Dartmouth Skiway appoints new director

by Maud McCole | 2/27/20 2:10am

2-27-20-news-skiway-paulakutschera

Dartmouth is one of only two colleges in the United States that operates its own ski mountain.

by Paula Kutschera / The Dartmouth Staff

On May 1, Mark Adamczyk will take over as the Dartmouth Skiway manager, becoming the fourth director since the Skiway’s opening in 1957. Doug Holler, who has served as director for 19 years, will retire in May.

Adamczyk has worked in Winter Park, CO for the past 15 years. He is currently the director of outdoor adventure at Winter Park Resort, where he develops programming outside of the traditional ski experience — including snowshoeing, guided tours and night programming. Before that, Adamczyk worked in mountain operations where he learned the safety and regulatory processes that go into operating a ski mountain. Adamczyk said this experience will serve him well when he starts at the Skiway. 

“[I] learned a tremendous amount about safety and regulations,” Adamczyk said. “Which sounds boring — but is really the most important thing about operating a ski area.”

After working at Winter Park Resort, which serves nearly a million skiers and snowboarders each year, Adamczyk said he is eager for the transition to somewhere smaller and more community-focused like the Dartmouth Skiway.

“I’m very interested in being at a place that has such an incredible history of skiing,” Adamczyk said. “You really get to make decisions that have a lot to do with skiing and not just business.”

Adamczyk said he is interested in expanding the Skiway’s terrain park and exploring options for uphill and offseason programming. He said that his priority will be maintaining a balanced program that caters to all of the Skiway’s patrons. 

Holler said he plans on staying in the Upper Valley area after he retires and is eager to see what Adamczyk will do at the Skiway. 

Among those who participated in the selection process for the new skiway director was Dartmouth ski patrol co-director Raiden Meyer ’20. Meyer noted that Dartmouth is unique among many ski mountains in having a student-run volunteer patrol, and the directors of the Skiway patrol team work closely with the Skiway director throughout the season. As he helped interview potential candidates, Meyer said that he was looking for someone who values student voices. 

“I was looking for someone who’s really able to work with students,” Meyer said. “[Someone who will] really treat the students as the valuable additions that they are.” 

Dartmouth is one of only two colleges in the United States that runs its own ski mountain, along with Middlebury College in Vermont. According to Dartmouth Skiway’s website, the skiway was founded in 1957 in order to continue Dartmouth’s “preeminence in skiing” both in terms of “competition at the ski team level and of recreational skiing for the student body generally.” 

Meyer said that he sees the Skiway as part of Dartmouth’s larger engagement with outdoor learning and education.

“[The Skiway is] something that positions Dartmouth as incredibly unique among the Ivy League and other colleges,” Meyer said. “We can point to the Skiway and things like Oak Hill and other Dartmouth outdoor facilities and say this is how the school enables that outdoor learning experience.”

Adamczyk said that he is also excited to experience the combination of athletics, student leadership and community that he witnessed when he visited the Skiway in December. He said that one of the things that drew him to the Skiway was the way it encapsulates what he loves about the sport.

“I think the Skiway is in a position to really focus on that core bit of the joy of skiing and riding and what’s so rich in the culture there,” Adamczyk said. “That’s kind of what I want to pursue there.”

Both directors of the student ski patrol said they are grateful for Holler’s time as director and his contributions to the student program. They also said they are excited for Adamczyk’s transition. 

“Whenever a transition happens, it’s kind of an open door to new ideas,” said ski patrol co-director Honor Paine ’20. 

Raiden Meyer is a former member of The Dartmouth staff.

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