Staff Spotlight: Melissa Paradis

Marketing Manager


Melissa Paradis is the Marketing Manager for the Outward Bound Services Group. She grew up in Kansas and has lived in Washington, DC, Seattle, Australia and now Colorado. She enjoys reading about Mt. Everest, going on walks with her dog, and watching scary movies.

What is your favorite travel memory?

When I was a junior in college, I studied abroad for a semester in Australia. It ignited my love of traveling and meeting new people.

It took me out of my comfort zone, and that's why I love the work that Outward Bound does so much—we give people the opportunity to realize what they can achieve when they try new things and challenge themselves.

How have you changed/grown since working for your current company?

I've realized the power of the outdoors and nature. The wilderness is transformative for so many reasons. Not only are there so many wild places to appreciate, but you can learn so much about yourself by spending time immersed in nature. It's life-changing to take time to slow down and recognize what's important to you.

What is the best story you've heard from a return student?

I've heard so many amazing stories, it's hard to pick just one!

My favorite stories are from people who haven't had much experience in the outdoors and are nervous going into their expedition. They return more confident and in amazement of all that they've achieved. I think that's so inspiring and such a reminder that "there is more in us than we know."

If you could go on any program that your company offers, which one would you choose and why?

If I could, I would go on every single expedition we offer.

The Joshua Tree to Florida Keys Outdoor Educator expedition is a very exciting program. You get to experience two vastly different regions of the world while learning skills to thrive and work outside. It's 55 days full of skill-building, forming connections with your crew and seeing some of the most beautiful wilderness areas.

What makes your company unique? When were you especially proud of your team?

Each person at Outward Bound has a genuine, invested interest to offer life-changing experiences. Our mission, "to change lives through challenge and discovery", is really a motto that we hold ourselves accountable to.

At the end of the day, we all want our students to have an experience that helps them to realize what they are capable of.

What do you believe to be the biggest factor in being a successful company?

It's very important to be transparent and authentic. If someone invests 30+ days in one of our programs, that's a big commitment in terms of their time and resources.

We strive to make our programs the best so that our students can have the best possible outcomes and experiences possible.

If they are successful, we are successful.