Assistant Director of Outdoor Education (10-month position w/12 month benefits)

Job Description

With over 100 years of history, Colgate Outdoor Education is a highly successful program known nationally for its focus on leadership, teaching, and skill development.

Colgate Outdoor Education provides Colgate students with leadership, wellness, personal growth, sense of place, and community-building opportunities through outdoor and experiential programs.

The Assistant Director of Outdoor Education is a 10-month position which collaborates with the director in the oversight of sixty student staff and providing year-round outdoor and experiential programming to the Colgate community.

Founded in 1795, the village of Hamilton was recently named one of the friendliest towns in the United States by Forbes Magazine. Outdoor Education is housed in Basecamp, formerly the Colgate ski haus, now a rustic office space on the edge of campus, complete with kitchen, fireplace, and equipment rental center. Right next door, in the Huntington Gymnasium, the Angert Family Climbing Wall provides a teaching and training space and a home for the local climbing community. Right out the back door, on the old ski hill, are miles of running, mountain biking, and cross country skiing trails across the 575-acre Colgate campus.

Just an hour from campus, the six-million-acre Adirondack Park provides world-class outdoor recreation opportunities. For whitewater kayaking, upstate New York's intensive hydrologic development lends itself to regular releases on classic runs such as the Moose, Beaver, and Raquette rivers. The Adirondack anorthosite is a high-quality granite-like rock, perfect for both sport and traditional climbing, with over 1,600 recorded routes. In the winter, the park freezes over to create many destinations for skiing and ice climbing. The legendary Shawangunks Ridge, or “the Gunks,” is just three hours away with some of the world's best multi-pitch traditional climbing and bouldering.

Academic Year Programming & Instructor Development Accountabilities:
• Scheduling, logistics, and marketing for the Physical Education (24-32 programs per year) and Backyard Adventures programs (36-40 programs per year).
• Developing policy and curriculum, instructing, and supervising students in the rock/ice climbing and/or whitewater kayaking skill areas.
• Planning, marketing, and leading all aspects of academic break trips (i.e. Fall, Winter, and Spring).

Angert Family Climbing Wall Accountabilities:
• Overseeing all aspects of the Angert Family Climbing Wall – budget, staffing, training, route setting, special events, risk management, etc.
• Organizing and planning of the annual Colgate Climbing Competition – budget, route setting,
Banff Mountain Film Festival Accountabilities:
• Managing the annual presentation of the Banff Mountain Film Festival World Tour – budget, contracting, venue, marketing, sponsorship, and day-of operations.

Specific responsibilities include but are not limited to:
• Assisting with the instruction of staff training classes and expeditions in backpacking, canoeing, and/or winter camping.
• Assists with the Wilderness Adventure pre-orientation program as needed.

The Assistant Director of Outdoor Education collaborates with the Director in the oversight of sixty student staff and providing year-round outdoor and experiential programming to the Colgate community.
Professional Experience/Qualifications:

One year of professional trip leading experience.
Familiarity with climbing wall management and operations.
Personal climbing ability at an intermediate or higher level (rock and ice) and/or whitewater kayaking ability in water up to grade III/IV, both strongly preferred.
Experience with institutional rock/ice climbing and/or white water kayaking, both strongly preferred.
Outstanding leadership, communication, and interpersonal skills, including the ability to work effectively with a diverse group of students, faculty, and staff.
Excellent organizational skills and the ability to plan, prioritize, and delegate across multiple projects.
A clear commitment to the university's academic mission and appreciation of its liberal arts curriculum.
Solid familiarity with technology including the Google Apps suite as well as Microsoft Word, Excel, etc.
Must be able to mentor college students in leadership, teaching, risk management, and technical skill development.
Preferred Qualifications:

Three or more years of professional trip leading experience.
Knowledge of experiential education theories and methods.
Experience running an indoor climbing gym and/or route setting.
Personal sport/traditional lead climbing/multi-pitch ability at an intermediate or higher level (rock and ice) and/or whitewater kayaking ability in water up to grade IV/V, both strongly preferred.
Experience working professionally with collegiate outdoor programs, outdoor pre-orientation programs, and/or outdoor education programs such as Outward Bound or NOLS.
Experience in additional outdoor pursuits is desirable, including, but not limited to: cross country or telemark skiing, mountain biking, sea kayaking, stand up paddleboarding, challenge course facilitation, lightweight backpacking, geocaching, fly fishing, etc.


Bachelor's degree
Master's degree in a related field (Outdoor Education, Recreation, Parks/Tourism, etc.) preferred.


A current driver's license and clean driving record/ability to pass the University's Motor Vehicle Check criteria
Current certifications in WFR (or WEMT) and CPR and ability to maintain.
Must have or be able to obtain in the first year of employment, certifications from the AMGA (Single Pitch Instructor) and/or ACA (L4 Whitewater Kayaking, L4: Swiftwater Safety and Rescue).

Physical Requirements:

The ability to pass a DOT physical exam (a commercial driver's license is neither necessary nor required).


Evening and weekend work is expected.

Apply Here:


Application Closing Date: 
Not Specified
Application Contact Email: 
Employment Type: 
Job Region: 
Job Location: 
Hamilton, NY
Job Salary Range: 
Job Experience: 
1 - 2 years
Job Degree Level: 
Bachelor's degree

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