Inspiring Alumni September 2020 - Outward Bound

Inspiring Alumni September 2020

Life after OB

We love that students express the impact of their OB experience in different ways: from continuing to explore and seek inspiration from te ao tūroa, mother nature, to creative expression like this amazing painting of Anakiwa by Jessie Magee. Please do share your stories, we’d love to hear from you.

Jessie Magee

Kupe 669

I am so very grateful for all of the people, places, and experiences I have encountered on this jam-packed 3 week journey.

I went in feeling unsure of the 13 new faces surrounding me, of the adventure, and of the lessons which lay ahead of me.

But it is true! There truly is something magic here. I have given, received, and learnt so much more than I could have ever expected.

From steering and sailing the cutters through 35-knot winds, to the sight of thousands of awe inspiring glowworms nestled in amongst the intertwined roots, caves, and soil of grand old forests.

What this place and its incredible people had to offer is something truly beyond what I, and my now 13 new whanau could have hoped for.

" He aha te mea nui o te ao, He tangata, he tangata, he tangata"


Jessie Magee

Jessie (centre, front row) and Kupe 669


Jessie's painting of the OB school's Assembly Circle.


Kylie Joy

McKenzie 642


Hi Outward Bound, 

I know I regularly give money to Outward Bound which I know is valuable to your organization. Tonight, I wanted to pass on my personal thanks to everyone to Outward Bound for what you have done for ME.

Since my time at OB, I have managed to repair my relationship with my Mum and strengthen my bond with my Dad. Also, I have even in these difficult times, changed employment recently (only made possible by the pandemic) to a vocation more appropriate for my skill set.

I have made difficult decisions such as leaving operations in St John Ambulance which I have volunteered for many years - but know this was needed to maintain my physical health. I have stood up for myself on more than one occasion, spoken up for colleagues at work when they were bullied or given a difficult time by staff members, they should have been able to trust. I have completely changed my whole attitude on life, am more appreciative of the simpler things and have a better relationship with my husband.

I have travelled in areas I didn't think I would be able to - including tramped the part of Stewart Island, sea kayaked, snorkelled, spotted Kiwi during the daylight, stone carved, and e-biked all the roads of Stewart Island (January just been).  I have travelled the length of the North Island by driving myself, went white water rafting down a 7m waterfall and tramped Hot Water Beach last winter, and did a whole load of bucket list items all by myself without needing my husband to hold my hand. 

I am more confident in myself, see going to work as an adventure not to be missed, and have fought some pretty major health battles - including cheating death 3 times in the past year. I have also lost almost 20 kg since I started training for OB in 2018. I know that I attribute these changes and achieving these goals because of OB. I never in my wildest dreams would have imagined that this would have been possible when I started getting ready to go to OB in June 2018. Thank you for this - I am a better person and I know that my Mum has noticed the huge changes in me - and it has only just been recently that she told me that she loves me very dearly and that I am very special to her. 

Thank you for giving me a second chance at life - and to have enough courage to step outside of my comfort zone and do things that I know very well I would not have had to guts to do before I changed in 2018. The quote (which is in The Challenge of Words) "Life is not a dress rehearsal" sticks very closely with me - and I regularly read a quote from the book and mull on how I can apply this to my life. 

My next challenges will to be to visit my Mum in Australia when the border opens (have not seen my Mum in over 6 years)and go back to Stewart Island and do the 10 day North West Circuit - a tramp that I eagerly await to do. These are challenges I would not have attempted if OB had not given me the skills and guts to do - I know that you say that I had this in me all along, but I could not see this until recently. 

Thank you once again - it is appreciated what OB has done for me - and continues to do. Thank you also, for the Inward Bound series that you put out over the pandemic time - I have looked forward to being regularly challenged and inspired. 

Onwards, upwards and please continue to enhance people's lives like mine.

Kylie Joy

(Front row, second from right in watch photo)