The Outward Bound Canada Instructor Development Program is designed to give you a high-quality immersion into the Outward Bound process. This is the most rugged of any course: you will be challenged mentally, physically and emotionally, so that you may advance your own skills in order to come away as a more confident outdoor educator. Furthermore, this immersion into the Outward Bound teaching model will educate you on how to coach students, meet them where they are at, manage risks, and challenge them where needed – so that your students will emerge from their courses and programs as more resilient, self-reliant and compassionate people.
Your journey will begin when you meet your group at the Outward Bound Canada (Rockies) office in Canmore, Alberta. From there, you will travel to a base camp in the Rocky Mountain Foothills, in the traditional lands of Treaty 7 First Nations. After a welcome to this territory, you will learn more about your fellow participants and you will help to create the daily activities of your adventure. After time at the base camp, you will travel to the heart of the Canadian Rockies, an area covering 3,945 hectares and running 27 km along the north bank of the Red Deer River. On this course, more than on any other, we will be sticking to the more rugged hiking terrain, ensuring you learn within circumstances that are likely to be more challenging than anything your students will face. However, the more rugged the terrain, the more beautiful the mountains become, giving you a first-hand look at breath-taking landscapes.
No Outward Bound expedition is a guided trip; it is always an immersive experience led by you and your group. For prospective instructors the emphasis is about teaching you to lead a group. On this expedition, you will learn three distinct skill-sets: technical skills, focusing on developing the foundational competencies needed to be a professional outdoor leader; people skills, focusing on developing core facilitation, educational, communication and processing skills; and personal development skills, focusing on cultivating the personal qualities, attributes and state of being that are the real foundation upon which all other skills rest. Furthermore, your course also includes a 48-hour solo experience, where you will put your new-found skills into practice and have the space to reflect on earlier conversations from the course, absorb important realizations about yourself, and leave behind anything that will no longer serve you going forward. Those who successfully complete the course are eligible to apply for a summer internship with the Outward Bound Canada. If you are interested in an internship with us, please read the Internship Opportunity section below.
To begin the application process for this program, please fill in the online application by clicking next to the course dates at the top of this page. To learn how fit you need to be for an Outward Bound Canada course, click here.
Internships are designed to allow you to continue your learning from your program and get practical experience leading alongside our seasoned instructors. If chosen for an Internship, you would be assigned to one of our wilderness programs during 2017.
Funding for the Indigenous Instructor Development Program is offered through the Slaight Foundation, Gilgan Foundation and other generous donors, providing sustainable, long term funding for the growth of Indigenous programming at Outward Bound Canada. Please see the Indigenous Programs page for more information.