The mission of the Mt Hood Community College’s Wilderness Leadership and Experiential Education (WLEE) program is to foster the education of individuals to become outdoor leaders, guides and teachers competent in providing an outdoor experience in various activities and environments.
The WLEE program provides students with opportunities to learn technical skills in climbing, mountaineering, high-angle rescue, kayaking, rafting, and more. In addition to the technical skills, students are given opportunities to practice leadership skills, as well as the concepts and theory behind adventure education.
The program curriculum provides opportunities for individual certifications in Leave No Trace, Swiftwater Rescue, Rock Climbing, Wilderness First Responder, Avalanche Training, Challenge Course Operations, Rafting, and High-Angle Rescue.
The outdoor leadership practicum component incorporates leadership development, mastery of wilderness skills and backcountry expeditions under the guidance of qualified instructors.
Specialized training and experience is an asset for any job and a necessity for many jobs in the outdoor adventure and recreation fields. Employers are consistently looking for applicants who have demonstrated critical thinking and decision making skills, leadership experience, team building and group management skills while also possessing standard industry certifications such as Leave No Trace (LNT), Challenge Course Facilitation, Swiftwater Rescue, High-Angle Rescue, and Wilderness First Responder (WFR). An increasing percentage of the arts, entertainment and recreation industry is being captured by outdoor recreation.
Graduates of this program may find opportunities in adventure leadership programs, adventure and wilderness therapy programs, adventure travel and tourism businesses, college and university outdoor programs, commercial outdoor recreation businesses, ecotourism agencies, outdoor related publications, public and private school outdoor programs and outdoor retail operations.