| May 9, 2005
To Whom it May Concern:
I have been asked to provide an observation of Mark St. Johnís program at St. Johnís College. I feel especially able to do so because:
* I hold a Ph.D. in Leisure from the University of Utah;
* I taught outdoor leadership programs at college and universities;
* I have personally observed Markís program as I accompanied Mr. St. John on training exercises and outings; as I have by comparison, enjoyed sitting in on a number of academic seminars on your campus.
My daughter, Sarah Shepherd, is a graduating senior at St. Johnís College. When she entered as a freshman, I was concerned that the academic program was so rigorous, there may not be sufficient attention to the ďwhole man,Ē (borrowing from Aristotle). So it was that I toured the campus and was pleased to see the commitment that the institution placed on fitness and lifetime activities through the construction of the fitness center and through its outing programs. Markís program has been a great resource for students to pursue positive extracurricular outlets on your campus.
As an experienced whitewater rafter and canoeing instructor, I observed Mark during a trip down Cataract Canyon in Canyonlands National Park, Utah and later, during a training exercise on the Chama river in N. New Mexico. I was impressed with Markís outdoor leadership skills, his large group organization, safety protocols, and his ability to provide necessary safety and outdoor leadership instruction. Mark and his program provide a vital and necessary element to the milieu of the St. Johnís College experience. His presence is an asset to your institution.
I appreciate the education and experiences that you have provided Sarah in her quest for knowledge. St. Johnís College deserves the high regard that it enjoys as one of the best institutions of higher education in the nation.
Very Truly Yours,
Connor W. Shepherd, Ph. D.
21841 Swale Avenue
Parker, CO 80138