Ski Instructor Jobs on the Rise for Winter 2013/14

By user41563, 17 Oct '13 at 11:01

There are a handful of dream jobs out there, but surely it does not get much better than working as a ski instructor in the heart of the Rockies! It may sound like an exclusive career choice, but it is really a widely accessible option, aspiring instructors just need a simple Level 1 qualification to make the mark, and from there it is possible to add more credentials and climb the instructor ladder.

With the growth of the ski industry there are increasingly more opportunities and more positions available for rookie instructors. The 2013/14 winter season is gearing up to be one of the busiest seasons on record.

Lake Louise ski resort in Banff is one of Canada’s largest employers. “Every season Lake Louise will employ instructors that have been qualified in the same season,” said Lake Louise Ski School Director Kevin Eaton, who will on average employ 150 ski and snowboard instructors each season.

“Working as a Level 1 coach is less about the coaches skiing ability, and more about their ability to deliver a fun and informative lesson in a safe environment. So it’s very achievable for a wide range of people!” commented Linley Lewis, Director of Basecamp, a training organization who help aspiring pass their qualifications and seek employment in the ski industry.

Basecamp are one of a handful of companies offering specific ski instructor courses that train prospective instructors to either Level 1 or Level 2 standard. “In Canada those qualifying with a Level 1 will be able to work in the same season, and those who get Level 2 give themselves the perfect footstep to gain employment at a higher level the following season,” said Lewis.

From the 150 ski instructors and snowboard instructors Lake Louise will employ each season there will be an average of 30 at Level 1, and 50 at Level 2, and from that 50 they expect 30 or so will come from graduates from companies such as Basecamp. “They’ve been trained by our staff, they’ve been trained in our resort, we’ve had 11 weeks to look at them, why wouldn’t we want to employ them?” said Kevin Eaton.

With the rising cost of higher grade tuition fees in both the US and the UK, it seems an increasing number of potential students are heading to the mountains rather than University or College. “Having left school, and then joined an insurance broker to start earning money I considered going to University, but preferred the idea of gaining qualifications and working. I passed my Level 1 and Level 2 last season, and had an interview at the end of the season and got my job confirmed, so this year I’m off to the mountains to start my dream job. I couldn’t be happier!” commented Basecamp graduate Sam Cooper who is joining the Lake Louise ski instructor team in the 2013/14 season.

There is also a good accumulative earning potential, as a Level 1 instructor one can expect to earn $8-$12 per hour, and as a Level 2 from $10-$14 per hour. Both come with commission incentives and a handful of costs being covered such as accommodation, ski pass, bus pass etc. All that is needed to be viable for work (aside form the qualifications) is a valid Canadian Work visa, which are available at the beginning of each calendar year.

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