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Brandon Ritter seeks to connect with Eberly students during First-Year Explore trip


Recruitment specialist Brandon Ritter will combine his passion for helping Eberly students with Brandon Ritter stands in front of a canyon with a river at the bottomhis love of the outdoors as he joins the College’s Adventure WV Explore First-Year Trip, July 22–27.

Participants in the Eberly Explore trip will earn college credit while enjoying West Virginia’s natural beauty in a small group setting. The trip goes to Seneca Rocks, Seneca Creek Backcountry and the New River Gorge National Park. 

The trip will be led by four student leaders: Savannah Bayes, Jaden Wiser, Liza Wan and Timothy Schumann. 

Ritter, an avid backpacker and general nature enthusiast, will join in on the adventure to connect with incoming Eberly students and offer them unique perspectives and information specific to the Eberly College.  


Q: Why did you want to go on the Explore trip?

“Going on this trip gives me another opportunity to show our incoming Eberly students that I am a real person, and I am always ready and happy to assist them with anything they need – whether it is in the classroom or out. Helping people goes beyond higher education and I'm hoping to normalize serving my students as humans, beyond what my job description states.”


Q: What can students expect?

“Students can expect a variety of outdoor experiences, from backpacking to rafting down the New River! For me, going out into the woods brings so much joy and relaxation, so hopefully everyone else on the trip can expect those too.”

Q: What do you hope students take from this experience? Brandon Ritter holds mug while standing in the forest with trees all around

“Getting away from everyday modern life is always uncomfortable in some way. I find it incredibly refreshing, and it pushes me to challenge myself in ways beyond what I see in the woods. So, hopefully we can all have an amazing shared experience and push ourselves to become better people. I'm hopeful that students can take away lifelong friends from the trip in doing this.

"I also hope students discover their love for the outdoors and camping; it took me until I was 20 years old to discover my love for the hobby. I'd imagine if I had gone on an Adventure WV Trip, I would've gotten into it a couple years sooner than I did.”

Q: What are some of your favorite backpacking trips?

“Most recently I spent five days in the Grand Canyon. Outside of being one of the top 20 hikes in
the world, it was extra special for me because I was able to take my dad with me! Ritter hikes in the grand canyon with his dad

In my travels, I've fallen in love with the desert, but of course the hills of WV have my heart. Frequently, I go to Dolly Sods, Seneca Backcountry, Roaring Plains, Seneca Rocks, New River Gorge and many other places.”

Students interested in going on Eberly’s First-Year EXPLORE trip can find more information and register on the Adventure WV website. All equipment is provided, and no prior outdoor experience is necessary.

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