Join a team of current and aspiring outdoor educators to expand your teaching and leadership skills. Backpack across the tundra and paddle past tidewater glaciers in Prince William Sound. Climb soaring peaks in Alaska’s Talkeetna Mountains or Chugach Range. Keep an eye out for Dall sheep, moose, and caribou, as well as coastal wildlife like sea otters, seals, and porpoises. Along the way, develop the skills you need to lead, manage risk, and teach in the wilderness.
Starting with basic outdoor skills, you’ll build a toolkit of teaching and leadership techniques to use while leading groups on land and water. Practice fundamental skills like navigating off trail and assessing marine hazards—with additional emphasis on how to teach these skills effectively. Earn your Leave No Trace Level 2 Instructor Course certificate and dive into topics like facilitation, plant and animal identification, and environmental issues.
As the course progresses, expect to lead discussions and present lessons to your peers. At the same time, practice giving and receiving feedback. Work on managing group dynamics and communicating effectively while resolving a group conflict. Grow your problem-solving and risk management skills while navigating river crossings and ocean currents. Return with the skills and experience to advance your career as an outdoor educator.
“I learned that I can survive and even thrive in conditions far suprassing what I believe to be my limit. There were numerous times when I simply wanted to stop and give up. Stop climbing, stop paddling because I couldn't feel my arms anymore or because my legs burned. I wanted to stop because I was scared, because I thought I'd reached my limit. And yet I continued. I'd take one more step, one more paddle stroke. My legs still hurt and I was still terrified that I'd tumble down the mountain face. My arms were sore and I worried that waves could capsize us. But I was two more steps or strokes closer to the destination. Broken into steps and strokes, the insurmountable became surmountable.”