As a summer camp leader, you will spend your days outside with kids, exploring, learning, playing, and supporting them. Juneau (Dzantik’i Héeni), Alaska is a beautiful place that has a vibrant community of outdoor loving people, and endless opportunities for adventure. The job will bring you to many of these wonderful natural spaces where you will be responsible for a group of up to 12 kids aged 3-14 (though ages in any specific week of camp will not be so broad). There are four age groups: Héenis (ages 3-6), Flying Squirrels (grades 1-3), Marmots (grades 3-6), and Mountain Goats (grades 6-9). Leaders work directly with a co-educator and other program sta in the field, as well as partner with other local youth program providers for activities. Before and throughout the summer, leaders will receive training and experience in inquiry based, hands-on field leadership and Southeast Alaska natural history.

Using games and activities you will guide a group each week based on a natural theme. Some weeks will be more active and include hiking, exploration, kayaking, paddle boarding, and possibly biking. Other weeks will be more science and art focused and include botany, mammal investigations, earth art sculptures, flower pressing, the salmon cycle, and outdoor skills like fire building and navigation. Your main role will be to ensure the safety and management of the group, building your knowledge of child development and practicing inclusivity and cultural responsiveness.

● Provide support for, and ensure the physical and emotional safety and well-being of a group of up to 12 children
● Promote good decision making skills, leadership, and a curiosity for the outdoors
● Prepare and facilitate fun, engaging lessons and activities with a focus on outdoor skills, natural history, and nature education
● Perform some administrative tasks in support of the summer day camp program, such as communicating with participant’s parents and contacting local contractors
● Perform weekly duties including: restocking supplies, cleaning, and other tasks as necessary
● Participate in weekly staff meetings, mandatory training, and in regular, open communication with co-workers

Tagged as: Camp Counselors, Teaching/Education


● Experience and interest in working with preschool, elementary, or middle school aged children, particularly in group or outdoor education settings
● Experience managing groups of 6-12 children, such as sleepaway camp, daycamp, classroom experience, or coaching
● Experience planning and implementing engaging activities and games in an outdoor setting
● Experience in, and comfort with, the outdoors, such as guiding, backcountry travel, or natural history interpretation

Required Skills:

● Excellent interpersonal and communication skills; ability to work on a team and to create a welcoming environment to all participants
● First Aid and Child/Infant CPR certification (or higher) by start of employment, Wilderness First Aid or Responder is great but not required
● Ability to maintain energy throughout an 8-hour day which could include: hiking up to 6 miles per day, often in wet weather.
● Must be able to attend training May 30th-June 2nd, 2023

Preferred Skills:

Discovery Southeast provides regular training as well as on the job opportunities to train with experienced leaders. Applicants will need to pass a background check before employment.

About Discovery Southeast

For over 30 years, Discovery Southeast’s education and exploration programs have deepened Southeast Alaskans’ connection with nature in Lingít Aaní, the traditional lands of the Áak’w & T’aakú Kwáan. We are a regional non-profit started by outdoor leaders in Southeast Alaska to ensure that local residents, particularly children, experience the outstanding natural areas that travelers from around the world come to visit. Today, with many of those same founders still involved, our programs teach children to experience, be comfortable in, and explore nature with a field-based, hands-on approach. We strive to reach all Juneau youth, particularly those who might not otherwise be introduced to the outdoors at a young age. We aim to recruit, retain, and develop sta who bring traditional ecological knowledge, diverse backgrounds, and a mindset of curiosity about the complete history of Southeast Alaska.

Application Instructions

Interested candidates should 1) submit a cover letter and resume to Kelly Sorensen, at [email protected], AND 2) Applicants who are current or recent university students may consider submitting a resume through the Alaska Conservation Foundation Ted Smith intern program (alaskaconservation.org/internships/), which funds transportation to and from Alaska, as well as additional training. Applying through both routes gives applicants the most options.