Employment Opportunities

Wilderness Awareness School is pleased to announce the following job openings:

2014 Youth Programs Summer Camp Lead Instructor

Wilderness Awareness School’s award-winning summer camps provide over 1800 youth per summer with a variety of opportunities to explore the natural world and their connection to it through basic naturalist studies, creative and self-directed play and exploration, and introduction to ancient skills of survival. Camps are one week long and may be day camps or overnight camps depending on the age group of campers. Lead instructors are scheduled for specific camps, providing opportunity for consistent mentoring of a small group of students throughout the week.


Lead instructors are responsible for collaborative facilitation of camps, and will work with a small group of other instructors and a coordinator to run the activities of camp. In addition, each instructor will lead a small group of campers in exploring the natural world utilizing Wilderness Awareness School’s model of mentoring. The goal of our instructors is to inspire campers and facilitate the spark or deepening of their connection with nature. In addition, lead instructors also support assistant instructors (volunteers) in learning more about working with youth in nature through role-modeling and one-on-one guidance.

Qualifications and Expectations:

  • Must have current certification in Wilderness First Aid and CPR
  • Must have good communication skills, ability to work as part of a team, and ability to communicate effectively with parents and park staff.
  • Must demonstrate good judgement
  • Must have a valid driver’s license and/or ability to arrange own transportation to various camp locations.
  • A background check is required.
  • Minimum age of 18, no upper age limit
  • Lead instructors must commit to at least 5 weeks of camp work, in addition to staff training and program planning time, unless by agreement with Summer Program Director.
  • Lead instructors must be prepared to participate effectively in a culture that promotes both giving and receiving feedback to promote professional growth and development.
  • Lead instructors must arrive at camp locations on time.
  • Lead instructors must uphold Wilderness Awareness School policies

Preference will be given to applicants who have:

  • Experience as a naturalist instructor working with youth ages 4-12 in an outdoor setting.
  • Experience with the 8-shields model and Coyote Mentoring method or the equivalent
  • Knowledge of Pacific Northwest hazards, mammals, tracking, edible/medicinal plants, navigation without map/compass, field ecology, trees, survival techniques, and birds/birdsong.
  • Participated in Wilderness Awareness School’s Residential Program, Community School, and/or Kamana Naturalist Training program.

Start Date:
Required staff training week is June 15-20, 9:00am – 4:00 pm each day (various locations).
Program Planning will be necessary for some staff and will be scheduled during the week of June 23-27.
Summer Camps will begin June 30th and will run through August 22nd.


Parks around the Seattle/Puget Sound, WA area, including in the foothills of the Cascade Mountains at our Duvall base camp.  Instructors should expect to be scheduled for multiple different locations through the summer.

Camp Hours
Hours for all day camps (ages 6-12) are 8:00 am – 4:00 pm, Monday through Friday.
Hours for all half-day camps (ages 4-6) are 8:00 am – 2:00 pm, Monday through Friday
Overnight camps (ages 11-18) run from Sunday morning through Friday afternoon.

**For day camps and half-day camps, the first and last hour of each day are reserved for program planning and debrief, with no campers present. For overnight camps, Sunday morning and Friday afternoon are program planning and debrief time with no campers present.


  • First-year lead instructors earn $480 per week
  • Second-year lead instructors earn $520 per week
  • 35 hours paid summer camp training
  • Paid program planning time for some camp types

How to apply:

Download an employment application from our website – or call to have one mailed to you:

Employment Application

Background Check Authorization Form

A complete application includes:

  1. Employment application form
  2. Current resume
  3. A cover letter explaining why you are interested in, and should be considered for, this position
  4. A complete background check authorization form.

Incomplete applications will not be considered.

Return via standard mail to:

Emily Gibson
Summer Programs Director
Wilderness Awareness School
POB 219, PMB 137
Duvall, WA 98019

The early application period closes November 15th, 2013

The regular application period closes February 1, 2014

Wilderness Awareness School is pleased to announce the following job openings:

Wilderness Awareness School does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, age, sex, disability, national or ethnic origin, or sexual orientation. We are an Equal Opportunity Employer.