Two decades ago, The Colorado College began an experiment of creating a space for reflection in order to enhance learning. This experiment began in 1987 when English Professor Joe Gordon led his class on a field trip to facilities owned by the Aspen Institute in Crestone, Colorado. Surrounded by mountains, streams, wildlife and forests, the students’ engagement with class material was clearly enhanced.
As a result of Gordon’s recommendations, the College leased three condominium units and the conference center from the Aspen Institute and a fundraising campaign was initiated. In 1990, with the special support of Trustee Emeritus Jerome McHugh, a townhouse, the conference center, and adjacent land was purchased. In September of 1992, the 7,000 square foot lodge was built with help from then Trustee Edith Gaylord Harper and the El Pomar Foundation. In 2003, a computer laboratory was added. Since 1987, more than 30,000 students have been involved in the educational and reflective aspects of the campus.
The campus is in use (by CC classes and groups, and both CC and non-CC conferences and meetings) year-round.