Founded by Carissa Mueller and Meagan Harrison, OASIS was created in 2008; the idea behind it came from the combination of the founders’ passion for extreme outdoor sports and their interests in helping the at-risk youth population.

Carissa, now a junior at Duke University, and Meagan, now a sophomore at Elon University, wanted to provide students opportunities to participate in experiences they were able to participate in growing up, such as skiing and snowboarding, white water rafting, camping and hiking. They felt that such activities helped them to build character and confidence while they were growing up, and wanted to provide a way for students to gain these experiences who might not have the means to do so by themselves.

In the winter of 2008, they created a partnership with the Durham Nativity School and started working with their kids. They also partnered with Amanda Johnson, now a junior at UNC Chapel Hill, in the hopes of creating a tri-university collaboration.

In the fall of 2008 Meagan, Carissa, and Amanda recruited a handful of students from each of their individual universities to join OASIS and serve as team leaders on the retreats.

After almost two years of thoughtful planning, program construction, and many months of fundraising by applying for grants, teaching CPR  classes from which the proceeds go towards OASIS,  and gaining local sponsors, OASIS was finally ready to launch its first retreat, named OASIS Premier in the fall of 2008.

A second retreat followed in the spring of 2009 and our third retreat occurred in the fall of 2009.


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