Phil Costello, Founder and Director of Project U.S.E. lost his year and half long battle with bone cancer on December 11, 2005. Phil was 64. A former marine, Phil became a teacher at Trenton NJ high school in the 1960’s, working with kids everyone else had given up on. During those early years he spend his summers helping to build Hurricane Island Outward Bound, becoming one of their first Instructors.
Returning to Trenton, Phil helped found Action Bound, an outdoor education program for inner city youth. Action Bound would go on to be the catalyst for founding Project U.S.E in 1970. In later years, Phil went on to found Baltimore Island Outward Bound and be part of a small group of people that founded A.E.E. (The Association of Experiential Education). As mentor to many people in the field of experiential education Phil was instrumental to helping numerous programs throughout the country get their start. As a member of numerous educational associations around the state of New Jersey, he was a vocal advocate for environmental and experiential education.