Outdoor Educator Training Program Portland
Become an outdoor and environmental educator trained in Trackers unique method of teaching wilderness skills and fostering connection to nature. Through this work study training program you join the Trackers Village as we learn about and live skills of land and community.
My experience as an EE student has pushed me and challenged me to grow in new and often frustrating and exhilarating ways. What appealed to me about Trackers versus other programs was the depth and diversity of skills taught to all ages. They offer everything from wilderness survival and homesteading to magic camp, and forest ninja, and they teach it all to five year olds as well as to 95 year olds. -Jenni Bradley, Environmental Educator Training Student
A two part program
This is a true work study program for outdoor and environmental education. You work and learn as an assistant in our youth camps and than study wilderness skills in our 1-year Trackers Village Immersion. These two parts combine to offer one of the most encompassing environmental educator training programs available.
Part 1 - Work study employment in our youth summer camps and programs
We hire you as a work study assistant for our summer camps. You earn a full-time seasonal wage for every time you work with our youth camps. You can use these funds to attend our Trackers Village Immersion program with the Outdoor Educator Training Scholarship.
Part 2 - Trackers Village Immersion with the Outdoor Educator Training Scholarship Attendance in the program enables you to take our year-long Trackers Village Immersion with a significant scholarship. We offer this opportunity to help build a community of educators capable of teaching authentic outdoor skills.
The base cost for the Trackers Village Immersion program is typically $1,795. While in this program, you get a $500 scholarship to the Trackers Village Immersion (for $1,295 in total tuition), plus you only need to work, study, and learn as assistant in our camps an average of 4-weeks to meet this tuition requirement. Learn more with our FAQ
Mentors of authentic skills
Cultivating a deep connection to nature through authentic outdoor skills is often lost in modern environmental education. We seek to change that. Our Program Mentors help you develop the foundations to expand your outdoor experience in arts both ancient and timeless. They also engage you in a College of Fellowship where together we explore best practices for sharing those skills with students of all ages.
A village of strengths
Our methods of community building and education support the diverse passions that comprise a truly engaging and intelligent learning community. This depth of experience and service is integral to our camps, adult programs and your role with us as a student of environmental education. At Trackers we seek to recreate a village of mentorship and sustainability. Through our Environmental Educator Training Program you become ambassador for a world that needs to exist.
Important This is an application based learning program. Only the best fits are selected. Environmental education must be a genuine career goal.
Outdoor Educator Training Program
Part 1 4-weeks learning as an assistant outdoor educator in our summer youth camps
Part 2 Our 1-month Trackers Village Immersion, a 1-weekend a month commitment
Work Study Rate of Pay 4-weeks learning as an assistant paid at hourly Oregon minimum wage
Trackers Village Immersion Tuition $1,295 save nearly $500 off our regular tuition
Trackers Village Immersion
The Trackers Village Immersion takes place one weekend a month where core instructors and the entire community of Trackers comes together to teach and learn wilderness skills of sustainability, personal nature connection, and feeding the village. These are skills that will distinguish you as an outdoor and environmental educator. With program enrollment we also include our Wilderness Skills Club for training beyond the weekends.
Schedule of Village Campouts
Village Campouts happen typically occur the 3rd weekend of every month except in June (it’s the first weekend due to our summer camp programs), July (we are only doing a single day July 4 village picnic), and December (for our holiday open house and events).
September 19-21, 2014
October 17-18, 2014
November 14-16, 2014
Optional December Holiday Events December 13-14, 2014
January 16-18, 2015
February 20-22, 2015
March 20-22, 2015
April 17-19, 2015
May 15-17, 2015
June 5-7, 2015
Optional July 4 Picnic July 4, 2015
August 14-16, 2015
Schedule of Wilderness Skills Club
The Trackers's Wilderness Skills Club is an opportunity for consistent practice and support while learning the skills of Trackers Earth. It offers Wild Craft Evenings at the Scout Pit with expert instructors in our Four Guilds and monthly Wilderness Skills Saturdays.
Wilderness Skills Saturdays - 1st Saturday of the Month This event focuses on field time getting hands skills tracking, training wilderness survival, or shooting at our outdoor archery range. For tracking instructors help you learn to identify and interpret wildlife sign while practicing awareness techniques for trailing animals. Unique among wilderness skills club programs, Trackers offers a friendly and focused environment where you learn as a team. It takes place in a private forest campground 45-minutes from Portland. Do to occasionally challenging winter road conditions at our Sandy location, we take hiatus from Wilderness Skills Saturdays in December, January, and February.
