickly realizing that his time spent mentoring and teaching others about various outdoor recreation activities was his true calling, he turned down further work as a fish biologist and moved into his Subaru Loyale wagon at Smith Rock State Park in Oregon.  After spending time as a climbing guide, lift operator, wilderness medicine instructor, and exploring Patagonia he returned to Oregon State University where he worked in a variety of roles for the Adventure Leadership Institute.  His time in Corvallis was spent refining his outdoor education, student and leadership development skills.  He and his wife and their son are excited to join the outdoor recreation community in Bozeman and at MSU and are all looking forward to winters with snow on the ground and ice to climb.  If he’s not in the office you’re likely to find Ty exploring the local trails and crags with his family or out on a long run.

Dan Sandberg

Dan Sandberg: daniel.sandberg@montana.edu

Assistant Director

Dan grew up in the great state of Maine, before moving to Vermont to pursue cross-country ski racing as a student at Saint Michael’s College.  During his first year Dan got involved with the college outdoor program, eventually leaving competitive skiing behind to focus on working as a trip leader.  After graduation, Dan decided to pursue outdoor recreation as a career.  He has worked as a guide and instructor throughout the Northeast U.S., Colorado and Utah, as well as internationally in Bolivia.  Dan began his role at Montana State University in July, 2017 and is thrilled to be in Bozeman and to join the team at the Outdoor Recreation Programs (ORP).  Right now his obsessions are backcountry skiing, mountain biking, and whitewater travel of any sort, but climbing has always been a passion, and he is excited to take advantage of all the great local climbing options Bozeman has to offer. After work, you’re most likely to find him exploring the local crags, trails, and rivers, or at a local coffee shop.