OCONTO COUNTY, Wis. (WBAY) - Wisconsin hunting is steeped in tradition. Deer camp stories become legend and are carried down through generations. Some Wyoming college students have traveled 1,200 miles to learn about the tradition on the hallowed hunting grounds of Oconto County.
Their teacher is Dr. Scott Weslow. The Aurora BayCare cardiologist loves being in the woods. Weslow and his daughter, Juliette, hunt together on their family land in Oconto County.
"Hunting is something you can learn a lot from," says Dr. Weslow. "It's a very educational experience, and it builds a lot of character, and I think you can develop a lot of good qualities like patience and fortitude."
Juliette moved away to attend classes at Wyoming Catholic College. It's not a place to find white-tailed deer.
Her enthusiasm for hunting inspired the college to agree to a trip for a group of students to spend a week in Oconto County learning how to hunt.
"It's great just to be back and do it again with having him here and back on our land where it all started for me, and it's now starting for my friends as well," says Juliette.
The liberal arts school has a keen interest in the outdoors. Students take outdoors trips each semester and receive grades for their work.
"The college believes in educating the mind, body and spirit, not just the mind that so many colleges do, and these outdoor experiences are really a large part of that body and spirit education," says Dr. Weslow.
Dr. Weslow teaches everything from shooting a bow to processing meat.
"All the trips have skills they learn how to do. All the skills have challenges, because you have to push yourself," says Father Paul Ward, chaplain, Wyoming Catholic College. "None of them are really easy, and a lot of virtues involved in that, and you see students stepping up to the plate and growing in wonderful ways."
It's the first bow hunting experience for junior Grace Klein. The Oregon native is no stranger to the woods, but it's her first time learning the skills for deer hunting.
"It's kind of exhilarating," Klein says.
Dr. Weslow says, "That to me, gives me the most pleasure. To be able to give somebody that first experience, like I gave to my kids years ago, that's what owning land like this is really all about is sharing it."
Juliette Weslow says, "It's really changed me in so many ways, so I just love to see people experience how it is different from anything else you do in the woods."
Freshman Hiram Gleason has hunted several times -- even bagging a doe and a buck. He's still learning important lessons from this outdoor class.
"You're not in control out there. You can try to be in control, can do all the right things, but it really comes down to what almost seems to be luck," says Gleason.
Grace Klein is on a mission.
"Actually, the other day, I was like.. I will not quit hunting until I shoot a buck," says Klein.