Kevin Rockey '10
Aho Mitakuye Oyasin is a sacred Lakota phrase that carries the weight of a prayer. Meaning “All My Relations,” the phrase is a blessing to, and an invocation of, the collective society of spirit from which an individual arises. “It pays tribute to all of the people who have contributed to who you are today,” says senior Kevin Rockey of the phrase he recently learned. The 22-year old see this phrase as an illustration of life. “I have a lot of friends here, some of them very close,” he says. “You start to incorporate them into who you are.”
The behavior people exhibit and choices they make piqued Kevin’s interest early. What also grabbed the psychology major’s attention were the adventures to be had outdoors. Growing up in urban Rochester, NY, Kevin was disappointed with the limits of his Eagle Scout experience. He was hungry for more boundary breaking and more outdoor challenges, saying, “that started my environmental mindset.”
GMC and its GreenMAP program have been a perfect fit. Kevin has been a GreenMAP expedition leader and has taken courses that have shaped him permanently, like the Leave No Trace certification course, which gave him “the know-how and awareness of environmental practices. It has definitely incorporated itself in my actions, in who I am.”
Though a part of the GMC choir, mentoring club, and honors club, Kevin’s recent focus has been applying his outdoor skills in a therapy environment. Working over the summer with the SUWS wilderness therapy program for troubled youth, Kevin has laid the foundation for a future career helping others explore their psyches and face their demons through wilderness exploration. “It’s hard. Sometimes you get those very rewarding moments, where you can see breakthroughs.”
After graduation, Kevin plans to work with SUWS and travel. At the top of his list is biking through Ireland. “I have always had an adventurous spirit,” he says.
By Ryan Dixon '11