Welcome to Trailhead!

Trailhead Academy Philosophy

Trailhead Academies bring together an interesting, talented, and motivated group of incoming first-year students and introduce them to each other, Appalachian, and a winning model of contribution and service.

Trailhead is based on this core idea: the most important quality of a leader is the ability to see the world through the eyes of others. This requires self-evaluation, reflection, and openness to other points of view. At Trailhead, we discuss this simple but critical idea and its components: empathy, humility, reflection, flexible reframing, and engagement with each other. We introduce ideas that might be uncomfortable at first, but will eventually become the foundation for students who want to contribute to the lives of others and to the quality of their communities. We ask participants to be honest, open, patient, and courageous. We ask those students who talk a lot to be quiet, and we ask quiet students to speak. We have lots of fun and we're sometimes very serious.

We believe that students who want to contribute should be intentional about how and how much they will contribute, and should make a thoughtful commitment to participate in the AppState community. We believe this is the way we leave our legacy.

Academy attendees will be encouraged to apply their new knowledge in the clubs and organizations at AppState and with other service based organizations.

Who attends Trailhead Academy?

Incoming first-year and transfer students at Appalachian who exhibit emerging leadership characteristics, a desire to make a difference, and an inner drive for leaving their mark are invited to start college in a big way. All sessions take place on-campus, and participants stay in residence halls during the academy.

Please not that Trailhead is an on-campus summer leadership program. While we will have some fun outdoor activities, the program is not focused around outdoor programs. If you are interested in outdoor leadership, check out the First Ascent website.

Trailhead Dates and Cost

  • Dates: June 24-27, 2018
  • Cost: $150.00

How do I apply?

For information about the application process, check out the "How to Apply" link. The cost to participate is $150, which includes lodging, food, and activities.

Contact the Office of Leadership Development in the Department for Student Engagement & Leadership with any questions at (828) 262-6252.

Contact Us

Rm. 244, Plemmons Student Union
263 Locust Street
Boone, NC 28608

Monday - Friday: 8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.

Any questions about Trailhead Academy?
Contact Keith Norris, Trailhead Program Director

Visit us in the Lee H. McCaskey Center, located in Plemmons Student Union Room 244.