The 2016 Mount Rainier Challenge 4 Charity Fundraising Climb

UPDATE JUNE 6, 2016: The Foster MBA team successfully summited! Thank you to everyone who donated and put in the hours to help us raise over $4,000 for charity! Climbers from left to right: Nelson Tang, Jason Matta, Morgan Connelly, Chris Burd, Andrew Rieck, Travis Vaughan, Joe Dennis (not pictured: Anna Bacheller)

UPDATE JUNE 6, 2016: The Foster MBA team successfully summited! Thank you to everyone who donated and put in the hours to help us raise over $4,000 for charity! Climbers from left to right: Nelson Tang, Jason Matta, Morgan Connelly, Chris Burd, Andrew Rieck, Travis Vaughan, Joe Dennis (not pictured: Anna Bacheller)

Why Rainier?

(JUNE 6 UPDATE: A team of 7 Foster MBA students successfully summited Rainier via the Disappointment Cleaver route! The team of 8 climbers (one did not summit due to illness) also raised over $4000 for the Special Olympics of Washington and the Boys and Girls Club! Thank you to everyone who helped support the team and the cause!)

Like many prospective MBAs, I struggled with choosing the right MBA program to apply to. Should I choose a program purely on ranking or prestige? Location? Job placement statistics? Plenty of top schools fit the bill. However, there was something about the Foster School of Business (University of Washington) that set it apart, something that no other program offered...and it described the Foster culture perfectly.

That 'something' was the story of Foster students who summited Mt. Rainier in 2011 and 2012. They worked hard as a team to make it happen, they did it for charity, and they did it without professional guides. They formed a self-selecting team with a variety of backgrounds and skill levels. They applied what they learned in the MBA program in a hazardous, challenging environment. This wasn't a formalized offering from the university - this was entirely student-led and self-supported. All it took was a small team of entrepreneurial students and a shared vision of what Foster students can achieve together.

We haven't been back to the top for several years, but I hope to change that. We have a motivated group this year and we're bringing back an organized training and team selection process. And we're starting early. It would have been easier to secretly select a few experienced friends and bring the Foster flag along, and it would have been easier still to hire a guide service to organize all the logistics and do all the heavy lifting to get us up to the summit. It would have been simpler to attempt the summit without a charitable cause.

But that's not what Foster is about. Foster MBAs are teammates. They believe that greater things can be achieved together by being inclusive and by leveraging diverse backgrounds and experiences. They believe in being a force for positive change, and they have the will to act. 

We hope that we can earn your support for the 2016 Mt Rainier Challenge for Charity Climb. The next few months of training will be strenuous, but our struggles pale in comparison to some of the obstacles that others face on a daily basis. By donating to Challenge for Charity, you will help support the Boys and Girls Club of Seattle and the Special Olympics of Washington. Help us empower those who are overcoming far greater challenges than we will encounter on the mountain.