Outdoor Education - Teambuilding Instructor

YMCA Camp Widjiwagan

Ely, Minnesota

Job Type Temporary
Salary Details $85/Day + Room & Board
Deadline Aug 19, 2024

YMCA Camp Widjiwagan is looking for young educators who are passionate about teaching to a diverse group of elementary, middle, and high school aged students. Work directly across the street from the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness teaching children in 4th - 12th grade about the natural world. 

Schools from all over Minnesota and beyond have attended Widjiwagan for over 50 years because of our mission: To instill in young people an ethic of respect through environmental education and wilderness travel. We take this mission seriously and our long term relationships with schools in Minneapolis and St. Paul is proof of that.

Instructors work with one group of students for 4-5 days at a time, building deep relationships and providing mentorship while educating students on a variety of topics.

Classes include: forest studies, animal studies, freshwater studies, canoeing, teambuilding, nordic skiing, wilderness survival, bears, wolves, glacial geology, Anishinaabe culture, the fur trade, and more. 


  • Pay starts at $85/day + room and board
  • Housing includes a room to yourself, in a 4 bed, two bathroom house with wifi, heat, a living room, and a porch
  • Live and work directly across the street from the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness
  • Fall season runs early September - early November. 
  • Winter/Spring season runs early January - mid May.
  • About the word "Widjiwagan"
  • apply ASAP if interested, these positions fill up very quickly

Official YMCA Job Description:

Job Summary:

The Outdoor Education/Team Building Instructor is responsible for facilitating environmental and outdoor recreation activities and teambuilding programs. The incumbent plans and prepares for programs and serves as a host and liaison to participant groups.  The incumbent provides high quality experiences for participants that focus on the YMCA core values: caring, honesty, respect and responsibility.

Essential Functions:

  • Prepares for, teaches and/or facilitates environmental and outdoor recreation programs based on an established curriculum and safety guidelines.
  • Prepares for and facilitates teambuilding programs based on established curriculum and safety guidelines.
  • Serves as a host and liaison to program participant groups.
  • Performs inspections on teambuilding structures and equipment and communicates the need for repairs.
  • Maintains, inventories, and repairs class materials and equipment.
  • Identifies and responds to participant behavioral issues in an appropriate manner, as needed.
  • Assists in revising curriculum by actively pursuing new teaching techniques and activities to incorporate.
  • Participates in staff training and meetings.
  • Ensures the site is kept clean and organized.
  • Assists in setup and cleanup for program activities.
  • May help in other camp program areas as needed.


This position reports to the Camp Program Director or Sr. Camp Program Coordinator who reports to the Camp Executive Director.  The incumbent interacts regularly with camp staff, program participants, school teachers and chaperones from a diverse background.



  • Minimum age of 18
  • Experience facilitating programs engendering group participation preferably in an outdoor setting
  • Effective organizational skills
  • Strong verbal and written communication skills
  • Must possess a current First Aid and CPR certification, or be able to obtain certification within the first 30 days of hire
  • Demonstrated ability to work as a member of a team
  • Ability to accomplish duties/tasks with little direct supervision
  • Demonstrated ability to work with diverse groups


  • Related educational background
  • Knowledge of environmental and natural history concepts
  • Basic computer skills
  • Ability to pass a drivers road test for YMCA vehicles and trailers.
  • Upon hire, completion of YMCA provided Motor Vehicle and or Department of Transportation Insurance Training.

Work Conditions:

Must have the physical ability to lead and participate in camp programs and activities which include, but are not limited to, hiking, climbing, belaying, team building initiatives, building campfires, physical games, and activities. 
Must have the ability to be outside in all weather conditions and on your feet for prolonged periods of time (up to 10 hours in a day).

Additional Notes

This job description represents the major functions of the position but is not intended to be all-inclusive.  The incumbent is responsible for taking direction from the Executive Director or Vice President of Camp Operations or their representatives in completing projects or performing duties deemed necessary for Camp or Association success.

Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Pledge 

The Y of the North is committed to the work and everyday practices of eliminating disparities and eradicating of unjust systems to become a multicultural, anti-racist and anti-oppressive organization. YMCA of the North team members and volunteers must exemplify the association’s mission, vision and values of caring, equity, honesty, respect and responsibility. 

The YMCA of the North continues to develop plans and strategies to ensure team members and volunteers reflect the demographics of the communities we serve. We will continually conduct institutional racism and oppression review of our policies, procedures and practices in recruitment and selection; compensation and benefits; professional development and training; promotions; transfers; layoffs; terminations; and the ongoing development of a multicultural, anti-racist and anti-oppressive work environment and culture that promotes equity and respect for the human dignity of all. We value and respect this diversity and choose to be inclusive through our acceptance of all.


To apply, go to this link: 6014683:Career Search (saashr.com) . Search for jobs in Ely, MN. Apply for Outdoor Education - Teambuilding Instructor Daily. Feel free to email info@widji.org to speak to our Fall, Winter, and Spring Program Director if you have problems with the application process or have questions.

Apply ASAP if interested, these positions fill up very quicky

When you apply, please indicate that you are responding to the posting on Conservation Job Board.

Category Environmental Education, Outdoor Recreation