Employee Spotlight

Campus Recreation relies on a staff of over 150, most of whom are University of Montana students, to provide excellent customer service to our community. We recognize those who go above and beyond their job description in the areas of reliability, quality of work, initiative, leadership and community service. Thanks to all of our employees for making Campus Recreation a place to thrive!

Eliza Maleski

eliza.jpgEliza Maleski

Eliza Maleski is a Montana native and joined us from the big city of Boz-Angelos. She is one to always be fired up about about something and will not hesitate to tell you about it. At UM she is majoring in Human Geography and Parks Tourism and Rec Management. She is a bright student but mostly you'll find her skiing, mountain biking, running, climbing and smiling out in the wild outdoors.  

Eliza has worked at the Outdoor Program since December of 2020, but it feels like she has been with us forever. She was a Freshman Wilderness Experience (F.W.E.) student in 2019 and a F.W.E. leader in 2020 and 2021, and last summer she also took on the role of the F.W.E. student gear coordinator. Eliza’s constant desire to grow and learn has left her with multiple certifications and unique outdoor recreation experiences.

She took the American Mountain Guide Association Climbing Wall Instructor course, she got her Wilderness First Responder certification, her Avalanche 1 certification, took a semester long Wild Rockies Field Institute course for UM credit, and is now registered to take her Avalanche level 2 course this winter.  Eliza has taught a “fundamentals of climbing class” (1 credit), worked “Women’s Climbing” nights and “She’s Gays and They’s” nights at the climbing wall, taught a Backcountry Ski Camping class (1 credit) twice, led multiple cross-country ski classes and is leading a week-long canoe trip over Spring Break on the Green River in Utah.

Needless to say, Eliza is one motivated individual. Not only is she graduating early, she consistently tackles any challenge head on with an openness to learn and grow. Eliza is humble, professional, open to feedback and puts people at ease. Several of her students on her F.W.E trip this past summer told me that she was an absolute hero and complete bad ass. She did carry a participants’ pack in addition to her own for 3 days straight. Another example of how she is game for whatever/whenever, is she volunteered to hike 26.2 miles in a day along the Swan Crest in order to help a bike shuttle happen for a co-worker. This was no small feat! Students and co-workers alike love working with Eliza. She is highly respected by friends, co-workers, students, professors, and supervisors and is a good friend and confidant to many. She is a strong Montana woman who loves teaching others, long runs in the mountains, skiing in deep powder and being immersed outdoor spaces.

Though we have not quite accepted the fact that Eliza will be graduating already and leaving us, we know she will go far and do great things. We are so proud of her focus and determination and will miss her greatly. Best of luck Eliza.

Sam Severson

sam.jpgSam Severson

Sam Severson came to us from the big city of Manhattan, Montana – just outside of Bozeman. He landed on studying Anthropology and Spanish at UM after switching majors 3 times.

He grew up hiking the many trails surrounding the Gallatin Valley and horse packing in the summers with his family. He now enjoys rock climbing, backpacking, rafting, car camping, exploring the outdoors, and driving in his car for hours on end for little to no reason at all. He is also a master duct-tape repair artist and he can take whatever kind of food he has available to him, mix it together, and whip up the most sub-par meal you’ve ever had. Despite growing up near the ski-town of Bozeman he does not care what season it is currently; he is ready for winter to be over. 

Sam took the American Mountain Guide Climbing Wall Instructor course and the Intermediate Climbing class and has worked at the Outdoor Program since the fall of 2020. It feels like he has been with us much longer, however. Sam is a kind, genuine, hilarious and humble individual. He puts people at ease and has a big impact on his students and co-workers alike. Sam is dedicated to outdoor recreation both in his professional and personal life.  Sam has taught a backpacking class (for 1 credit) twice, a fundamental of rock-climbing class (for 1 credit), is working a week-long backpacking trip in Utah this spring break, was a Freshman Wilderness Experience student his freshman year and a F.W.E. leader for 3 years. Sam also worked in the rentals department at the Outdoor Program and is always happy to answer questions or put freshman at ease.

Sam is in the NROL (Northern Rockies Outdoor Leadership) certificate program and was one of the first students to enroll.  The Northern Rockies Outdoor Leadership Certificate is a trans-disciplinary program at the University of Montana, in which students from any major can earn a NROL certificate.  Students gain and strengthen leadership skills by engaging in diverse conceptual courses and outdoor field settings. He is also in the Frankie Global Leadership Initiative which is a four-year, 12-credit certificate program that provides undergraduate students experiences through a community of leaners.

When Sam is not working on his degree or working at the ODP, he can be found planning his next road trip to somewhere warm, wearing his muck boots around town to protect him from winter, listening to Australian rock or dumpster diving for pizza. We will miss Sam’s sense of humor, genuine teaching style and laid back, humble nature. Best of luck Sam!

kendall.jpgKendall Butler

Kendall Butler is a senior majoring in public health with a minor in Spanish. She joined us from the west coast just south of San Francisco. She has worked at the Outdoor Program since the beginning of her sophomore year in 2019.

