Teaching Fellow

Conserve School is looking for energetic, dedicated, and mature college graduates with an interest in environmental sustainability and education to serve as Conserve School Teaching Fellows for the 2017-2018 academic year.

The Teaching Fellow position is a live-on nonexempt position following the academic calendar. The Teaching Fellowship program provides training, education and practical experience in a boarding school setting while allowing Fellows to work alongside experienced educators in the areas of academic teaching, outdoor education, and student services.

Applicants should use our Employment Application Form to upload their letter of interest, résumé, and three letters of reference.

The Teaching Fellow hiring team, in December and January, will be reviewing applications and interviewing candidates for summer 2017 positions. Offers of employment will be made in February or March 2017. However, applications will be accepted and reviewed until all available positions are filled.

For questions about the Teaching Fellow program, contact Phil DeLong, Director of Enrollment and Student Support, at 715-547-1320, or by email.

Conserve School is an Equal Opportunity Employer.

Position Description

Essential Functions

Provide supervision, care, and support for adolescent students on campus, as well as during off-campus activities. Assist a Lead Teacher in the preparation, delivery, and evaluation of one core class. Plan, prepare for, and conduct programming for students, including multi-day backcountry travel and camping experiences in upper Great Lakes region. Contribute to and support the physical, intellectual, personal, emotional, and social development of adolescent students. Communicate effectively with students, their families, colleagues, and other stakeholders.

Teaching Fellows must have been awarded a college degree (B.A. or B.S), and hold certification, valid through the end of May 2018, in Wilderness First Aid (or a more advanced level of training, such as Wilderness Advanced First Aid, Wilderness First Responder, or Wilderness EMT; Conserve School will provide a stipend of up to $200 for those who need to acquire certification before beginning employment).

The following physical and cognitive skills and abilities are necessary for a Teaching Fellow to successfully perform the essential functions listed above:

  • Ability to live and work on the campus of Conserve School.
  • Ability to see and hear sufficiently well to monitor activity, interactions, and environmental sounds. Aware of surroundings.
  • Ability to effectively communicate clearly to children and adults, orally and in writing, using the English language.
  • Ability to use judgment to solve problems and make decisions, including in stressful situations.
  • Ability to effectively regulate emotions.
  • Ability to establish respectful rapport with a wide variety of people.
  • Ability to maintain confidentiality.
  • Ability to take direction and correction.
  • Ability to work for prolonged periods in various postures and positions, including standing, walking, climbing stairs, bending, kneeling, and sleeping on the ground on a camping pad.
  • Ability to lift and carry up to 30 pounds.
  • Ability to be outdoors for extended periods of time in a wide variety of weather conditions, including extreme cold.
  • Nature and Scope of Duties

    Specific duties vary from week to week based on the needs of the students. Conserve School selects Teaching Fellows based on the needs of the school and the interests of the candidates.

    Duties of this position include, but are not limited to:

    • Live on campus. Teaching Fellows will be assigned to apartments in residence houses.
    • Participate in the rotating duty schedule on weeknights and weekends. {Approx. 50% of regular responsibility} Activities include, but are not limited to:
      • Residence house supervision,
      • Recreation center supervision,
      • Waterfront supervision,
      • Climbing wall supervision,
      • Organizing afterschool and weekend activities
    • Assist a Lead Teacher in the preparation, delivery, and evaluation of one core class (Stewardship, Outdoor Skills, or AP Environmental Science). Visit the Conserve School website to learn more about these courses. {Approx. 22% of regular responsibility}
    • Support students in their learning and development through the following {Approx. 6% of regular responsibility}:
      • Serve as the advisor for two students.
      • Co-lead one or two Exploration Week wilderness trips or alternate duties as needed each year.
      • Assist with student solo camping supervision or alternate duties as needed each semester.
    • Assist in other areas in support of the school as assigned and as needed. {Approx. 22% of regular responsibility} Areas include, but are not limited to (not all Teaching Fellows will participate in all of these):
      • Assisting with the teaching of additional classes,
      • Substitute teaching,
      • Assisting with outdoor and recreational gear maintenance and organization,
      • Assisting with planning and implementing events and programming,
      • Supporting students taking Advanced Algebra and/or Precalculus,
      • Driving students to off-campus appointments and activities

