Leadership Program Application
Thank you for your interest in the Outdoor Outreach Leadership Program. Each year, students 16-20 years-old from Outdoor Outreach (OO) programs are eligible to apply for participation on a twelve-week leadership training program in which they learn the skills and components towards being an Outdoor Outreach Instructor as well as leaders within their communities. There is no cost for participants and acceptance to the program is highly competitive.
What is the Leadership Program? The purpose of the program is to give young adults job training through an experiential introductory internship with a focus on transformative outdoor experiences. This program is composed of both outdoor, and indoor, hands-on learning experiences with an emphasis on civic engagement and leadership skills. Past graduates have used this experience to secure jobs in the outdoor industry and other employers, as well as to strengthen their candidacy for academic and work opportunities.
What does it mean to be a Leadership Participant? It means that you are actively working towards learning and performing at a proficient level in the outdoor activities offered by Outdoor Outreach. It means demonstrating sound Risk Management decisions while being held to the expectations of a professional in the outdoor education industry. These expectations include arriving to work on time, communicating in a timely and effective manner, respecting students and staff, modeling professionalism in the outdoors, attending trainings and meetings, and furthering the vision and mission of Outdoor Outreach. Acceptance onto our Leadership Program does not equal employment at Outdoor Outreach.
Participants safely learn how to instruct a range of outdoor recreation activities in a variety of parks, beaches, and open space areas including, but not limited to:
Joshua Tree National Park
Border Field State Park
Holcomb National Forest
Torrey Pines State Reserve
Cabrillo National Monument
Anza Borrego State Park
Mount San Jacinto State Park
San Diego National Wildlife Refuge
Through participation in the Outdoor Outreach Leadership Program, we hope participants experience:
- Increased confidence and ability to facilitate outdoor adventures for youth in a safe and fun manner.
- Continued involvement and/or employment as an outdoor leader for Outdoor Outreach or similar organizations.
- Increased perception of one’s ability to influence public policy and socio-economic barriers to accessing the outdoors.
- Increased ability and willingness to communicate with decision makers and advocate the value and necessity of protecting outdoor spaces and sensitive ecosystems.
- Increased self-confidence, self advocacy, self awareness, and positive self perception
- Increased levels of professionalism and workforce skills
- Increased ability to seek and qualify for employment opportunities
- Motivation to become leaders within communities and enact positive changes
What is your Commitment to Outdoor Outreach and the Leadership Program?
- An open mind and dedication towards our activities. We will be pushing our mental barriers by trying new experiences, which many of us may have never tried before.
- Respectful and professional manners towards your peers and staff members.
- Completion of the Leadership Program: This includes classroom lessons (Tuesdays, 4 hours after school) and field based learning lessons (Saturday's, 8 hours) designed for participants to gain experience as a field instructors as well as experience in essential workforce skills and office coordination. Activities and lessons are typically 2 days a week for 12 weeks. Exceptions to this schedule include two overnight camping trips held over two different weekends and a 5-day backpacking trip during spring break.