Youth Job Board

Field Instructor Posted Nov 30
Cottonwood Institute , Denver, CO
About Cottonwood Institute

Cottonwood Institute (CI) is a 501(c)3 non-profit that provides environmental education and service learning programs for middle and high school students. Our mission is to connect underserved students to the natural world and empower them to take action to improve their schools, the community, and the environment for future generations. CI partners with local middle schools, high schools, and youth organizations to connect students to the outdoors through environmental education and service learning projects. We run programs in Boulder, Denver, and Aurora and trips throughout the Colorado Front Range.

Position Description

Cottonwood Institute is looking for inspiring and passionate field instructors to lead 1-5 day camping programs throughout the year. Programs include: Leadership and Teambuilding Overnights, Endangered Wolves Project, Fire Ecology Project, and Community Adventure Programs. CI partners with local schools and youth organizations to connect students to the outdoors through low impact camping and service-learning projects. Most programs are based in close proximity to roads throughout the Front Range, however, several programs venture into more backcountry areas throughout Colorado.

Responsibilities and Expectations:

Attend annual Cottonwood Institute Instructor Training (March 8-10, 2019)
Oversee risk management during programming activities and be responsible for the safety of all participants and volunteers.
Follow CI Emergency Action Plan and Risk Management protocol identified in CI Risk Management Plan.
Communicate clearly with CI Administration, Co-instructors, and Partner Organizations.
Conduct yourself in a professional manner at all times.
Attend pre-course meeting and packing with instructors and program staff to discuss the program schedule and main activities.
Drive students to and from sites and occasionally lead volunteer drivers with maps and good directions.
Facilitate groups of teens (and/or adults) in the field and create a physically and emotionally safe space for participants to experience themselves and the natural world.
Model impeccable camping, leadership, communication, and expedition behavior skills to the group and other instructors.
Implement assigned service projects when applicable.
Manage food, cooking groups and outdoor kitchen.
Record experiences with pictures, video, and participant quotes.
Complete post program logistics: return gear and rental vehicles, complete program paperwork, write blog post for the CI website, attend a post-program reflection meeting with co-instructors and program administration.

Minimum Qualifications

Must be 21 years or older.
Current certification in Wilderness First Aid and in CPR or ability to obtain before March 2019 (Wilderness First Responder preferred)
Valid drivers license, good driving record, and competency driving 15 passenger vans.

Required Competencies

Outdoor Trip Leading Experience:

Competent using and maintaining camping gear and equipment.
Understanding of group camping and group field logistics with teens.
Experience leading, instructing, or teaching teens in the outdoors including: outdoor cooking, Leave No Trace (LNT), backpacking, and general wilderness living skills.

Communication and Teamwork:

Outstanding people skills, ability to work well with adults and teens.
Written and verbal skills in English primarily for emailing and scheduling with multiple people.
Willingness to be flexible with changing conditions and program demands.

Cultural Awareness:

Experience working with students from a variety of cultural and economic backgrounds, including under-resourced neighborhoods.
Understanding of inclusion, equity, and diversity and interest in furthering this work personally and within the organization.

Passion for education and the environment!

Excitement for blending service-learning, environmental education, and outdoor education to craft and implement powerful programs.
Passion for connecting with teenage students and empowering change.
Personal environmental ethic and awareness.

Preferred Competencies

Spanish Language:
Fluency with speaking and writing Spanish to communicate with parents of participants.

Environmental Education Expertise:
Extensive toolbox of trip leading, teambuilding, and teen leadership skills.
Experience teaching primitive survival skills.
Experience in the field of environmental education, implementation, and evaluation of successful programs.

Team oversight and/or management experience.
Ability to take initiative, including assigning tasks to others.
Experience giving and receiving direct feedback.

Local Knowledge:
Familiarity with Denver-metro area, urban, and Front Range trails.
Knowledge about local flora, fauna, and environmental issues.

Compensation: This is a temporary independent contractor position. Contracts are picked up as schedules permit. Compensation will be based on experience ranging from $75-$150/field-day.

Scheduled Trip Contracts Available for Spring 2019:

Thursday Winter Field Day March 15; Thursday-Friday Overnight April 18-19; Monday - Friday 5-day Mission:Wolf Trip May 6-10; Saturday - Sunday Overnight May 18-19; Monday - Friday Workshops July 8-12 and July 22-26; Monday - Friday 5-day Mission:Wolf Trip July 29-August 2

There is opportunity for continued summer employment through Thorne Nature Experience in Boulder if desired.

To Apply: Send cover letter, resume, and contact information for three professional references to Contracts open until filled.