Pinnacle Scholarship Program

What Is The Pinnacle Scholarship Program?

The Pinnacle Scholarship Program provides full-tuition scholarships to attend an Outward Bound backpacking course. This program is open to any motivated youth from under-resourced communities.

These scholarships come from Outward Bound California's vision to open access to safe, transformational outdoor experiences to students from economically vulnerable communities and communities of color or other non-dominant identities, regardless of ability to pay. Transportation stipends are available.


Who Qualifies and How to Apply

Applications for 2024 are open! The priority deadline has passed, but limited spots remain. Apply soon, as applications will close when courses are full. Expedition dates are below.

  • Students nominated by current program partners of Outward Bound California have priority registration. Nominators can be current program partners, or any supportive adult. Please use this form to nominate highly motivated youth from your school or organization to become a Pinnacle Scholar. Nominees are also required to fill out an application form, link below. Please note that a parent or legal guardian must sign their application materials.
  • If you are a youth who will be between the ages of 14 - 17 at course start, complete your application form here. You can still apply without a program partner or nominator, but will need a parent or legal guardian's signature on the forms.

Further Details

Please review our Essential Eligibility Criteria when nominating a student or completing your own scholarship application.

Review our COVID-19 Practices page for details on OBCA's pre-course requirements, and our on-course policies.

Here is the Packing List for both courses


2024 Course Options

Applicants will apply for a specific course, and some will be selected to participate on one 14-day expedition. Pinnacle scholarships are offered to youth (ages 14-17 at course start) from under-resourced communities in California who are personally motivated to attend an Outward Bound course, and for whom a full scholarship would remove financial barriers.

Pinnacle Scholarship Course:

Meeting Location: Fresno Airport, course will take place in the High Sierra

Course dates: July 3-16, 2024

Activities: Backpacking, Rock Climbing

Pinnacle LGBTQ+ Scholarship: Offered to LGBTQ+ youth seeking an affinity space. The course is staffed with instructors who are part of the LGBTQ+ community. Staff strive to create a safe space for teens who have experienced being marginalized due to their identity, and/or are exploring their sexual and/or gender identity to build community and cultivate self-efficacy.

Meeting Location: Fresno Airport, course will take place in the High Sierra

Course dates: July 3-16, 2024

Activities: Backpacking, Rock Climbing

Students, Partners and Prospects!

Please review the Pinnacle handbook for a course overview and expectations and guidelines.

Prospective partners, please contact Eli Fox, Outreach Coordinator at [email protected].

If you are interested in learning more about opportunities to fund access to these experiences, please contact Matt Patchell, Development Officer, at (415) 316-0571 or make a gift designated to "Scholarship" programs.

Other Scholarship Courses

Youth Leadership Corps

High Sierra Backpacking & Rock Climbing for POC Young Adult

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