Since working at the Outdoor Program Kendall has immersed herself in the outdoor teaching role on many levels. As a freshman she took the Intermediate climbing class (a 2-credit course) and has since taught that class 3 times. She took the American Mountain Guide Association Climbing Wall Instructor Course and has worked as a climbing wall monitor, a route setter, has worked “Women’s nights”, “She’s Gays and They’s” nights, multiple fundamentals of climbing classes, cross country ski trips, she was a Freshman Wilderness Experience leader and last year was the food coordinator for F.W.E. She also served as the student climbing wall manager for a year. She worked the rentals desk starting the summer of 2020 which was one of our busier summers yet.  Needless to say, Kendall is one to jump in with two feet to just about anything she is passionate about.

Kendall loves to rock climb and enjoys teaching others just as much. Whether its prospective climbers, students in the classes she instructs, young females, or the Outdoor Program staff, she has acted as both a mentor and a magnet for bringing people together from different backgrounds. She fosters an environment of learning and growth. Kendall has worked hard to help build a community based on inclusion, inspiration and motivation to make outdoor recreation accessible to all.

Kendall is also passionate about social justice. She is confident in her beliefs and uses he voice to take stands on important issues in hopes to make changes. She is a champion for making all areas of outdoor education accessible for all. She feels strongly about inclusivity and making people feel welcome and comfortable, despite your skill level. In addition to her love of rock climbing, she also enjoys backpacking, slack lining, skiing (backcountry, downhill, cross country, you name it…), trail running and generally anything outdoors. Between her love of the outdoors, advocacy work with SARC (Student Advocacy Resource Center) on campus and her rigorous academic schedule within the Davidson Honors College, she keeps herself highly involved in leadership roles on campus. When not studying, teaching, or adventuring, you can find cooking, hanging out with friends or playing music.

Kendall’s presence will be greatly missed at the Outdoor Program but we know that whatever she does in the next phase of her life, she will succeed. 

phil.pngPhil Buttschardt

Phil Buttschardt is a senior majoring in PTRM (Parks Tourism Recreation Management) within the Frankie College of Forestry and Conservation. Phil was born and raised in Ogden, Utah along the Wasatch front. Phil joined the Outdoor Program family spring semester of his sophomore year in 2019.

He took the Intermediate Climbing class and the American Mountain Guide Association Climbing Wall Instructor course, and quickly after those classes jumped into teaching climbing classes for the Outdoor Program. Phil has taught the Intro to Indoor Climbing class (a 1 credit class) 3 times. the Intermediate Climbing class (a two-credit class) and the leading and beyond class both two times. He was a Freshman Wilderness Experience leader for two summers taking incoming freshman backpacking for 4 days before the start of school.

Phil helps to create a positive and ego-free atmosphere at the climbing wall and the Outdoor Program. He works in the rentals department as well and is happy to answer questions or chat with customers about whatever. Phil is community oriented and has an incredible quality of connecting with all sorts of people. He spends so much time at the wall, that almost everyone who frequents the wall knows him. He consistently makes people feel welcome and supported.

Phil served as the student climbing wall manager, a primary route setter and is a “dyno” (a type of climbing move) master. He puts so much into everything he does and as the climbing wall manager, he focused on inclusion and staff development by building personal relationships with all staff members. He is a people person and connects easily with people. He is a mentor, great instructor, and a joy to work with. His peers respect and admire him, as do his students. This year in his Intro to Climbing class, many of his students became obsessed with trying to do “dynos by Phil”. They obviously look up to him and had a blast in his class.

When Phil is not at the climbing wall, he can be found playing outdoors with his friends or spending hours (and hours) playing Dungeons and Dragons, chess, video games, or sports.

Students who have had the opportunity to learn from or work with Phil are lucky. He is friendly, humble, professional, organized and fun to be around. We look forward to seeing where Phil goes and wish him all the best. Thank you for all of the work you have put into the ODP, Phil!

Hali Adamshali-adams-pic.jpg

Hali has been a part of our Intramural Sports staff since January of 2019.   Hali started out as an official, officiating basketball, softball, and volleyball.  In January 2021 she was promoted to Student Manager, where she provides outstanding leadership in the day to day operations of intramural sports, supervises and mentors her peers, and frequently deals with unruly intramural participants.  All of these attributes are things all Student Managers have had to deal with over the years, but what has been different for Hali is the fact that we currently have the smallest and least experienced intramural staff than we ever have had in the last 2 decades.  Plus, she is helping rebuild our program, just as many programs, that have been devastated by the pandemic.  This fall she only had one returning official, otherwise everyone was in their first year of officiating.  She accepted this challenge well, by actively mentoring each official and helped to manage participants behaviors and attitudes.   Working as the Student Manager for Intramurals with both officials and participants, there is little recognition, appreciation or empathy for everything that goes into the position and all that is asked of it.  Hali has ensured the success of all intramural programs during a time when we are trying to rebuild. She does this by having a positive attitude, standing her ground when needed, being open to other’s ideas, providing meaningful feedback to those people she supervises, and being consistent in her management of participants.  One intramural official spoke to our program director about Hali, “She is great, she commands respect and hold us to high standards, but never with an authoritative way, she does it by being engaged with us, not above us.”  Hali has exceeded any expectation given to her, she goes above and beyond to assure the success of the intramural program at the University of Montana.  We cannot wait to watch the program grow even more under her leadership!