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Awards RecognitionThe American Adventure Service Corps began in August 1996 in Morganton, North Carolina as an experiment in a new type of program design to partially address the needs of young people utilizing the theme of outdoor adventure and service to others. Originally, the program targeted 25 boys and girls, ages 13 to 18. The concept has expanded to include 8 to 12-year-olds in a branch called Little Scouting Outward. The original unit maintains approximately 50 members along with a growing list of graduates, many of whom still participate in summer expeditions while in college.

Mike Fischesser conceived the idea and developed the program to be a hybrid of philosophies and methodologies between Boy Scouts of America and Outward Bound, since both organizations had been a major part of Mike’s life. He wanted to create a year-round structured environment with unique fun and high-powered adventures, including service activities that would provide educational opportunities to keep members active and committed for many years.

After three years of extremely successful program development, Mike decided to replicate the model on a national level with the vision of having TAASC units available to many more young people.