Meet Russell

November 16, 2021

Russell Hobart | Assistant Director of Climbing Programs | Campus Rec | Six Years

What's the name of your hometown?

Chicago (that's my excuse for being too direct)

Describe your role as  Assistant Director of Climbing Program .

I run the climbing walls, along with some of the more advanced climbing trips. I also work closely with our Expeditions program and the rest of Carolina Adventures.

What do you like most about your work?

Definitely working with the students. Climbing can be a powerful tool to build their self-efficacy for anyone but particularly people who are going through so much change. Creating, maintaining, and empowering that space for their growth brings me deep satisfaction.

Is there a lesson learned from working through the pandemic that you are applying now that students are back on campus?

Zoom has proven a quality escape valve, when schedules are tight or if you have to get together a large group.

What's your favorite work memory?

Relatively early in my career at UNC, we were running our section of Fall Fest. Shortly into the event, the skies opened up, lightening was striking and we had to quickly run for cover. A bunch of us stuffed ourselves into a van. Here we were- in our god-awful, polyester-blend, neon t-shirts pasted to our bodies, 90 degrees, 100% humidity and we were all having a great time. I've had the thought at other times too, but it came to me "this is a great group of people."

What's one of your favorite things ( Examples: sports team, car, child, activity, etc.)


What are you listening to? (music/podcast/ book)

Music (a student reintroduced me to Paul Simon's Graceland), Podcast (anything by Malcolm Gladwell), Book (Nightingale by Kristen Hannah)

Is there anything else you'd like to share?

Working across the different departments at UNC, I've always found folks working to find a way to say "Yes." I really appreciate that.

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