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Nonprofit Job in Santa Cruz California


  Field Instructor Job viewed 470 times.
  Job Description

Job Title: Field Instructor, Youth in Wilderness Program

Employment status: Seasonal Independent Contractor (hiring begins May 1, 2017)

*start date depends on date of hire

Hours: approx. 30 hours per expedition (this includes prep time as well as time spent in the field).

Pay: $15/hour


Who we are: Founded in 1998, the Ventana Wilderness Alliance (VWA) is a California nonprofit corporation dedicated to protecting the wildlands of California's northern Santa Lucia mountain range. VWA is composed of people from all walks of life who share a love of Wilderness and a goal to ensure it remains wild in perpetuity.


The mission of the Youth in Wilderness (YiW) program is to inspire, educate and motivate future generations of central California's wilderness advocates and stewards. Supported by preparatory classroom workshops, YiW organizes, outfits and leads elementary to university-aged young people in central California multi‐day wilderness backpacking expeditions through the Ventana and Silver Peak Wilderness areas. These life‐changing experiences are provided at no cost to participants.


Who we are looking for: We are seeking a passionate, motivated, professional and organized person to lead and/or co-lead backpacking expeditions as a YiW Field Instructor. The ideal candidate has experience leading youth outdoor education experiences (particularly backpacking expeditions) and has some familiarity with the Big Sur backcountry (Ventana and Silver Peak Wilderness areas).


Duties of this position include:

  • Leading at least 2-3 expeditions per field season.
  • Facilitating pre and post-expedition classroom visits.
  • Following inventory control and gear maintenance protocols.
  • Communicating with the program’s education partners to plan expedition logistics.
  • Expedition debrief sessions with Program Manager.


Essential skills/traits:

  • Valid driver’s license and clean driving record are essential. Owning a car is a plus.
  • Weekend availability is essential.
  • Passion and commitment to youth outdoor education.
  • Timely and professional communication is a must.
  • Ability to connect with youth (particularly from underrepresented and at-risk backgrounds).
  • Reliability – always following through on one’s commitments.
  • Flexibility/Adaptability – Leaders must be ready to lead rain or shine but also be ready for partner cancellations due to weather (or other reasons).
  • Wilderness First Responder Certification is ideal; Wilderness First Aid Certification is a plus.
  • Fluency in Spanish is a plus, but not required.


Please note: this is a seasonal position. Our program follows a normal school year so our field seasons are Spring (approx. Feb-May) and Fall (Oct-Dec). Summer is typically our off-season as the Big Sur backcountry becomes inhospitable during those months.

  Metro Area Santa Cruz CA
  Job Location City Santa Cruz
  Job Location State California
  Job Location Zip 95061
  Job Location Country United States
  Compensation Hourly From: $15.00 To: $15.00
  Job Category Advocacy, Education and Training, Youth Programs
  Prefered Experience 2 year(s)
  Job Type Contract
  Language 1 Spanish ( Speak )  
  Job Posting Date Apr. 19, 2017

Organization Details

  Organization Name Ventana Wilderness Alliance
  Organizational Focus
  Contact Person Toan Do
  Contact Phone (831) 423-3191
  Contact Fax none posted
  Contact Email
  Web Address http://PO Box 506

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