    • Support and communicate to students, staff, guests, and community the mission, vision, and values of Conserve School.
    • Assist students in developing a trusting, supportive living-learning community by teaching and role-modeling the Conserve Code, (which includes refraining from the possession or use of illegal drugs), maintaining appropriate relationships, and practicing skills such as listening, communicating clearly and directly, demonstrating flexibility, managing stress, making thoughtful decisions, seeking help when needed, and resolving conflicts professionally.
    • Ensure the safety and good order of students at all times. Teaching Fellows are expected to take the initiative and keep or restore order wherever and whenever it is needed, and to respond to emergencies at all times, even if not on duty.
    • Participate sincerely in the staff assessment and evaluation process.
    • Participate, as needed, in all-school projects, including accreditation.
    • Support the school and its leadership.
    • Other duties as assigned.

    PDF of Position Description

    More Information

    Non-formal Teaching Experience

    Teaching Fellows gain experience planning and teaching alongside Conserve School's talented teaching staff. Depending on interest, experience, and ability, some Teaching Fellows will assist in teaching Outdoor Skills (learn more), a required outdoor education course, others will assist with teaching our required Stewardship course (learn more), while others will assist with teaching AP Environmental Science, our required science course (learn more).

    Other non-formal teaching responsibilities may include:

    • Field-based after-school and weekend programs
    • Public programs, such as nature walks, night hikes, and outdoor skills
    • Outdoor and recreation skills activities (such as camping, canoeing, bicycling, skiing, snowshoeing, orienteering, Geocaching)
    • Programs for local middle school-aged charter school students

    Student Life Experience

    As student life staff at Conserve School, Teaching Fellows have an integral role in maintaining and improving the Conserve School community, living in houses that include staff apartments and student dorm wings. Each person in the community contributes to the diversity of the residential setting, bringing enrichment from individual traits, heritage, skills, and interests.

    Working with the Director and Assistant Directors of Student Life, Fellows provide supervision, support, mentoring, and program leadership to the high-school-aged students who participate in Conserve School's semester program.

    Semester School Operations Experience

    The Teaching Fellow experience provides an opportunity for individuals to experience the variety of tasks that must be completed to run a successful semester school. Teaching Fellows will participate in a weekly seminar, in which they will explore topics from adolescent development to program design and implementation. Teaching Fellows will have the chance to put theory into practice as they work to support the enrollment, student life, and academic support offices.

    Special Opportunities

    Each year fellows are presented with various opportunities to enhance their experience and build their résumé. These opportunities, which help to create well-rounded learning experiences, may include:

    • Certifications in Wilderness First Aid, Wilderness Water Safety, and others
    • National or local conferences
    • Outdoor experiences
    • Professional workshops
    • Lectures or symposia
    • Networking

    Additional Information

    • Start Date: July 31, 2017
    • End Date: June 5, 2018
    • Renewable for up to three years
    • Full Time Compensation: Hourly wage that typically averages $300/week for full-time work
    • Number of working weeks per school year: 39
    • End of Year Bonus: $1,000
    • Retirement Plan Match: 5% of salary
    • Health Insurance: 80% of premium covered by Conserve School
    • Housing: Provided as condition of employment (more below); no pets permitted
    • Meals: Provided when students are on campus
    • On-the-job experience: Priceless


    Two or three fellows share a well-appointed apartment, including a kitchen, a living room with gas fireplace, and private bedrooms with 2 1/2 shared baths. Washers and dryers are also included. Apartments are furnished with basic kitchen cookware and eating utensils, beds, desks and chairs, a dining table and chairs, and a few pieces of living room furniture. Meals are provided in the Conserve School dining room when semester student programs are in session.

    In addition, Teaching Fellows have access to a range of recreational equipment and opportunities on the Conserve School campus and beyond, including:

    • Aerobic and strength training equipment
    • Climbing wall
    • Outdoor equipment (i.e. skis, snowshoes, kayaks, canoes, bicycles)
    • Groomed winter sports trails
    • Hiking trails
    • Lakes

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