This Apprentice Naturalist Educator training program is for outdoor educators beginning their career of connecting people to, and fostering care for, the natural environment. Based in Moab, Utah, the 12-week apprenticeship focuses on teaching school and youth groups at our Professor Valley Field Camp and on multi-day river trips. Apprentices learn research-supported teaching practices, to coach Social Emotional Learning and to promote Equity and Inclusion at CFI.Technical training includes:

– river running and whitewater skills
– risk management
– trip and outfitting logistics
– vehicle and trailer handling
– camp cooking
– equipment maintenance


Apprentices will receive a stipend $300/per two-week pay period during the 12-week apprenticeship. Regular employment for first-year naturalist-guides begins early June through mid-October. Pay will then be at competitive rates and on a salary basis. Pay increases are rewarded for increased river skills, familiarity with CFI programs, and leadership abilities.

Free shared co-ed housing is available during Apprenticeship with one hour/pay period work-trade exchange requested. Once Apprenticeship is complete, guides are welcome to find their own housing, but the continued rental option will be available at $100/per pay period plus the work trade requirement for summer through fall months. Meals are included while working CFI programs. Fingerprint clearance for Educators and Food Handler’s Course will be at CFI expense.


– 60% Teaching and Guiding
– 20% Support Staff duties (e.g. facilitation of meals, driving, cooking, rigging and de-rigging trips, gear maintenance, and completion of manual labor tasks)
– 10% Lesson planning and curriculum development
– 10% Assisting with office duties such as marketing, development, and registration

Tagged as: Instruction and Guiding, Teaching/Education, Water Skills


- A positive, growth mindset with the goal of improving as an educator
- Ability to work a flexible schedule, including days, nights, and weekends
- Available to work the complete season (Early March through May or October)
- Effectively interact with people of diverse backgrounds and different levels of experience
- Minimum of 21 years of age and clean driving record for three years
- Desire to creatively develop science and education curricula and lesson plans

Required Skills:

- Lived experience and/or Bachelor's or Associate's degree
- Current Wilderness First Aid (WFA) and CPR certifications, from an approved vendor, or proof of enrollment in a course to be completed prior to the first day of employment
- Ability to pass a comprehensive background check
- Wilderness First Aid (WFR preferred)
- Participates in and passes Driver Training
- Ability to operate a motor vehicle (van or truck) to transport program participants or to conduct other work activities.

About Canyonlands Field Institute

Canyonlands Field Institute provides quality outdoor education on the Colorado Plateau to inspire care of wild places and renew the human spirit. We believe in empowering students of all ages and backgrounds to deepen their connection to their surroundings. Through inclusive educational experiences, CFI seeks to build knowledge within practices of science, artistic expression, and Social and Emotional Learning. We are creating a team of educators with diverse life experiences who are committed to providing opportunities for all types of learners. By joining our educational community, you can help us promote the growth of caring leaders and empowered students who can effect positive change in our world.

Application Instructions

Applications are accepted on a rolling basis with interviews beginning November 16th. Positions are open till filled (Positions usually filled before Jan. 1) Please submit to [email protected]: - cover letter - resume - three references: name, email, phone. At least two should be employment-related - copy of driver’s license - motor vehicle report (current within 1 year) - declare any felony conviction - current copies of First Aid/CPR cards - copy of current WFR, WAFA, or WFA

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