** Now Offering $1,000 Sign-on Bonus **
Our next Field Instructor Trainings are September 2nd-8th, September 30th-October 3rd, and October 21st-27th!
Who We Serve and Our Mission:
Blue Ridge serves youth ages 13-18, young adults ages 18-29, and their families. Families or individuals may seek us out for a variety of reasons: anxiety, depression, substance abuse or other addictions, coping with loss, and many other challenges. Our Mission is to teach individuals and families the skills needed to be aware of and act on their values.
Whatever the circumstances, our approach starts with curiosity, empathy, and mutual respect. We believe that if our students can better understand themselves and their choices, they’ll be better equipped to make safer, healthier decisions in the future.
We’re Looking to Hire Those Who:
Field Instructor Duties:
As a Blue Ridge Field Instructor, you work as part of a team. In a typical week, 3 or 4 Instructors will be with a group of 6-12 students. While working, staff live outdoors, with their group, 24-7. We are primarily a nomadic program, meaning we embrace the wilderness aspect of wilderness therapy by continuously staying in an outdoor setting. Unlike some other programs, most of our students are driven to and from a base camp each week– meaning more time with nature.
First and foremost, Instructors are responsible for managing the physical and emotional safety of each student and the student group as a whole. Field Instructors also play an integral role in delivering our curriculum and helping students see the connections between their thoughts, feelings, and choices.
While working in the field, Field Instructors can expect to backpack, sleep under tarps, cook meals over a fire, practice Leave No Trace ethics, administer medication, provide 1st aid as needed, and generally teach students how to practice healthy self-care and self-reliance. In addition, staff demonstrate healthy boundary-holding and communication skills. You’ll lead group discussions, games and initiatives, and complete written reports of how each student is doing every week. Our dedicated staff are with students to provide support during their most difficult moments as well as their biggest accomplishments!
We invest heavily in ongoing staff development. Each Field Instructor at BRTW participates in experiential training prior to hire (week-long and half-week options available), and is mentored by therapists and other senior staff during their entire employment. We also provide weekly ongoing education to staff that covers a variety of clinical and risk management topics. There is opportunity to advance as a Field Instructor, and we often hire internally from our current staff who are seeking growth in the program.
Schedule and Logistics
Field instructors work an 8-day on, 6-day off schedule (typically working Tuesday-Tuesday, and then off Weds to the following Monday). For the entire 8 days, instructors camp and live with the students in a wilderness setting. Blue Ridge provides all necessary group gear and emergency/ safety equipment. Instructors are expected to provide their own personal gear to keep themselves safe, comfortable, and effective while on shift.
Your 6 days off are yours to use as you please. The only requirement is that you are back and ready to work your next scheduled Tuesday morning. Staff accrue 2 weeks of PTO per year– and when Instructors take a week off of work, they suddenly have 20 days off in a row off– plenty of time to rest, travel, and pursue your own adventures!
Location and Field Area:
Our headquarters is in Clayton, GA. Clayton is a small town that provides direct access to our field area. Most staff reside in Asheville, NC, Atlanta, GA, Greenville, SC, or Clayton itself. Staff are free to live wherever they choose, however, Blue Ridge is not able to provide staff housing. During their off time, Instructors often get together to climb, paddle, or hike the trails around North Georgia and Western North Carolina.
Our field area spans the southern Appalachian Mountains and includes portions of the Chattahoochee-Oconee and Nantahala National Forests. The field area is forested with rolling hills, rising to ~ 4,700 feet. There are several waterfalls, historical sites, and scenic overlooks within the field area, including Rabun Bald, the second highest peak in Georgia
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