National Environmental Summit for High School Students

Empowering students to discover how to create the change needed for a sustainable future.

Redesigning Our Future

The National Environmental Summit provides an exciting week of field expeditions, innovative thinking, and career experience.  Students have a chance to see what it is like living on a college campus and learn from nationally renowned scientific explorers who are trailblazers in the field of environment and sustainability. 

Join us for an experience of a lifetime!

July 9-13, 2024

To apply for the National Environmental Summit for High School Students, please submit the information form below:


Students will have the opportunity to:

  • Strengthen creative and collaborative thinking skills
  • Delve into individual interests to imagine innovative solutions to environmental challenges
  • Work with college professors and environmental leaders
  • Build relationships with like-minded individuals
  • Explore the 189-acre Fred Stanback, Jr. Ecological Preserve
  • Experience college life for a week 
  • Meet National Geographic Explorer Dr. Baker Perry, who leads climate science research on the world’s highest peaks, finding more life than ever expected! Read more below:

Keynote Speaker: Baker Perry, Ph.D.

Baker Perry - Dawa Yangzum Sherpa/National Geographic for Perry_Khumbu_Icefall
Perry at Khumbu Icefall (Photo: Dawa Yangzum Sherpa/National Geographic) 

Dr. Baker Perry is a National Geographic Explorer and a Professor at Appalachian State University in Boone, NC. He is one of a handful of scientists working at the highest elevations of the planet to understand climate change impacts on the critical water towers that sustain hundreds of millions of people downstream. In collaboration with The National Geographic Society, the Government of Nepal, Tribhuvan University, and Appalachian State University, Dr. Perry co-led the expeditions that installed the highest altitude weather station network in the world on the south side of Mount Everest in Nepal and directs the ongoing operation and maintenance activities. The 2019 expedition was reported in a feature-length documentary; articles in the National Geographic magazine (including online here and here) have added to the coverage, with hundreds of millions of views worldwide. He and his colleagues have published many scientific papers on the network, including being featured on the front cover of the Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society in 2019 and 2022 (the latter broke the news of the summit station, recognized by Guinness World Records as the highest weather station in the world). Dr. Perry also has worked extensively at the highest reaches of the Andes Mountains in Bolivia, Chile, and Peru, where he and his teams have investigated climate and glacier changes and associated impacts on water resources.

Baker Perry Mt Everest- Ngawang Tenzing Sherpa/National Geographic
Perry at Mount Everest (Photo: Ngawang Tenzing Sherpa/National Geographic)

Explorer Experience
Dr. Perry has 30 years of alpine mountaineering experience that includes multiple ascents to over 26,000 ft on Mount Everest in Nepal Himalaya and over 21,000 ft in the Andes for as part of scientific research expeditions. He has spent extensive time working on glaciers above 16,000 ft – nearly six months in total, including almost one month above 20,000 ft.  He has climbed to his team’s weather station at 18,536 ft on the summit plateau of the Quelccaya Ice Cap in Peru 22 times since 2014.

Scientific Credentials
Since receiving his Ph.D. in 2006, Dr. Perry has published 47 research papers that have been cited over 1,000 times. He is a member of the American Meteorological Society, American Geophysical Union, and the American Association of Geographers.


Focus Groups

Students will choose one of the focus groups below as part of their Summit experience:


Learn More:

Read more, make payments, and more below:



Environmental Summit Sponsors



If you have any questions or concerns, please don’t hesitate to contact us at or 704-637-4791.