Project U.S.E. [urban suburban environments] » Programs » Wildcat Mountain Wilderness Programs
Wildcat Mountain Wilderness Programs

Wildcat Mountain Wilderness Center

Adventure-based Experiential Education

Our Wildcat Program provides outdoor adventures to thousands of young people and adults every year. Our adventures are designed to support New Jersey’s Core Curriculum Content Standards (NJCCS) in the areas of Character Education, Environmental Education, Service Learning and Arts and Literacy in a manner that is fun, challenging and memorable. The Wildcat Program is primarily based at our Wildcat Mountain Wilderness Center nestled deep within a 50,000-acre natural area in northern New Jersey. In these beautiful surroundings, participants can hike and backpack, challenge themselves using team initiative activities, rock climb and rappel, experience a ropes course, and canoe.

We don’t limit ourselves to Wildcat Mountain, though. Our programs include extended expeditions to places in New Jersey and beyond, including the Delaware River, the Pine Barrens, Barnegat Bay, New England, West Virginia, South Dakota, and New Mexico. The Wildcat Mountain Program provides a unique teambuilding experience to school groups, state and local youth agencies, colleges and universities, and recreational clubs. Each summer we offer an array of Open Enrollment Programs that include single-day skill-building courses and multi-day expeditions to far away places.

Project U.S.E. Wildcat Program - Experiential Education for Teens and Adults

Michael Bagley Photography

“Phil Costello’s vision for Project U.S.E. will always live: to provide people of all ages, enmeshed in modern-day life, with opportunities to undergo positive, personal growth through wilderness experiences and journeys. Those journeys occur as much out in the wilderness as in each one of us. Since 1982, almost 1,000 children, teenagers, and parents have joined us in sharing outdoor education with Project U.S.E. They continue to attest that their participation was, and for many still is, a life-altering revelation. No one EVER forgets a Project U.S.E. trip.”

—Bill Schroeter, Director, Wall Youth Center
“Survivor of over 60 Project U.S.E. trips, and still counting.”

Project U.S.E. Wildcat Program, Experiential Education for Teens & Adults, NJ

“The YouthWORKS students came away from the Project U.S.E. experience with a new appreciation and respect for the outdoors. They understand that it is okay to be fearful and to try new and exciting feats. They are proud of themselves and ready to face any new challenge that comes their way because of Project U.S.E. Thank you for sharing this opportunity with our students this summer. I hope to be able to present this opportunity to future YouthWORKS participants. Once again, thank you, for sharing your warmth and compassion for the students of Newark through this program.”

—Lakeisha Brooks, Interim VP and Chief Program Officer, Communities in Schools of New Jersey