The Colorado Outward Bound School (COBS) is a non-profit adventure-based education organization that emphasizes personal growth through challenge and experience. For over 60 years our wilderness courses have focused on inspiring responsibility, teamwork, confidence, compassion, and environmental and community stewardship.
Commitment to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion
Colorado Outward Bound School celebrates diversity and strives to create an inclusive environment for all employees. We are an equal opportunity employer and do not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, nation origin, age, genetic information, disability, veteran status, or any other basis covered by appropriate law. All employment is based on qualifications and business needs.
Working at the Colorado Outward Bound School means joining a growth-minded community where we are actively creating a more inclusive organizational culture. Our commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion shows up at all levels of the organization – in our trainings, in our meetings, on our courses, and in our daily lives. This work can be challenging at times and we are committed to navigating it together to create a supportive and inclusive environment for our staff and our students. To foster a more welcoming outdoor community for all, we are working to address barriers related to race, culture, socioeconomics, ability, gender identity, sexual orientation, geographic location, and mental health.
The COBS Instructor (I) position is an entry level instructional role based in either the Southwest Program (SWP) of Utah or the Rocky Mountain Program (RMP) of Colorado. This is a seasonal position starting in the summer and typically ending in August. There is a pre-employment training before the season begins.
A new instructor works under the direct supervision of the Lead Instructor or Course Director and is responsible for supervising, teaching and facilitating students in the field throughout the duration of our primarily wilderness-based courses. Instructors also support pre and post course needs through planning, packing and structuring the course, course debrief paperwork, safety analysis and gear cleaning.
At COBS we facilitate a variety of programming that requires a range of skill sets. This allows for different pathways into our instructional roles and increases access to working for COBS. Please do not let backcountry experience or technical skills be a barrier for you to apply. We are looking for skilled educators & facilitators, individuals who are passionate about working with youth, and love being outside.
Key Duties and Responsibilities
• Deliver the Outward Bound mission and Education Framework while teaching course components. Utilizing the instructor role to educate students about character development, leadership, and service
• Fully participates in course planning; including development of educational and technical curricula, route planning, food and equipment organization/packing
• Supports the other instructors and Course Director in all aspects of course safety; identifying, assessing and managing environmental and social risk
• Demonstrates the ability to behave as a role model for students, able to manage a range of student behaviors in a positive manner
• May be required to manage a student group and all emergencies in co-instructor’s absence
• Able to locate and use communication systems in the event of an emergency
• Utilize ‘Stop and Plan’ as a risk assessment and decision-making tool
• Follow warehouse and basecamp systems to ensure a high functioning basecamp and program. Packing, cleaning, repairing, and inventorying of gear and food
• Participate in the emergency on-call system by supporting evacuations and responding to field emergencies when needed
• Adheres to all local operating procedures, safety policies and emergency procedures outlined in the Field Staff Manual and Employee Handbook
• Provide clear, effective and timely communication with an Instructor, Course Director, Supervisor, or other staff. Committed to openly sharing and receiving feedback from staff
• Take photos while on course
• Committed to building a sustainable, equitable, and inclusive work environment where diversity is celebrated and valued across the COBS community, and our staff & students feel a sense of belonging.
Education and Work Experience
• Please see https://www.cobs.org/connect/employment/assistant-instructors/ for more information on what instructors need.
• Medical Certification: Wilderness First Aid & CPR at minimum, but higher level of certification (Wilderness First Responder WFR) needed for backcountry courses
• Mental Health First Aid Certification: Available trainings can be found at https://www.mentalhealthfirstaid.org/population-focused-modules/youth/
• Demonstrates group presentation skills
• Exhibits sound and accurate judgement
• Uses equipment and materials properly
• Reports potentially unsafe conditions
• Demonstrates the ability to behave as a role model for students and is able to manage a range of student behaviors in a positive manner
• Ability to effectively work on diverse teams or with a diverse range of people
• Experience working with youth
• Ability to demonstrate emotional regulation and balanced decision-making in stressful situations
• High level of professionalism with strong leadership attributes both in work and community environments
• Flexible, adaptable and open to change
• Strong personal motivation, initiative, follow through and commitment
• Ability to work both independently and cooperatively as a positive team member
• Strong and effective communicator, both written and oral. Ability to give and receive both positive and constructive feedback
• Able to prioritize and work on multiple projects simultaneously
Working Conditions and Physical Requirements
• Must be able to participate in all site and course activities and maintain ample energy, strength and focus to aid students and instructors, with our without reasonable accommodations.
• On feet most days – sometimes for up to 16+ hours a day, or possibly more in the case of an emergency
• Constantly works in outdoor weather conditions, occasionally during poor weather
• Ability to lift, crawl, bend, carry and pull. Work is sometimes done in confined spaces and at height
• Occasionally must carry equipment weighing up to 50 pounds
• Ability to participate in vigorous to moderate physical activity including but not limited to backpacking, rafting, and/or rock climbing
Compensation and Benefits
• Starting wage $105 per day
• Optional Accident Policy available
• Eligible for Professional Deals
• 56 hours sick /year
• Onsite housing option. Meals included in the summer months, depending on the program
• Click “Apply for this Position” below.
• Upload your resume, technical experience log, and answer the application instructions
• Supplemental documents can be uploaded as appropriate
• Applications accepted on a rolling basis