One of the most popular types of summer adventure camps are directed at teens. There are many companies that have focused on this niche. They take co-ed teens on sweet trips to the outdoors. For many teens it is their first outdoor experience and you get to help share your love of the wilderness with them. This is the perfect job for any college student looking for a fun way to spend the summer.
The trips usually last 3 to 5 weeks. They are usually focused on one specific geographic region like Hawaii, the Pacific Northwest, Alaska, the Caribbean, New England, Central America, or the Appalachians. You’ll do all sorts of activities.
If you work in the mountains, you’ll rock climb, hike, backpack, raft, or mountaineer. If you’re near the ocean you’ll be SCUBA diving, surfing, sea kayaking, or sailing. You get a taste of all aspects of the outdoors in a short time period. It’s awesome.
Leading a trip of teenagers can be challenging. Teens are often at an awkward age. You’ll have to encourage a nurturing, positive environment while ensuring that kids have a blast. The experience is something they will never forget. You’ll be a role model and mentor to the kids. Working with teens takes a lot of responsibility. You need to be ready for that before you sign on for an adventure.
In order to get these jobs, you’ll need some qualifications. Usually you have to be 21 years old and commit to working from June to August – that’s usually when you’re out of school anyways. First aid training is mandatory. Most groups require a Wilderness First Responder course, which is a 10-day in-depth first aid course. You’ll also need outdoor skills in the activities you’ll be leading. Many will look for prior experience working with teenagers. And a clean driving record is key. If you plan to work abroad on a trip, you must be fluent in that language. There are lots of requirements, but nothing that is too extreme. The jobs usually require interviews, which will help you highlight your strong points.
These trips provide you with a paycheck too. You may make a set $2,500 for a summer or you may be paid $1,000 to $1,500 a month. It’s decent pay when you consider that all your room and board is paid for. Plus you won’t spend too much because you’ll be with kids 24 hours a day 7 days a week. Besides traveling between activities, you’re also in a wilderness setting most of the time. You won’t be spending your paychecks too quickly.
You’ll be impressed with the options available to you.
If you’re ready to work with teens and trek through Peru, surf in Australia, sea kayak in Mexico, sail in the Virgin Islands, backpack in Washington, summit beaks in British Columbia, rock climb in Colorado, canoe in North Carolina, or SCUBA dive in Belize – then look into working outdoors for an adventure trip company.
You may want to look for jobs at reputable companies like Wilderness Ventures, Moondance Adventures, Outward Bounds, or any number of others. Check out AdventureCamp.com for both job postings and employer overviews.
Working as an adventure trip leader will be a thrilling adventure and you’ll be stoked to see how happy the great outdoors make teenagers. For many, it’s a life changing experience that you’ll play a major part in. You may find you’ll be working this job every summer. It’s as close to perfect as a job can be.