Wilderness Skills Evenings - 2nd Thursday of the Month Located in Southeast Portland, the Trackers Scout Pit has four Guild Rooms and an Archery Range. One room for Wilders and their homesteading crafts, basket making and medicinal plants. Another is for Artisans, blacksmithing or maybe working wood. Then there are the Mariners, brewing mead or building a kayak. Finally you have the Rangers, bow making, fire by friction, flintknapping and more. All this, plus an indoor archery range to regularly shoot in. You bring a personal project to work on or join our instructors as they facilitate a group skill.
Open Archery Range - Every Saturday An open archery range at our indoor range in SE Portland where you can come and use our bows and get tips from our archery mentors.
Please Note The specific evenings of weekends of these extracurricular program days could subject to change during the year. No Wilderness Skills Club the days or weekends of or weekends following - Labor Day, Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Years, Spring Break, Easter, Memorial Day
Community Gatherings, Potlucks & Trade Blankets
Nearly every month Trackers holds a community potluck and gathering at our SE Portland location. Every member of the village comes together to share food, celebrate community, shoot arrows in our archery range, and sometimes offer new skills. We often feature holiday specific themes with costumes or cooking contests along with our famous trade blanket where you trade-up your wares Barter Town style. These are community based evens and not an official part of the program. Since it is open to all, these are nights you can bring a friend to introduce the community.
Am I guaranteed 4-weeks of work to pay for the program? For the most part yes, with the rare exception of individual not meeting the professionals standards of the job. You get a paycheck at full wage for this program and thus are a full employee of Trackers with all the professional expectations that come with this.
Do I automatically get the job? What are you looking for? No. This jobs program has an application process just like any job or work study program. We’re looking for people enthusiastic about becoming awesome outdoor educators who serve their community and a greater connection to nature. We also need individuals who are able to represent Trackers in a thoughtful, caring, and compassionate way.
Can I work study more than 4-weeks in summer? And what do I do with the extra money? If your're good fit and we notice it, there's always a possibility of being scheduled more than 4-weeks of camp in the summer, even a full summer of work. That said, we will not guarantee it. If you earn more than your tuition, of course you get to do with that whatever you like. Perhaps you can go ride bumper cars, pay rent, or even take more Trackers classes. If you decide to buy the entire series of Futurama on Blu Ray, that may well count in your favor for additional weeks scheduled (just kidding, sort of).
Once I work my 4-weeks, do I have to attend the Trackers Village Immersion, or can I change my mind? We want this to be a good fit. You can change your mind if you want (so can we). Your paycheck is your money do with as you please! Woo hoo! After part of a summer with us, you may think we’re a little too much “Adams Family” for your tastes and we completely understand if you no longer love us.
Can I apply my earned money to other Trackers programs? Yes you can. Though the program scholarship you receive through this programs is specially granted for the Trackers Village Immersion. You can also apply it to whatever else you like because as we remind you, it’s your money.
Core Immersion Courses
1-year Trackers Village Program 1 weekends a month September to August, and ongoing skills evenings and days year-round. Discover an incredible connection with nature and community. For one year join the Trackers family as we celebrate, work and learn together as a village. Learning takes place through projects that help create the village. During monthly weekend campouts and wilderness skills days you choose from hands-on activities within our Four Guilds.
1-year Environmental Educator Training Program 3-9 weeks in the summer, 1 weekends a month September to August, and ongoing skills evenings and days year-round. Study to be an outdoor skills instructor with Trackers's unique model of environmental education. This program combines learning as an assistant in our Summer Camps with our Trackers Village Immersion.
Specialty Immersion Courses
8-months Archery Training Immersion 1-weekend a month immersed in the sport and art of archery. Our instructors provide expert coaching in archery fundamentals while bridging into more advanced skills.
2-months Hunting Immersion A course on the practice, ethics and regulations of subsistence hunting. This program takes place over a series of evenings and weekends.
Youth Apprenticeship Courses
Trackers Apprenticeships are the opportunity for youth to work with highly experienced mentors in wilderness skills and sustainability.
Ages 11-17 Rangers Apprenticeship Youth work with experienced mentors to develop authentic outdoor skills applicable to all aspects of life, learning, and leadership.
Ages 6-10 Junior Rangers Apprenticeship Youth learn the arts of animal tracking, wilderness survival, tracking and silent movement through the woods.
Ages 7-17 Archery Apprenticeship Intensive training program for any teen or youth interested in archery as a practice and art.