Assistant Director - Outdoor Leadership

Job Description

Gettysburg College’s Garthwait Leadership Center invites a professional outdoor leader with a student development orientation to join its team. Our department is a dynamic organization where every staff member makes a difference. We serve an increasingly diverse liberal arts community of 2,600 undergraduate students, including 20-25% first-generation college students and over 16% Pell Grant recipients. We recognize that excellence cannot be achieved without diversity, and we seek to recruit and retain a workforce that offers students and colleagues richly varied perspectives and ways of knowing and learning.

The Assistant Director plays a key role in providing and expanding leadership development services related to pre-orientation, outdoor experiences, and group development. The primary responsibility of this position is to support students in the design and delivery of custom experiential education programs on campus, at the challenge course and in remote backcountry settings. The ideal candidate for this position is passionate about the outdoors and student leadership development. They should be motivated to design experiences that help others discover and evolve their potential to be self-aware people with the capacity to have a positive impact with society.

This leadership educator will join a dynamic team that is integrating an outdoor experiential education program into a thriving leadership development center. They should be comfortable with ambiguity and excited to support a change process designed to enhance the student experience. This position will oversee sustainable growth and management of our Ascent Program, Gettysburg College’s longest running pre-orientation program, which is a student coordinated, student run trip program for incoming Gettysburg College students. 

Like all members of the Garthwait Leadership Development Center team, this person will mentor student staff, design custom educationally purposeful experiences and serve as a project manager for programs and events. They will benefit from continuing education and professional development opportunities. The leadership educator will participate in the hiring, training, supervision, and mentoring of student employees. This position reports to the Director of the Garthwait Leadership Center. Responsibilities in this position require a number of evenings, weekends, and weeklong commitments due to the workshop, trip, and training schedule.

Gettysburg College seeks candidates who have the communication skills and cross-cultural abilities to maximize their effectiveness with diverse groups of students, colleagues, and community members. Interest in creating an inclusive campus community, working with underserved populations, and a strong commitment to the liberal arts college experience is expected. The salary is competitive and is complemented with a superior benefits package.

If you have questions about this position, please reach out to Paul Miller, Director of the Garthwait Leadership center at [email protected].



  • A Bachelor’s Degree is required by anticipated start date in June 2020.
  • Instructional experience in either 1) a three to four season backcountry environment, with strong concentration on backcountry travel, technical sea-kayaking and/or climbing skills AND/OR 2) challenge course management and facilitation experience.
  • Excellent demonstrated ability to communicate verbally and in writing, including demonstrated cross-cultural competency in communications with diverse groups of students and colleagues.
  • Demonstrated ability to organize activities and projects.
  • Demonstrated ability both to work independently, and to work collaboratively and effectively with a diverse group of people in a dynamic environment.
  • Strong service orientation and the ability to interact positively with students, staff, faculty, and the public, as well as demonstrated commitment to participating in and building an inclusive, equitable, and diverse community.
  • Demonstrated knowledge of foundational and emerging outdoor leadership development environment, including experiential education philosophy, leadership development models and facilitation methodologies.
  • The ability to obtain a Wilderness First Responder certification within the first 60 days of employment
  • Driving is an essential function of this position; therefore a valid driver’s license is required.The successful candidate must have a favorable driving record as outlined by the College fleet policy.


  • Master’s degree in a related field (Education, Leadership, Recreation, Parks/Tourism, etc).
  • One to two years of work experience in leadership development, group development, or a related area, preferably in a higher education student development environment.
  • Knowledge of and experience with outdoor leadership development for undergraduates.
  • Association of Challenge Course Technology Level II Practitioner certification.
  • British Canoe Union or American Canoe Association paddle instructor certification.
  • Professional Climbing Instructors Association or American Mountain Guide Association instructor certification.

Gettysburg College, an equal opportunity employer, complies with all applicable federal, state, local laws and regulations regarding nondiscrimination. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment and admission. The College prohibits discrimination and harassment, and provides equal opportunity without regard to race, ethnicity, color, religion, national origin, disability, veteran status, marital/familial status, possession of a General Education Development Certificate (GED) as compared to a high school diploma, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, sex, age, or genetic information in all aspects of employment, educational programs, activities, and admissions. Pursuant to Title IX of the Education Amendment of 1972, Gettysburg College prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex (i.e., which includes but is not limited to the prohibition of sexual misconduct and relationship violence, including sexual assault and harassment) in all of its educational programs and activities.

To Apply


Application materials must be received by January 24, 2020. Anticipated start date is June 2020.

Please visit our website to submit application materials through our online hiring system:

Application Closing Date: 
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Employment Type: 
Job Region: 
Job Location: 
Gettysburg, PA
Job Experience: 
1 - 2 years
Job Degree Level: 
Bachelor's degree
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Job Details

Job Details: 
College/University (Non-Rec. or Educ.)
Experiential Education
Experiential Training & Development
Group Facilitation & Processing
Organizational Development

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