Life Academy Gets Up in the Air at Berkeley Ironworks


When Berkeley Ironworks partnered with the Life Academy of Health and Bioscience, we were excited not only to introduce a potential new generation of climbers to the sport, but perhaps also a new generation of healthcare professionals! Life Academy is a small Oakland public school that serves children in grades 6-12 and gives its students a rigorous academic experience in health and bioscience fields. 

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One of the many things that makes Life Academy unique is Post Session, a two-and-a-half week period at the end of the year that is dedicated to experiential field trips designed to expose students to new challenges and opportunities. This past May, Ironworks partnered with the 7th grade Post Session, “Up in the Air,” to give students the opportunity to try both bouldering and top roping. “The wonderful belay staff coached our students to new heights,” said Shelley Goulder, a Life Academy teacher. She was kind enough to pass along some comments from the students as well:

“I had a great time,” said Ricardo S., “I didn’t think I’d like climbing, but I was so motivated to try harder routes and make it up the wall.”

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“At first, I didn’t even want to try it!” Liz G. exclaimed, “but then I made it up a few moves, and I felt myself getting over my fear of heights.”

“Climbing put me in my challenge zone,” Nevin G. reflected on the experience. “I wasn’t comfortable, but I wasn’t panicking. I’d like to try it again!”

Natalie R. was even more ambitious: “I loved the challenge of getting up one route and then trying another one. The ones with the overhangs are my favorite.”

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Thank you Life Academy! Your curiosity and drive to try new things truly inspired us all.

If you’d like to know more about our outreach programs, contact us at (510) 981-9900.